Tag Archives: New Moon in Aries

Weekly Forecast April 13: Pluto Retrograde, New Moon in Aries

Composite by Osk Ingad Alden, 2015.

Aries Composite by Osk Ingad Alden, 2015.

It’s said that in every ending there’s a new beginning, but we’re in a strange lunar cycle in which the beginning is likely to come first.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. Endings can be extremely painful, all the more so when the new beginning isn’t yet in sight. Most of us have experienced this anguish in the context of relationships. When your heart is broken, it’s hard to imagine the new person who might come along in a month or a year or maybe never. Sometimes the pain is so bad that we swear off relationships entirely, however temporary the sentiment may be. Continue reading

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Weekly Forecast March 24: Mercury Sextile Pluto, New Moon in Aries

New Moon in Aries

© Dan Collier for Dreamstime.com

The big news this week is the New Moon in Aries on March 30, the first New Moon of the spring and the astrological year.

Although the New Moon doesn’t take place for another week as of this post, the tension is evident already on Monday, when in just over four hours, the Moon in Capricorn aspects Jupiter, Uranus, and Pluto. These three planets have been in a volatile “T-square” configuration that is the astrological signature corresponding to the surge in global conflict, especially popular uprisings and overthrow of governments.

The New Moon falls less than 3 degrees from Uranus, the planet of rebellion and sudden change. Uranus in Aries is impatient and wants change now; thus the revolutions in which Continue reading

Weekly Forecast April 8: New Moon in Aries, Pluto Retrograde

Budding. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Budding. © Pat Paquette, 2013.

Back in the mid-90s, a friend of mine was becoming an aunt for the second time at the birth of her brother’s baby. An image is ingrained in my memory of the baby lying on the countertop in my friend’s kitchen.

It’s a strange image. On one hand, I cringe when I think about the baby lying so open and vulnerable, not wrapped in a blanket, not being held, more or less “on display” for the entertainment of others. On the other hand, it was eerily fascinating to watch the baby’s slow movements, to be in an empathic link with a being suddenly transported from one environment to a completely different one, like an alien suddenly forced to breathe air instead of water and to feel physical sensations so confusing that its little heart might race in fear and panic and give out before it had scarcely drawn its first breath.

There is a certain violence in being born, and once it’s over, it takes a while to recuperate and adjust to the new reality. Many of us have been going through a slow and painful transformation, not unlike physical birth. It’s painful, violent, scary and, at times, confusing. I sometimes wonder whether lack of immediate conscious awareness is a built-in survival mechanism in human babies.

Being able to sleep temporarily while we transform certainly is a merciful gift. Otherwise, the pain can be unbearable. The “sleep” part happened in February and March with the build-up of planets in Pisces. That’s over now, and it’s time to wake up. Even with the current planetary lineup in action-oriented Aries, you may need additional time to stretch and adjust – not easy, because events do seem to be happening at an accelerated pace, and not all of them are positive. At the same time, you may still be feeling raw, open, vulnerable, and not very fast on your feet. Of course, it depends on the quality of your experience, and how events are manifesting for you depends on where the planets are transiting your natal chart.*

This week’s New Moon in Aries is almost like the “real” equinox. The first day of spring (apologies to my readers south of the equator) is a powerful symbol of rebirth, but then right away, we had a Full Moon in Libra, which is more about endings. At this week’s New Moon, we have the Sun, Moon, and three planets in Aries. Mercury is still finishing up his tour through sleepy Pisces, but he enters Aries this Saturday. If you’ve experienced difficulty focusing, you should get some relief soon.

New Moon in Aries

Click on image to enlarge

The New Moon is on Wednesday, in close conjunction with Mars and fairly close to Venus. The so-called “love planets” conjoined early this morning (Sunday) and remain in alignment throughout this week. The Sun and Moon, Mars and Venus all so close to each other is a signature for soul mates. If you’ve just met someone or are in a budding relationship, pay very close attention to what happens this week. Likewise, if you’re in a relationship that you know isn’t right for you, do your best to suspend judgment and just observe. Watch for synchronicities, and listen to your intuition.

The big undercurrent to this New Moon is the approaching square between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn. The aspect isn’t exact until May 25, but it is making itself felt, especially in world events, which may take an even darker turn with Pluto’s station retrograde on Friday. Planets are especially powerful when they are stationed. Pluto is named for the Roman god of the underworld, a shadowy figure that reminds us all of our shadow side.

Pluto and Saturn remain in a fairly close sextile and in mutual reception, a marker for fast destruction of what isn’t working. At the New Moon, Uranus is in a near-exact inconjunct (technically called a quincunx) with Saturn, so this puts Uranus, Pluto, and Saturn all in an edgy relationship that suggests rebellion and counter-rebellion, ineffectual efforts to bring necessary change by conventional means, and general chaos. There is no way to preserve the system we have, and that probably applies to your personal life as well. Hanging onto the familiar and comfortable is getting more and more impossible.

After this New Moon, we’ll be heading into a long eclipse period, starting with a Full Moon lunar eclipse on April 25 and ending with another lunar eclipse on May 25. Between the two, on May 9, is a solar eclipse in Taurus. You may not feel “ready” to head into more turbulence – I know I don’t – but we’re going to have to do the best we can. Aries has a reputation for being independent and somewhat selfish, but the Ram is also fearless. We’re not going to have the luxury of long, careful thought in order to avoid mistakes, but will have to jump into the unknown and “just do it.”

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

* It’s not to late to order your StarGuide Spring forecast. If you order right away, I should be able to get it to you before Wednesday. In each report, I give you some ideas about how the New and Full Moon might manifest for you personally.

Weekly Forecast March 26: Sun Square Pluto

A pair of trilliums. © Pat Paquette, 2012.

This week is dominated by jarring squares and inconjuncts, with Mars and Mercury still retrograde – the latter back in Pisces, the keyword of which is “I believe.” What beliefs are being upset and turned on their heads?

We start right out Monday with inconjuncts from the Sun to Mars and Mercury to Saturn. Make sure you’re hearing what the other person really said and vice versa. There’s huge potential here for mixed and messed-up messages. When we get angry and frustrated, chemicals are released in our bodies that unfortunately don’t disappear on the spot when we find out 20 minutes later that what we believed we saw or heard isn’t true.

In my documentary class last quarter, we watched an episode of This American Life in which an Iraqi filmmaker living in the United States tries to understand American beliefs about the war. The piece ends with his observation:

Everybody hears what is easier for them to believe.

Pisces, you’ll recall, isn’t the Fish but the Fishes. There are two of them, and they swim in different directions. “Belief” is a double-edged sword. Used positively, with intent, it can create miracles. Used in ignorance, it produces something like you see in this mini-documentary.

It so happened that I watched another documentary this weekend that featured a lesson about beliefs, also involving war. The lesson was from the unlikeliest of sources, former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, who was scorned by many for escalating U.S. involvement in Vietnam. The film offers not only a very different perspective, but the reflections of a man at the end of his life looking back on decisions that resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings.

“Belief and seeing, they’re both often wrong,” McNamara says. Specifically, he refers to the Gulf of Tonkin incident, which he says the Johnson administration misread. “We were wrong. But we had in our minds a mindset that led to that action. And it carried such heavy costs.”

“We see what we want to believe,” filmmaker Errol Morris interjects.

More than 20 hours of interviews went into the making of The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, which won an Oscar for best documentary in 2003. Part of what makes the film so riveting is the haunting music of Philip Glass. Morris and Glass, both Aquarians, worked in close collaboration.

In an interview with Senses of Cinema, Morris discusses the ambiguity that his film brings to McNamara’s character. The public may not want to see their leaders this way, but they should, he says. “They should see the world in complex terms. I prefer the word ‘complex’ to ‘ambiguous.'”

Therein lies the dichotomy of Pisces thinking. There is faith, and there is blind faith. Many people, when confronted with ambiguities and complexities, rely on faith. But when taken to the extreme, it’s blind faith.

With Mercury retrograde in Pisces, it’s time to examine and question our beliefs. You might even want to question your belief in astrology … starting with the belief that it’s a belief. I would love to do a man-on-the-street interview and ask people whether they believe in astronomy. Or psychology.

Speaking of Pisces and former defense secretaries, Dick Cheney is in the news this morning following a heart transplant. Yeah, I know, I can just hear the jokes: “Cheney finally gets a heart,” etc. This man has been a real puzzle to me and to astrologers in general. Somewhere I read one astrologer’s theory that there are two kinds of Aquarius – those ruled by Saturn, the traditional ruler, and those ruled by Uranus, the modern ruler. According to this astrologer, Cheney falls in the first group. Sorry, but that’s not a satisfactory explanation. And anyway, the bigger puzzle is Cheney’s Pisces Moon. I’m an Aquarius with a Pisces Moon. It’s almost enough to make you stop believing in astrology … except that there really are some good explanations.

Cheney is a Rising Virgo. That gives him a sixth-house Sun, which in some ways functions as a Virgo. Aquarius and Virgo are inconjunct signs – they have nothing in common. So right away you have a conflicted personality. Add to that the Pisces Moon, and you’ve got an individual of exceptional complexity and ambiguity.

My theory about Cheney is that his Pisces Moon is way too sensitive for the time and place in which he was born. Men in our culture have a particularly tough time integrating a Pisces Moon, so they tend to overcompensate to protect their soft underbelly. Apparently he started drinking at an early age; escapism through drugs and alcohol is a weakness associated with Pisces. His heart troubles also began when he was relatively young, which isn’t surprising to an astrologer. Planets in the natal sixth house often indicate inherent physical weaknesses. The Sun rules the heart, and Cheney’s Sun is afflicted by a tight square to Saturn in Taurus.

So here you have hypersensitive Moon in Pisces, forced to live side by side with a Sun-Saturn square that points not only to a weak heart but to unresolved father issues and sweeping material insecurity. It’s interesting that Cheney’s ancestors were French Huguenots – a sect persecuted by the Church in the 16th and 17th centuries. Pisces Moon often indicates past-life connections, and this is the karmic baggage Cheney is carrying. It’s enough to make a Cold Warrior drink and drug himself into oblivion.

Of course, being an astrologer, I immediately ran to look at the chart for his transplant. It’s astounding! For starters, last Thursday’s New Moon conjunct Uranus and Mercury was in his eighth house of death and regeneration. The eighth house also is associated with surgery. On Saturday, when the transplant was performed, the conjunction of Uranus and the Sun (ruler of the heart) was exact. Cheney’s lunar South Node is at 2 degrees Aries, the degree of the New Moon, which also was trine his natal Pluto.

Of course, Mercury and Mars (ruler of surgery) were retrograde – Mars is in his first house, within a few degrees of his Ascendant. Is that going to work to his advantage? According to press reports, he’s been waiting nearly two years for a heart – in other words, since the cardinal T-square in 2010. At the height of that configuration, Cheney was in the hospital being fitted with an artificial blood-pumping device.

Heart transplants must be performed when the organ is available, so the timing wasn’t within his control. Ironically, Dick Cheney is now one of the biggest guinea pigs ever in our cosmic astrology lab! We’re going to learn a lot by the success of this operation, his rate of recovery, and any changes in beliefs that result from his near-death experience. Maybe he’ll even end up believing in astrology.

Back to this week’s aspects, the Sun squares Pluto on Thursday, providing a preview of what we might expect when the Uranus-Pluto square is exact starting this summer. Revolution and crackdown are becoming a way of life. Depending on where this square falls in your chart, you may experience your own version of rebellion and harsh response by an authority figure. Don’t push your luck with your boss or parents.

On Saturday, we have another pair of inconjuncts, this time from Mars to Uranus and Venus to Saturn. There’s an explosion waiting to happen, but for some reason, the fuse won’t light. Stifled arguments may come out in passive-aggressive ways. Venus and Saturn are more about feelings of isolation and loneliness, but this should be fairly easy to handle with a nice hot bath or a walk in the park. If there’s no one to buy you flowers, get your own. And remember, chocolate is the goddess’s gift to mankind.

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

P.S. StarGuide Spring forecasts are now ready! I’ve still got a backlog of a few days, but I’ve caught up enough to reactivate the PayPal button on the report order page. Many thanks to everyone who has been waiting so patiently.

Weekly Forecast March 19: Spring Equinox, New Moon in Aries

Aries. From the Empowered Feminine Zodiac series by Karen MacKenzie. © 2012.

Strap yourself in and prepare for lift-off! The Sun enters Aries this week, closely followed by the New Moon and a dynamite conjunction with Uranus.

According to astrological convention, we’d predict stunning new beginnings, doors flying open with explosive force, and unexpected new developments of all kinds. That may indeed happen, but we need to keep in mind first and foremost that Mars, planetary ruler of Aries, is retrograde. Moreover, he’s in Virgo, and Mercury, the ruler of Virgo, is in Aries and also retrograde.

We might read that as an indication that any new developments will be delayed until mid-April, when Mercury and Mars both will have returned direct. I have no doubt that many of you will experience the New Moon this way. But I’d like to offer you an additional, alternative interpretation.

I believe it’s possible that the new beginnings and unexpected events will involve starting over with a project, relationship, or situation that began many years ago, but that you weren’t able to complete for one reason or another. Maybe you were missing a key piece of information. Or, you may have lacked the skills to make it work. Perhaps you just weren’t mature enough to deal with the situation.

I don’t mean to suggest that you should drop everything and contact the man or woman who broke your heart five years ago. In fact, I wouldn’t advise it. However, if that person contacts you, take it as a sign that you are being given a chance to do something differently this time in order to succeed. The same advice applies if you’re contacted by a former employer or someone else from your past.

Whatever transpires this week, it’s key to moving forward on your life’s path. Not only is the New Moon near the 0 Aries point, but it’s at a degree that factored heavily in the cardinal T-square in the summer of 2010. Most of us remember that as a turbulent, frustrating period. So much has happened since then that it seems like a different eon. And maybe it was …

The Aries ingress occurs on Tuesday. Since 1993, the vernal equinox has been celebrated as International Astrology Day. In celebration of this special day, I’m publishing the first of a series of images by Seattle artist Karen MacKenzie, who is working on an inspired and inspiring series of paintings incorporating astrological symbols with goddesses from different cultures. Please take a moment to check out her website (her prints are very reasonably priced and make great gifts). She’s currently working on Leo, perfectly represented by Egyptian goddess Sekhmet.

On Wednesday, the Sun conjoins retrograde Mercury, with the Moon void-of-course all day. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t felt much of a difference since Mercury changed motion a week ago. Maybe that’s because it has felt like one long Mercury retrograde period ever since Mars went into reverse in Virgo in late January. However, I do think we’ll notice the retrograde effect starting on Tuesday, and we may feel it even more when Mercury goes back into Pisces on Friday.

Chart for New Moon in Aries

Click on image to enlarge

The Moon enters Aries early Thursday in the United States, conjoins Mercury, and then a few hours later conjoins the Sun – otherwise known as the New Moon. The Moon aligns with Uranus a few hours later. Although the Sun-Uranus conjunction won’t be exact until Friday, you might start experiencing corresponding events immediately. How will you know if it’s a “New Moon-Uranus event?” Well, if it’s shocking, out of the blue, explosive, or otherwise totally disrupts your life, then it’s related to Uranus.

Remember, even positive changes can throw you for a loop. And I do believe that many of the changes that occur this week will be wonderfully positive. I say this because the grand trine involving Pluto, Jupiter, and Mars in earth signs is still active, and the Moon in Taurus will amplify the trine over the weekend. This is a great time to visualize what you want … and make sure you act on your intentions. A friend reminded me last week that when you take one step forward on your destined path, the universe will take five steps to meet you.

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

P.S. To everyone who has written and asked about the StarGuide Spring Forecast, I’m working on it now and will post a notice when it’s ready to order, in a day or two.

New Moon in Aries, April 3

© Daniel Boiteau for Dreamstime.com

The New Moon on April 3 belongs entirely to Mars. How will we experience this blast of pure energy, the violence of birth, the burst of a star being born?

I can’t think of another time when only one planet ruled an entire chart like this. Usually, two or three planets dominate a chart, sometimes more. At this New Moon, six of the nine planets will be in Mars-ruled Aries, and the three that aren’t – Venus, Saturn and Pluto – deposit to Mars. (It goes like this: Pluto is in Capricorn, which is ruled by Saturn, so Pluto goes to Saturn; Saturn in Libra goes to Venus, Libra’s ruler; Venus is in Pisces, ruled by Neptune; Neptune is in Aquarius, ruled by Uranus; Uranus is in Aries, ruled by Mars.)

Every beginning astrologer knows about Mars and Aries. Mars is the planet of war and anger, but he also confers high energy, raw sex appeal, and courage in the face of danger. Aries is the me-first, impulsive, “shoot first, ask questions later” sign. As the first sign of the zodiac, Aries is cardinal fire, the spark that initiates life. How we’ll experience that spark is the big question as Sunday approaches.

At 13°30′ Aries, the New Moon is square the solar eclipse at 13 degrees Capricorn on January 4 and the solar eclipse at 9°12′ Cancer on July 1 – the last eclipse in the Capricorn-Cancer series. If you didn’t notice any changes at the beginning of the year, you may get them now. The New Moon typically brings new beginnings and open doors, but any change that occurs now could happen so fast it makes your head spin (Aries rules the head). That’s the difference between a New Moon ruled by Saturn and a New Moon ruled by Aries.

Speaking of Saturn, he was square the eclipse in January and also will be square the eclipse in July. This time, he’s in a near-perfect opposition with the New Moon. Pluto at 7 degrees Capricorn forms a cardinal T-square, although it will be wider than the one we had last summer.

Friends and clients tell me that although they’re still encountering difficulties in circumstances that came to a head over the summer, they’re not struggling as hard as they were last year. I’ve attributed that to Saturn’s advance beyond the early degrees of Libra. At its peak, the 2010 T-square occurred at 0-4 degrees of the cardinal signs. Once Saturn moved on, the brick walls that had us so frustrated began to crumble.

They never did entirely go away, though, and we may experience some flashbacks at this New Moon. I’m hoping that it will be in the good sense; in other words, we’ll be able to make the breakthroughs we felt so close to last year and just couldn’t reach. So many of you wrote to me in frustration and distress, and I certainly had my share of it, too.

In an attempt to be optimistic, I’m also hopeful that Mercury retrograde will be helpful in revisiting unresolved issues. The ideal outcome would be to go back to the point at which we got hung up last year in order to make the breakthroughs that eluded us no matter what we did.

Indeed, the explosive energy of this New Moon may just blast through the last of the obstacles and take us to the new place that was so close yet always just out of reach. If you start getting the jitters or a situation begins spinning out of control, try to keep your eye on the prize. You know what it is!

For those who did manage to make a major breakthrough, this New Moon represents the next step. It may be too fast for comfort, but that’s the nature of this high-energy New Moon.

Now, I also have to mention the possibility that all this Mars energy is so intense that global hotspots around the world burst into flames, and people’s anger gets totally out of control. If you feel that happening to you, the best way to handle it is with vigorous exercise. You won’t want to sit still, that’s for sure.

Right after the New Moon, Mars conjoins Uranus. I don’t need to tell you what an explosive combination this is – especially with Uranus in Aries. The last time Mars and Uranus conjoined in Aries was in April 1934, with the Sun also in conjunction. Jupiter was in opposition and, as now, Pluto was at the apex of a cardinal T-square. On April 12 of that year, a few days before the conjunction was exact, researchers at the Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire clocked winds at 231 mph – the standing record for surface winds on earth. That’s not exactly an explosion, but we could safely classify it as an extraordinary high-energy event.

I guess you could say the winds of change are upon us, and man, are they blowing hard.

The Sabian Symbol** for the Sun and Moon at 13°30′ Aries is a serpent coiling near a man and a woman,” with the keyword REVELATION. This is the symbol of the union of the divine masculine, represented by Mars, with the divine feminine, represented by Venus. In occult studies, it pertains to the union of logic and intuition, the “sacred marriage.” I’ve written plenty here and on my old blog, The Pisces Chronicles, about the core wound of humanity being the split between the divine masculine and the divine feminine, and about the healing of this wound in our time.

As for the keyword REVELATION, that’s the meaning of “apocalypse.” Ruth recently wrote an excellent post about this, and I wrote a post on the Apocalypse seemingly ages ago on PiChron. You can find that article in my archives.

So, will this be an apocalyptic New Moon? I’m on the edge of my seat. Then, there’s no way I’ll be able to sit still through this, and you probably won’t, either.

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

P.S. Don’t forget to write your abundance check!

** From The Sabian Symbols in Astrology, by Dr. Marc Edmund Jones. The author, an astrologer, channeled this work in 1925 with the help of Elsie Wheeler, a gifted psychic. There’s one symbol one for each degree of the zodiac, and we can use them to gain insight into charts.

Weekly Forecast March 28: Mercury Retrograde, Mars Enters Aries

Monster solar flare. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this view of a powerful M3.6 Class solar flare during a 90-minute sun storm in February.

This week is potentially volatile. New doors open, with seemingly unlimited potential to move in new directions, but something or someone could get in the way, resulting in anger and conflict.

The overused cliché “one foot on the gas and one foot on the brakes” applies, but with the added complication of the person in the car behind us flipping us off and laying on the horn.

Some of us may feel a surge of electrifying energy so powerful we’re overwhelmed and totally disoriented – like overdosing on caffeine and sugar. This will be especially true the closer we get to the New Moon on Sunday, April 3. Do your best to stay centered and keep your bearings.

Globally, there are several ticking time bombs in the headlines. When you think about the circumstances that led to the past two world wars and the events that lit the fuse, it’s hard not to be concerned that we may be headed in that direction again. Regimes are failing in the Middle East, “allied forces” are bombing Libya, thousands of people are still missing in Japan, and the damaged nuclear reactor isn’t entirely under control. These events are so severe that other serious situations around the world are barely a blip in the news.

That’s the state of the world as we head into this week’s high-intensity astrological configuration.

On Monday, the Sun in Aries squares Pluto in Capricorn, just as Jupiter in Aries opposes Saturn in Libra. Although the degree between these two patterns is wide, they’re still close enough to constitute a cardinal T-square. That, I believe, is the signature behind the global turmoil. Outer planetary aspects like these are major considerations in world events, with Saturn representing government and military, Pluto representing wealth and the power it conveys, and Jupiter representing religious beliefs and banks. The Sun is associated with national leaders. With all of these quarters pitted against each other, it’s no surprise the world is such a mess right now.

In our personal lives, transits to planets in the natal chart carry more weight than aspects between transiting planets, but we nevertheless need to look at where these patterns fall in our charts, because if one planet in the T-square is transiting a natal planet, it means the others also are in hard aspect, and that changes the interpretation considerably. It also makes it extremely difficult to predict how things will turn out for you, because the range of possibilities is increased exponentially.

The one thing of which we can be relatively sure is that nothing is being handed to us on a silver platter. We’re all facing challenges of varying degrees, and even when these tests and trials are for the best – they build character, make us stronger, open doors, etcetera, etcetera – getting through them requires all of our strength and awareness.

On Tuesday, Mars at 27 Pisces squares the lunar nodes, which are very close to the Galactic Core. I wrote about this rare phenomenon in last week’s forecast. For the most part, I think it represented a shift in consciousness, a subtle but ultimately positive development. But no growth occurs without change, and change is disruptive by definition. When Mars reaches this degree, it could set off events that will bring you closer to your goals and desires – as well as the inevitable tests you have to go through first.

Mercury turns retrograde on Wednesday, at 23 degrees Aries. I’ve experienced events related to this retrograde already, which isn’t surprising, given the buildup of planets in Aries. As he moves backwards in the sky, he’ll make second passes with Jupiter, the Sun, and Mars over the next four weeks. Usually, the positive way to channel Mercury retrograde energy is to slow down, think things through, research and revision. However, I doubt those activities will be possible this time around, as we’ll be in a constant state of flux.

It’s hard to imagine how life could be moving any faster, but we’ll find out when Mars enters Aries on Saturday. I always like to point out the good side of Mars, which is a lot of energy to accomplish even the most difficult of tasks before us. I hope that will be the case, but I don’t think it’s realistic to think that there won’t be an increase in war and conflict, both globally and in our personal lives. Not only will Mars be in his own sign, but he’ll be “fed” by four other planets, including giant Jupiter. That’s a lot of anger and aggression.

Sunday is the highly charged New Moon at 13 Aries – very close to the Saturn-Jupiter opposition – and a conjunction between Mars and Uranus. I’ll try to write a post on the New Moon this week, but I’m still backlogged and am getting several new requests a day. (For those of you on the wait-list, please know that I’m working as diligently as I can to get to you as soon as I can.) For now, I’ll just stay that I see in this New Moon more potential for a giant leap in consciousness, especially among men.

Later in the day, Mars conjoins Uranus, a tense combination that in the past has coincided with literal explosions. Then, there’s so much of that going on already that it would be hard to attribute any increase in activity to a Mars-Uranus transit, not unless it’s something major and unrelated to current news.

Whenever there’s a lot of movement afoot, as there is now, it can be scary. Evolving as a species and birthing a new world is a turbulent business, requiring much love and courage.

Wishing you all plenty of both,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

Weekly Forecast April 12: New Moon in Aries, Mercury Retrograde

Baby Aries

Baby Aries. Sheep grazing in the pasture on Vashon Island, WA. Photo by Pat Paquette, all rights reserved.

It might seem a little strange this week, with New Moon beginnings pushing us forward, while Mercury retrograde urges us to go back and revise or reconsider.

When you think about it, though, these aren’t mutually exclusive activities. Sometimes making a fresh start requires going back over what we’ve done to see what worked and what didn’t. You can bet that I’m doing plenty of that here at RealAstrologers. Or, we might liken it to buying a house that was neglected by the previous owners. The first order of business is taking stock of what needs to be done and cleaning up the mess.

And so it goes. It’s not altogether unpleasant, provided we remain patient and do things in the right order. Trying to push ahead too soon will cost us even more time and energy later.

On Monday morning, the Moon in Pisces makes contact with the Saturn-Uranus opposition, reinforcing the message that we’ve got some old business to take care of before we can get on with our new venture. Even after entering Aries, the Moon is in her final waning phase for nearly two full days before Wednesday’s New Moon. This is a great time to clean up what’s on your plate. Just do it! You won’t want any of this stuff hanging over your head when you get your new marching orders.

As I wrote in my New Moon post on Saturday, there’s going to be a lot of activity, and change may come suddenly and without warning. Saturn’s return to Virgo will provide some stability, but it also reminds us of important details we overlooked in a previous undertaking. In a way, Mercury’s turn retrograde on Sunday (Saturday on the West Coast of the United States) may prove to be a blessing, as long as you abide by the Mercury retrograde “rules.”

They are, briefly: Don’t sign any contracts. Don’t make any major purchases, especially electronics or anything to do with transportation. If a critical piece of equipment breaks down and you have to replace it urgently, keep all of your receipts, because you may have to return it. If you’re traveling, be sure to confirm flights and hotel reservations, and allow yourself plenty of time to make connections. Expect delays. Missed phone calls and misunderstandings are typical. Usually, no one is to “blame,” and even if someone else does drop the ball, give them the benefit of the doubt.

Mercury turns retrograde at 12°37′ Taurus just after midnight EDT on Sunday, April 18. He stations direct at 2°39 Taurus on May 11.

There are some activities that actually go better during Mercury retrograde periods. Remember, Mercury rules communications and business negotiations, so editing, rewriting, and revising written work is often more efficient at this time. Renegotiating an existing contract for better terms would be fine, as would going back to work for a previous employer. Some clients also have told me that taking a vacation while Mercury is retrograde works well. Business trips tend not to go very smoothly.

Those are the major trends for this week, but we also have a couple of soft aspects on the weekend that should provide some comfort and relaxation.

On Saturday, Venus in Taurus sextiles Jupiter in Pisces, a lovely aspect for entertaining at home or celebrating with close friends. If you’re in a romantic partnership, make special plans just for the two of you. This is the quintessential “candlelight dinner for two” aspect, so make it count!

On Sunday, the Sun in Aries sextiles Neptune in Aquarius, fueling our desire to take an active part in helping others, protecting the environment, or doing something good for our local community. If nothing else, lend a hand to your next-door neighbor.

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

New Moon in Aries, April 14, 2010

New Moon, a sea change. © Algol/Dreamstime.com

Although the astrological year officially begins with the Sun’s entrance into Aries, the New Moon in Aries on April 14 is in many ways a much more powerful new beginning.

Just as the Full Moon on March 29 marked the midpoint between lunar eclipses, this New Moon marks the halfway point between the solar eclipse in Capricorn on January 14 and the upcoming solar eclipse in Cancer on July 11. What’s more, we’re now halfway through the Capricorn-Cancer eclipse series, and that means we’re beginning to see real signs of change in one or more areas of our lives. If you’re in doubt how these eclipses are playing out for you, you’ll know for sure as of this New Moon.

At 24°27″ Aries, the Sun and Moon are at the base of a Yod with Saturn at the apex. Neptune and Chiron conjunct in Aquarius form the other leg of the base. Saturn is retrograde and recently returned to Virgo. One possible effect of this configuration that comes immediately to mind is that the new healthcare program in the United States will be under intense scrutiny as the country struggles to make the required changes. There will be more political fallout for the Obama administration and the Democrats, too.

In our individual lives, healing processes that we’ve been going through for the past couple of years with Neptune conjunct Chiron finally are producing some practical results. For many of us, the healing has been internal, and this has had a significant, long-term impact on our external reality. It’s not just thoughts that become things. Feelings do, too. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself in a completely new reality within the next couple of weeks.

The base of the Yod is bisected by Jupiter and Uranus, which are approaching conjunction just as the planet of surprises and rebellion is about to make another opposition to Saturn. Jupiter does everything big, so you can pretty much count on a change that is sudden, totally out of the blue, and huge. It likely will be a big wham rather than arriving gradually, in a series of smaller developments. If there is political rebellion in this country or, for that matter, anywhere in the world, it will be explosive.

Mars, ruler of this New Moon, is in a wide, out-of-sign trine with Uranus, fueling rebellion and individual freedom. However, he’s inconjunct Pluto, suggesting an eventual backlash against any populist or rebel movements that crop up now.

Pluto also is at the apex of a T-square with Saturn and Uranus, but it’s no longer the cardinal T-square we’ve been reading so much about, and Pluto is retrograde for the next several months. For the moment, competing world powers are stepping apart from direct conflict and thinking about how to plan their next move. In our personal lives, we should get some temporary relief from any pressures corresponding to the Saturn-Pluto square. Again, what those are depends on your individual birth chart.

Ceres, meanwhile, is moving toward conjunction with Pluto, which I think is going to turn out to be a big deal. Remember, in mythology, Demeter (the Greek version of Roman Ceres) was one of the only gods who was able to change the rules of the underworld. She did this by using her own power, which was the capacity to destroy the planet if Hades and Zeus didn’t do her bidding. They had to take her seriously, or they wouldn’t have had a kingdom to rule. Something may happen very soon that sends a clear message that our economic structure will have to change, or we risk completely destroying our planetary ecosystems.

The Sabian Symbol** for the Sun and Moon at 24°27′ Aries is a double promise, with the keyword SENSIBILITY. I love this symbol, because it embodies what I’ve been writing all along about what it means to be spiritual. We are gaining conscious awareness of how the unseen energies in our universe flow through us. Our lives are the expression of these higher forces. We are their “works of art.”

The next step will be learning how to use these energies appropriately, for the benefit of all of humanity and the planet itself. The “double promise” is expanded consciousness plus the new ways of being that will be possible as a result.

These are wildly changing times. Do your best to keep your nerve.

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

UPDATE: You can read more about the New Moon in this week’s forecast.

** From The Sabian Symbols in Astrology, by Dr. Marc Edmond Jones. The author, an astrologer, channeled this work in the early 1920s. There’s one symbol one for each degree of the zodiac, and we can use them to gain insight into charts.

Aries New Moon – March 26, 2009

New Moon in AriesThe New Moon on March 26 at 6°08′ Aries is the first lunation of the astrological new year. With a stellium in Aries consisting of the Sun, Moon, Mercury, and Venus, we definitely get a sense that it’s time to get off our collective duffs and go for it!

The most important aspect to the luminaries is a square from Pluto in Capricorn. The square, or 90° aspect, is often regarded in a negative light, but it often presents us with opportunities to discern what is really happening. Bernadette Brady, in her book “Predictive Astrology, The Eagle and the Lark,” describes a square as forcing action in new areas and making it impossible to blame anybody effectively, so results stimulate actions rather than decisions.

In the case of the square between Aries and Capricorn – both cardinal signs with very different styles for taking action – Aries may have to acknowledge that it’s better to think before acting, while Capricorn must see the value in taking a risk now and then. We are at the very beginning of Pluto’s journey through Capricorn, and this New Moon is not only the beginning of the astrological new year but the first one activating Pluto. The issues brought to the surface now, both collectively and personally, are those we will be asked to work on for quite some time.

With both Mercury and Venus conjoining the New Moon, it would appear we will be called on account for snap decisions regarding values. In fact, the process of learning what is truly valuable in our lives and letting go of the rest is very consistent with Pluto in Capricorn. Learning how to live better with less is going to be an ongoing theme, so we might as well start now!

Mars, who rules Aries, is in gentle, slippery Pisces and semi-sextile retrograde Venus in Aries. Aggressive behaviors will not be very effective now. Choosing tact, patience and an indirect approach will be rewarded. In other words, instead of yelling at someone who doesn’t agree with you, try responding by first acknowledging their right to feel the way they do. This is a common technique taught to front-desk people everywhere to defuse angry patrons and clients. After Mars moves into Aries on April 23, joining a direct Venus in Aries, asserting ourselves will get a lot simpler.

An interesting relationship in this chart is the inconjunct between Jupiter in Aquarius and Saturn in Virgo. An inconjunct is an aspect always seeking balance but never quite finding it. Say Jupiter is promoting a wonderful clean energy program, guaranteed to benefit many people. That sounds like it would appeal to Virgo’s eco-friendly side, but because Saturn is representing Virgo, it responds with, “How are we going to pay for this?” This type of discussion is taking place from the boardroom to the family room under the influence of this aspect.

Neptune and Chiron continue to travel closely together, in a waxing semi-sextile with Uranus in Pisces. It’s as if there is a bell tolling in the background reminding us of what is truly important: We live on a small, lovely planet and we need to work on respecting that fact instead of ignoring it. The time has come to set aside our differences and celebrate unity and life.

The Sabian symbol for the New Moon at 7 Aries is, “a man successfully expressing himself in two worlds at once”, with the keyword PROFICIENCY. The question here is what compromises have been made to achieve this level of success and at whose expense? If we are in a position of authority (Pluto in Capricorn), are we sharing the benefits of our success beyond our immediate family (New Moon)? A good, decent person I used to work for failed badly in this regard and is now suffering the consequences.

Whenever Pluto aspects a New or Full Moon, it’s a good time to take stock of our obsessions and unreasonable expectations. This hasn’t happened since the New Moon in Capricorn in late December, so we may need a reminder to peel our fingers off of whomever or whatever we’ve become overly attached to. In this time of new beginnings, it is more important than ever to give each other room to breathe and grow.

Libra hates Venus Rxposted by Neith . . .

**Please read Pat’s weekly forecast for this week, March 23, for her thoughts about this curious week.

Of course, today is the day to write your New Moon abundance checks! Here’s how.