Tag Archives: Venus in Scorpio

Weekly Forecast October 20: Solar Eclipse in Scorpio, Mercury Direct

Brilliance of the Waning Light. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2014.

Brilliance of the Waning Light. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2014.

There have been many times in my life when I needed a big change but was afraid to take that leap until a replacement came along. But for me, at least, it never seemed to work out that way. I had to have the courage to jump without a safety net.

I’m sure it has been the same for many of you.

I have to confess that I very rarely jumped off the moving train on my own. More often, something (or someone) kicked me from behind. The fall can be that much worse when you’re taken by surprise and don’t have time to figure out the best way to land. Then again, even with forethought, you don’t know what’s ahead. Depending on how fast the train is moving, Continue reading

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Weekly Forecast September 30: New Moon in Libra, Sun Square Pluto

Weighing the Harvest. © Mafoto for Dreamstime.com

Weighing the Harvest. © Mafoto for Dreamstime.com

Astrologers have known for a long time that we were in for a difficult stretch between 2012 and 2015, so in some ways, the enormous pressure weighing on the world isn’t a big surprise.

We’ve also said that the pressure would force many positive changes on humanity, and that is indeed turning out to be the case. It’s hard to see the good when we’re being tossed about and struggling to survive (some more than others). Likewise, it can be hard to appreciate positive developments when they come at such an exorbitant price. But that is the nature of transformation, and it’s a very Plutonic concept. Suffering produces an alchemical reaction, and that is really what transformation is all about. It’s true for individuals, and it’s true for the collective.

Amidst the mass shootings, wars, and other tragedies, we are witnessing some stunning breakthroughs. In the past week, the international community managed to agree on a plan for the Syrian government to destroy its chemical arsenal. Syria earlier this month asked to join the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Its membership officially begins on October 14, four days before a lunar eclipse in Aries, the sign of war, with the Sun in Libra, the sign of peace.

Equally as remarkable, the leaders of the United States and Iran spoke for the first time since 1979. Although President Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani didn’t agree to a much-anticipated meeting at the United Nations on Tuesday, they spoke by telephone for about 15 minutes on Friday. Following the conversation, hopeful messages appeared in English on the Iranian president’s Twitter feed (the effusive tweets later were replaced with blander messages). Rouhani has a website in seven languages and a Facebook page, too. Talk about a “charm offensive.”

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned Putin’s 13-degree Libra Sun and its relation to the planetary signature underlying this summer’s extreme events. As it turns out, Rouhani has Venus at 13 degrees Libra. Libra is skilled in the art of compromise, and Venus in Libra disarms through charm. Rouhani’s Sun is at 19 degrees Scorpio, squaring natal Pluto. It’s a safe bet that the charm is serving the power agenda of a shrewd, calculating politician. Incidentally, Venus was at 19 degrees Scorpio during the telephone call between Rouhani and Obama. You gotta love astrology.

Rouhani and Putin, September 2013Comparing the charts, it appears that Rouhani and Putin genuinely like each other. Rouhani may even admire Putin, and they will find it easy to remain committed to one other. Obama and Putin also have an understanding, both with Moon in Gemini less than a degree apart (provided we have the right birth time for Putin). One might say they even come from the same “soul tribe,” and Putin’s lunar nodes on Obama’s Ascendant/Descendant further suggests that these two have been around the karmic block together a few times. Conversely, the relationship between Rouhani and Obama appears to be a flirtation, and Rouhani may end up becoming a thorn in Obama’s side. Looking at these three charts, along with when official meetings took place, I think it’s possible that Russia might have done some serious behind-the-scenes negotiating to patch up relations between the United States and Iran. I’d also bet my bottom dollar that major geopolitical shifts in the Middle East will come out of all of this, and it could be soon, given the coming eclipses and the rare conjunction of Mars the Warrior, Regulus the King, and comet ISON, discovered by a couple of Russians. Perhaps there’s even something symbolic in its invisibility to the naked eye. Talk about power-brokering behind the scenes…

There was another big breakthrough on Friday at the U.N, which announced that a new report shows that human impact on global climate change is “unequivocal.” If they’d only make a similar statement about Fukushima and get the international community involved in the cleanup. . .

As for Congress, it’s hard to say. Libra is the sign of compromise, and Venus, the ruler of this week’s New Moon, is in the seventh house of partnership in the chart cast for Washington, D.C. However, the New Moon forms a tight cardinal T-square with Uranus and Pluto, which turns compromise on its head. That said, there’s an “out” in the supportive sextile from Pluto at the apex of the T-square to Mercury, Saturn, and the North Node. Jupiter in the third house, while not closely involved in this formation, also could be a mitigating factor. The third house rules the media, Internet, and public information in general. It’s always helpful to remember that what politicians say for public consumption may have little to do with the horse-trading that goes on behind closed doors. It’s public posturing and political theater, and some of it (some people would argue most of it) is intended to distract the populace.

Given the high-stakes conflict indicated in this chart, it’s quite possible that failure to reach an agreement will cause a government shutdown. It has happened. If you’re up for some wonky reading, check out the Congressional Research Service report on what a government shutdown would mean. But it’s also possible that information could come to light that stabilizes the situation and prevents damage to an already limping economy. One can always hope.

There was a terrific article in The Guardian on Friday about Seymour Hersh, a Pulitzer-Prize winning reporter who broke the story about the My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War. Hersh was my hero in journalism school, and he’s still my hero for saying that 90 percent of editors in publishing should be fired. On Saturday, there was an article by Glenn Greenwald noting how the television networks distort the news. It bears repeating that the range of news sources available to anyone with an Internet connection broadens our ability to piece together what’s really going on. Of course, there’s also a lot of bad information out there. One needs to know how to judge the reliability of sources. That’s a task that will be made easier by Tuesday’s trine from Mercury in Scorpio to Neptune in Pisces. Watch the headlines for revelations of deep, dark secrets, possibly by a writer with a nose for sniffing out that sort of thing.

New Moon in Libra

Click on image to enlarge

Otherwise, the entire week is pretty much a lead-in to the New Moon, which is exact at 8:34 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Friday. On Tuesday, the Sun forms an exact square with Pluto. This is so not about compromise, even with the Sun in Libra. Depending on where the Sun and Pluto are in your chart, you may want to forego sensitive discussions, especially regarding work. In personal relationships, don’t push your point of view. It’s not like your bank account will shut down if you and your partner can’t agree on how to spend your money. Don’t let ego get in the way of compromise. Do you want to be “right,” or do you want to get the best deal possible?

On Thursday, the Sun opposes Uranus. Events may force a breakthrough of some kind, and new information could be part of the equation. If the Sun and Uranus make favorable angles to personal planets in your chart, sudden events a few days on either side of Thursday could be to your advantage.

The sextile between Mercury and Pluto is exact on Sunday, October 6. This is a good day all around for resolving conflicts through communications. Mercury is just a degree from the lunar North Node, which can indicate an event that is destined or that serves a significant purpose. This can apply to you personally as well as to the collective. The North Node currently is in Scorpio, sign of death, transformation, and rebirth.

Just over a month from now, there is a total eclipse of the Sun in Scorpio, conjunct Saturn, and with Mercury retrograde in Scorpio. This is intense, although I realize it’s hard to imagine how much more pressure we can bear. During a recent visit to my doctor, she told me that people are coming into her office in tears, at the end of their rope. That eclipse will square my Sun, with Saturn in a square by exact degree, so I’m feeling the pressure in a big way. In fact, I turned on my laptop yesterday only to discover that the keyboard died. I can get an external keyboard, but it was a reminder that my computer is reaching the end of its useful life, when I can least afford to buy a new one and when I suddenly have a flood of report orders. I’ve got a temporary solution rigged up, but it’s costing me time and energy.

For those of you who would like to order the StarGuide Fall 2013 forecast, my current turnaround time is about two weeks. To make up for the delay, I’m providing an extra couple of weeks of transits.

We’ve all got to hang in there. If we can make it through to mid-November, the pressure will lighten up — not entirely, but at least we’ll be able to breathe normally.

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

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast September 23: Venus Trine Jupiter, Mercury Enters Scorpio

Signs of Fall. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2013.

Signs of Fall. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2013.

If you feel like a wrung-out dishrag following last week’s tension, you’re not alone. Fortunately, we get a bit of a breather this week, and we might even witness a historic event that gives us some hope for humanity.

Given last week’s tense astrological aspects, the tragic shooting at the Washington Navy Yard wasn’t surprising, nor was it any wonder that investigators couldn’t find a motive. When someone cracks and goes off the deep end, they don’t have a “motive.” Perhaps the question investigators should be asking is why some people just quietly put a gun to their head, while others are driven to shoot randomly into a crowd.

I’ve written before about the mental health crisis in the United States (I can’t speak for other countries, but I imagine there are similar trends). The national suicide rate is increasing in the face of enormous stress. Much of it is financial. Homeless figures show that some people without homes actually have jobs, but their wages are so low that they can’t meet basic expenses. Readers outside the United States might be shocked to know that there is no state-sponsored healthcare here, many employers don’t provide health coverage, and the cost of medical care is prohibitive for those without insurance. The suicide rate is particularly high for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, who don’t receive adequate support. To add insult to injury, a recent study funded by the Defense Department says there is no link between combat and military suicides, but that soldiers who take their own lives were predisposed to mental health disorders.

Against that backdrop, the Republicans in Congress are threatening to shut down the government unless President Obama’s healthcare program is defunded, and they want to cut food stamps for the poor, too. It’s as though they’re itching for riots in the streets, which they’d no doubt respond to with police armed with tear gas and perhaps even lethal weapons. It’s possible this is just political theater, intended to divert public attention and divide people politically so they won’t start exercising their power. However, rioting in the streets is exactly the scenario astrologers have foreseen, given the Uranus-Pluto square and the various T-squares that form throughout the year. In fact, when last week’s shooting began, Mercury was conjunct the Ascendant, in a T-square with Uranus and Pluto. Mercury is the Messenger planet, and he’s in Libra, the sign of equality and justice. Mercury in Libra also represents mental balance.

The congressional budget fight will continue this week, and hopefully saner heads will prevail. Meanwhile, world leaders will gather at the United Nations in New York on Tuesday for a week-long debate on pressing global issues. Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, is scheduled to make his first speech, and he has declared his willingness to negotiate on Iran’s nuclear program. The United States and Israel have charged that Iran is developing nuclear weapons, and to counter the perceived threat, Israel receives billions of dollars in annual U.S. military aid. If that pretext no longer exists, dynamics in the Middle East will change. It isn’t yet clear whether President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry will meet with Rouhani; in the past, the U.S. delegation has walked out of speeches by Iran’s leaders. If they do meet, it could be a worthy legacy for Obama, especially given his aggressive stance on U.S. military strikes in Syria. Some observers are comparing an Obama meeting with Rouhani to Nixon’s 1972 trip to China. Speaking of Syria, it also will be a hot topic at the U.N. meeting.

Mercury remains in Libra for the rest of this week, so this is a good time for negotiating. With Venus in secretive Scorpio, there’s bound to be plenty of backroom wheeling and dealing, but it could come out quite well, as Venus forms a favorable trine with Jupiter on Thursday. Venus and Jupiter are the two key financial planets, so there’s a good chance that congressional leaders could reach a favorable agreement this week, too. Don’t count on hearing about it in the mainstream media, though. We’ll have to look elsewhere to try to find out what really happened, and even then, there’s a good chance it will remain a secret.

Depending on where Venus and Libra fall in your chart, you could stand to gain, too. Financial issues are the most likely outcome, but Venus also is the planet of love, and Jupiter is the planet of luck, so romantic relationships may blossom at this time. Again, it depends on where these planets are transiting your natal chart. As I mentioned in my mid-week post, I decided to go ahead with the StarGuide Fall 2013 forecast. I received several e-mails asking about it, and I know that many people are interested in knowing what might be in store, with two eclipses, another round of the Uranus-Pluto square, and Mercury retrograde – all within a few weeks of one another. I’m trying a new format that gives me the flexibility to provide more personal information. Because I’m writing more material from scratch, I also raised the price a little. As I said, I’m going to have to see how this goes. It’s a lot of writing, and it will take me longer to produce one report, which means I won’t be able to fulfill orders rapidly. If you want to try one of these new reports, be sure to order right away. When I get your e-mail, I’ll give you an ETA. In case you’d like to see what it looks like before you decide, I created a sample using the chart for Edward Snowden (who has a challenging time ahead).

The good feelings of Venus and Jupiter begin wearing off over the weekend, when Venus squares Mars (exact on Saturday, September 28). Still, I think the good will generated earlier in the week will carry through. The Moon is in Cancer from Thursday through Sunday, and on Saturday, she conjoins Jupiter and trines Venus, carrying forward another wave of that positive vibe. And anyway, the Venus-Mars square, while edgy, does have some welcome manifestations, primarily in romantic relationships. Sex is more urgent, raw, and primal. If that’s how you like it, plan on hooking up next Friday or Saturday night (or both!).

On Sunday (September 29), Mercury enters Scorpio, which is the sign he’ll be in when he turns retrograde on October 21. He enters the pre-retrograde shadow period on October 1, so it’s important to spend next week wrapping up paperwork, sending important correspondence, and backing up your computer data. If you’re a writer working on a major project, spend the next four weeks producing a draft, and then edit and revise while Mercury is in reverse (what it looks like from our perspective on Earth).

Pumpkin Boy. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2013.

Pumpkin Boy. © Osk Ingad Alden, 2013.

Some other activities are favored while Mercury is retrograde, especially when he’s in Scorpio. This is the marker for investigative research, digging into trash cans, old court cases, and other hidden places where important clues could be hiding. Back when I was a reporter in Washington, D.C., I had a reputation among government PR types as a conspiracy theorist. One wrote to my boss that I “never met a conspiracy I didn’t like.” That was mostly true, but I investigated every lead to confirm whether my theory was correct, and sometimes I found that it wasn’t – or that maybe it was, but I’d never find the proof, in which case we couldn’t go to press with it. Unfortunately, I wasn’t an astrologer back then and didn’t know that Mercury retrograde periods are great for going back over your information to find leads you might have missed. This will be all the more true with Mercury retrograde in Scorpio. It’s a good bet that we’ll discover more than one embarrassing government secret, and they could be whoppers.

Again, if you’d like to know where Mercury will be retrograde in your chart, you can find out in the new Fall 2013 edition of StarGuide.

That’s pretty much it for this week. Next week, we get another round of a cardinal T-square, so do make sure to take a bit of break this week and recharge your batteries for October.

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

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast September 9: Mars Square Saturn, Mercury Square Pluto

Second Battle of Homs, 1281.

Second Battle of Homs, 1281.

What strange times we live in.

I never thought I’d see the day when Republicans oppose Democrats clamoring for war, or when a United States president says he can do whatever he wants regardless of disapproval by Congress and an overwhelming majority of the American public – ironically, in a bid to punish a dictator. It would be funny if it weren’t for the possibility it could lead to a world war.

So much for Hope and Change. Then again, you can be certain that big change is on the way. And while it may not be what you had in mind, there is no stopping global geopolitical cycles. Even the superpowers can’t control the outcome. Fortunately, astrology can help us understand the underlying forces at work.

The “Arab Spring” uprisings began in late 2010 and rapidly spread throughout the Arab world, including Syria, as Uranus approached a square to Pluto. By August 2011, the square was close to exact, but then Uranus turned retrograde. Uranus represents rebellion, so it was predictable that the protests quieted somewhat (to the extent that one can predict anything when Uranus is involved). In Syria, however, President Bashar al-Assad maintained that the protests were instigated by foreigners, and he took swift and ruthless action to crack down on the opposition – a classic manifestation of Pluto in Capricorn. In July 2012, not long after the first exact Uranus-Pluto square, the Red Cross declared that the Syrian uprising had escalated to a civil war. A few days later, opposition forces bombed the National Security headquarters in Damascus, killing several high-level officials. Assad’s brother reportedly lost his left leg and use of his left arm.

Assad’s claim that foreign interests instigated the protests is doubtful. There was legitimate protest against his government’s repressive policies. Still, it didn’t take long for the opposition to be hijacked by outside forces, so he wasn’t entirely wrong. It’s no secret that the CIA was involved, along with Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which is financing the rebel coalition and sending arms. We also know that there are more sinister groups fighting with the rebels, including al-Qaeda mercenaries. They are said to be far more effective than the army of the official opposition, due to their brutality. What we don’t know for sure is whether they, too, are supported by the CIA and the Saudis. The possible reasons for CIA involvement are complicated and beyond the scope of this article, but I’ll provide some links below (and, as usual, invite you all to add to the list).

We don’t know Assad’s birth time, but even without it, one clearly sees a Plutonian personality, complicated by a stubborn refusal to compromise, especially not with those who are a threat to his survival, real or imagined. In another bit of irony – uncanny, actually – Assad was seen as the Hope and Change president when he inherited the notoriously repressive government of his father in 2000. But the people were quickly disappointed when the new boss turned out to be not much different than the old boss.

What I find particularly interesting about Assad’s chart is how it fits into the current astrological pattern. He was born during the Uranus-Pluto conjunction of the mid-1960s (on September 11, no less). As I’ve noted several times, that was the beginning of the cycle that is now reaching a crisis point with the Uranus-Pluto square, which is exact seven times between 2012 and 2015. Not only does Assad have Uranus and Pluto conjunct, but both conjoin his Sun. A Sun-Pluto personality is controlling, to say the least. Assad’s militant anti-West, anti-imperialist stance can be attributed to this triple conjunction. Virgo is an astute political observer and gets his facts straight, but controlling information is part of Sun-Pluto’s power play.

Bashar al-Assad

Click on image to enlarge

Opposite this grouping, we find a conjunction of Saturn, Chiron, and the Moon in Pisces (without a birth time, we don’t know the exact degree). There are many ways to interpret this, but the first thing that comes to my mind is his family heritage, with karmic wounds of being a persecuted religious minority. Although both groupings have an out in the Mars-Neptune conjunction, this is a somewhat dark aspect, possibly accounting for his paranoid need for secrecy and control of the media. He does have a nice trine from Venus in Libra to Jupiter in Gemini – a good bit of luck and perhaps the one ray of hope that he is willing and able to compromise. But it’s very clear, with a chart like this, that he will not even consider negotiating with the current opposition coalition, which is demanding that he step down as a precondition to attending peace talks in Geneva.

President Obama is overall more likely to compromise, but not now, given current transits to his natal chart. Obama is right in the thick of Monday’s Mars-Saturn square. As he prepares to make his case to the nation in a speech on Tuesday, Saturn is approaching a square with his Sun, a marker for obstacles and constraints, which is indeed what we’re seeing. Mars, meanwhile, is about to conjoin his Sun, and the Sun is conjunct his natal Mars at the same time – a double Sun-Mars conjunction. There’s no doubt that he’ll speak forcefully, but this is a hot-headed transit with an inflated sense of confidence. Saturn is transiting Obama’s ninth house, a favorable placement provided that one remains in learning mode and doesn’t assume he has all the answers before completing the curriculum. To do so can bring one’s downfall, and the ninth house has legal implications. Note also that Saturn and the lunar North Node are conjunct Obama’s natal Neptune. There is an opportunity here for him to return to his ideals. It is often the case that when we stray too far from our purpose in life, we run into roadblocks that force us to reset our inner compass, and usually not in a manner that is convenient or comfortable. A defeat in Congress could be the best thing to happen to Obama. It just might save him from himself.

In last week’s forecast, I mentioned that the New Moon chart for Washington indicated an animated debate among the public. That indeed has been the case. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to see record numbers of people calling and writing to their elected officials. For many, it’s a question of tending to our own pressing needs first. But many of us don’t want to cause further suffering for the Syrian people, and we don’t buy the twisted argument that bombing their country will advance the cause of freedom and democracy. People aren’t buying the same old lies anymore, and an astonishing number realize this is a proxy war. The backlash has been so furious that we may be heading for our own American Spring.

The national conversation continues, but with Mercury in Libra as of Monday. Facts and details will be less important than a sense of justice. Obama and his advisers have been seeking to convince the public that Assad should be punished for his crimes, but others are calling for a fair and impartial court to determine who used chemical weapons and what should be done about it. Mercury in Libra will cover every pro and con before weighing the evidence.

Venus, ruler of Libra, remains in her home sign until Wednesday and then enters Scorpio. Whatever we may be talking about publicly, there will be a lot of backroom deals being made – not that you need an astrologer to tell you that, but it bears repeating that those with ulterior motives are going to a whole lot of trouble to divert attention and keep the populace under control.

Mercury squares Pluto on Saturday and opposes Uranus on Sunday (September 14-15). Lies can be repeated over and over, and eventually people will believe them. But that’s not a given in this new, untested environment of an informed and irate public. People aren’t relying on the mainstream media anymore, either, because they know they’re being handed rewritten press releases. Searching for reliable information is taking us to some strange and unfamiliar places. Last week, for the first time, I visited the Russian Times website. I grew up in the Cold War, when we dove under the desk for air-raid drills. Everyone knew Pravda was the Soviet propaganda machine. How times have changed. Not that RT is any less biased than The Washington Post or Fox News, but it’s a place to read stories you won’t find in the Western media. Mercury in a T-square with Uranus and Pluto speaks truth to power. Under a trine from Mars in Leo to Uranus on Saturday, we can find the courage to speak up and do things we might never have imagined we were capable of.

Mars-Uranus connections also can signal unexpected developments, especially with Uranus in Mars-ruled Aries. And with Mars squaring Saturn, Uranus provides the “outlet,” so impulsive actions in response to being boxed in are possible. This could be the case for Obama, considering that his Sun is being transited by Mars, Saturn, and Uranus at the same time.

In our personal lives, the Mars-Saturn square could manifest as a certain amount of frustration. This will be particularly true if you’re being overpowered by someone else. Hauling off and telling the boss to go to hell probably isn’t a good idea. Mercury in Libra reminds us to stop, count to ten, and think the situation through. If you do need to address a slight or injustice, bring it up, but don’t push until next week. The same goes for personal relationships. Sometimes getting everything out of your system is a good strategy, but this week it’s not likely to get you anything but more heartache.

The only other aspect this week I haven’t mentioned is the trine from Venus to Neptune on Saturday, late Friday in Western time zones. This is a good aspect for sexual intimacy and breaking down the emotional boundaries that prevent spiritual bonding. Friendships can benefit, too. I can’t think of a better aspect for going out for drinks with a best friend and sharing your deepest secrets.

Looking ahead, we’re steadily moving toward the next Uranus-Pluto square, which is exact on November 1 – two days before a solar eclipse conjunct Saturn in Scorpio. Developments in Syria are a run-up to this turbulent time period. Whether or not Obama calls for air strikes on Syria, the next two months are likely to be nerve-wracking. I do believe that widespread public protests will change the course of history, but not necessarily by preventing our government from military aggression against a country that has not attacked us. That train has left the station, and it seems to me that the powers involved have too much at stake to just drop their toys and go home. From an astrologer’s perspective, it’s highly unlikely that we’ll sail through a Uranus-Pluto square without incident.

Comet ISON, April 10, 2013. NASA, ESA, J.-Y. Li (Planetary Science Institute)

Comet ISON, April 10, 2013. NASA, ESA, J.-Y. Li (Planetary Science Institute)


There’s another interesting phenomenon coming up that could provide a hint of things to come. Comet ISON is now within view in the Northern Hemisphere. You need a telescope to see it, and early observers say it isn’t exhibiting any of the “comet of the century” dazzle they were hoping for. That might change, though, and it’s even possible ISON will be visible during the day in late November.

Ray Merriman made some interesting comments in his forecast this week about comets as harbingers of the fall of a leader or shift in power. We will see both if Assad is forced out, and I think it’s possible he will be, given the “signs in the sky.” ISON currently is close to Mars, planet of war. By the end of the month, they will be even closer as they move in unison into the constellation of Leo. Asad, also spelled Assad, means “lion” in Arabic. President Assad’s grandfather earned the nickname for his activities during the French occupation and adopted it as his family surname.

In October, ISON and Mars begin moving toward conjunction with Regulus, a bright star in Leo. Regulus, the “heart of the lion,” is one of the four royal stars of Persia and considered since ancient times to be a sign of the king. The conjunction is closest on October 17, the day before a lunar eclipse in Mars-ruled Aries. Even though ISON probably won’t be visible, an eclipse with a comet conjunct Mars and Regulus seems to be an overwhelming message that someone’s going down. I suppose it could Obama, who’s a Leo. ISON was discovered in Russia, home to the president’s nemesis Vladimir Putin. Still, I sense something bigger. Pluto currently is conjunct the Sun in Syria’s chart by exact degree, where it will come out of retrograde next week. A Pluto-Sun conjunction strongly suggests destruction in order to be transformed, and the Sun in a country chart represents the leader. It’s hard to imagine at this point how such a transformation could take place without a change of leadership.

Here are some of my favorite links for this week:

Consortium News
This site was started by a former Associated Press reporter who broke many Iran-Contra stories. There are several good stories on Syria. Take your pick.

Saudi intelligence chief with ties to CIA and Bush works to build support to topple Assad

Syrian officials worried more than a year ago that rebels would stage a chemical weapons attack and pin it on the government

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

© Pat Paquette, RealAstrologers.com, 2013.

Weekly Forecast November 19: Sun Enters Sagittarius, Mars Square Uranus

Pallas and Centaur, Sandro Botticelli, c. 1482

We’re in something of a twilight zone this week, between eclipses and with Mercury retrograde in secretive Scorpio. Certainly some of the news headlines have been surreal.

But we do get out of deep, dark Scorpio territory just a little bit with the Sun’s entry in Sagittarius – not that the party sign doesn’t have its dark side, too.

The constellation Sagittarius as a centaur with a bow and arrow is very old, dating at least as far back as ancient Mesopotamia. Babylonian astrologers depicted him as a centaur-like god with wings and two heads, one of a man and the other of a panther. You could say he had a third “head,” a very prominent male member. In any case, this image symbolized the dual nature of humans. We’re capable of being civilized, wise, and consciously evolved, but deep within us lies a primal, animal nature – the shadow side. Interestingly, the Mesopotamian centaur figure has a Scorpion’s tail.

In Greek mythology, the centaurs were a savage race known for getting drunk and going on wild rampages. So the story goes, they were invited to a wedding and immediately proceeded to drink too much, rape the female guests, and carry off the bride. In retribution, they were slain by Theseus of Minotaur fame, who, fortunately for the bride’s father, was among the wedding guests.

Now, you’re going to love this: One of the rapacious centaurs at the wedding was named Petraios, whose name in Latin is Petraeus – he of the rocks. Or maybe, we should say, “on the rocks.” I mean, how much of a synchronicity is this? Among the hottest news in the past two weeks was the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, forced to step down following the exposure of an extramarital affair with his buff biographer, Paula Broadwell. Prior to becoming head of the nation’s top spy agency, Petraeus, a four-star general, led rampages in Iraq and Afghanistan. Dual nature of humanity, indeed. As if facing Mrs. Petraeus isn’t punishment enough, Congress is grilling him about his apparent lies and cover-up of what really happened in Benghazi, which by some accounts was a CIA base disguised as a consulate. Fat chance we’ll get the truth on that. Then again, with Mercury retrograde in Sagittarius and Scorpio, perhaps the truth will “accidentally” slip out after Mercury turns direct on November 26.

Another bit of trivia: Petraeus and Broadwell are both Scorpios, with birthdays less than a week before the solar eclipse on November 13. Frankly, I think these two are soul mates. Even without their birth times, their charts tell me that they were destined to cross paths, and their “fall from grace” may have implications for the collective beyond the sordid media soap opera. At the very least, it speaks to our liminal state.

The Sun enters Sagittarius on Wednesday, with Venus entering Scorpio a few hours later. As I was saying, we’re still on the Dark Side. The love nature of Venus and the obsessed, extreme nature of Pluto aren’t a happy combination. Think jealousy, crimes of passion, and fatal attraction. Of course, Venus in Scorpio also has her very sexy side. But it’s sexy in part because it’s so dangerous. Like James Bond women. Throughout the week, Venus approaches conjunction with Saturn. More about that in a minute…

On Thursday, Thanksgiving in the United States, the Sun and Venus aspect Neptune. I have a feeling these two aspects are going to cancel each other out, so that the Sun-Neptune square won’t be so discouraging and the Venus-Neptune trine won’t be as dreamy. Do keep in mind, though, that with Mercury retrograde, misunderstandings happen more than usual, and Neptune represents confusion – in this case, probably due to too much wine with dinner. Plan ahead by having some engaging DVDs on hand. If you decide to go to a movie at the theater, I highly recommend Cloud Atlas. I saw it last week and was deeply moved. My only explanation for why it got savaged by critics is that they didn’t get it.

On Friday, Mars squares Uranus. This configuration alone can be explosive, but with Uranus in Mars-ruled Aries, in a square with Pluto and conjunct the Moon, it’s hide-under-the-bed time. Or is it? Mars also is sextile Saturn, with Venus approaching conjunction. Moreover, Saturn and Pluto are in mutual reception. This seems to me to be a major game-changer – how, exactly, it’s hard to say, because we’ve never experienced this configuration in our lifetime. I have some thoughts about this, but I’m going to save them for next week, when the alignments are exact.

Both Venus and Mars form soft aspects to Chiron from Friday through Sunday. Chiron was also a centaur. He overcame his savage nature and went on to become a wise healer and mentor to Greek heroes, but suffered greatly, in life and in death. With Venus and Mars in aspect to Chiron over the weekend, we have an opening to see our fundamental wounds with clarity and compassion, and to adopt the courage and discipline to move forward, even though we might fear that our wounds leave us vulnerable.

The day after Thanksgiving is also known as Black Friday, when retailers make up for slow sales during the rest of the year. With Saturn and Pluto in mutual reception and Jupiter retrograde, I think they’re going to be disappointed. Anyway, if you use astrology as a tool for timing, you know better than to shop for large-ticket items while Mercury is retrograde. I’d wait for the January sales. With Jupiter returning direct at the end of January, we may find some exceptionally good bargains.

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

Weekly Forecast October 3: Venus Enters Scorpio

© Pat Paquette, 2011

October is here, and we’re already at the first quarter Moon. Did someone hit the fast-forward button?

Fortunately, this week should be calmer on most fronts.

Last week was a wild ride indeed, culminating with mass arrests in the anti-Wall Street protest in New York. There is no question that the protests reflect the building Uranus-Pluto square, which was part of a strong cardinal T-square with last Tuesday’s New Moon in Libra. It’s no surprise that greedy financial corporations are the target of the unrest, nor was the swift police response unanticipated. It’s exactly what we’d expect from Pluto in Capricorn.

The chart for the march tells an interesting story. According to news reports, the march began around 3:30 p.m. in downtown Manhattan, near the former World Trade Center. In addition to the Uranus-Pluto square, the chart (see below) shows a tight Yod with the Sun and Moon at the base and retrograde Jupiter in Taurus at the apex – the planet at the apex bears the pressure. In mundane astrology, both Jupiter and Taurus are associated with the nation’s wealth and financial institutions. Taurus rules the stock exchange, money markets, and trade. Note that Jupiter is in the third house, which rules communications and traffic flow. Protesters were arrested when they blocked traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge.

Wall Street Protest

Click on image to enlarge

As for how the protest ties into the bigger picture of social upheaval and crackdown by authorities, note the trine (blue line) from Pluto at the apex of the T-square to Jupiter. Normally, we’d consider this trine past its prime, but Jupiter is retrograde and on its way toward two exact alignments with Pluto next month and again in March 2012. As much unrest as there has been in the world in the past year, we’re barely seeing the tip of iceberg.

Back to this week, we start out with the first-quarter Moon in Capricorn, skimming through all the critical T-square degrees of last week’s New Moon. Watch for an event or situation that moves your forward another step or two along your path. If you’re still looking for a new direction, you may get closer to finding it. Next week’s Full Moon brings an ending, resolution, or culmination to new endeavors or projects you started last week. If you want to know more about how this lunar cycle is affecting you personally, look at where 4 degrees Libra and 18 degrees Aries fall in your chart. Or, you can order your StarGuide October forecast, which will tell you what’s happening in your chart.

Otherwise, this week’s transits are fairly tame. Mercury conjoins Saturn on Thursday, making it a great day for tasks requiring intense focus and concentration. You can be detached, objective, and balanced in your outlook, which lends itself to certain kinds of communications and written projects.

On Friday, Venus in Libra trines Neptune. Venus-Neptune aspects often are described in terms of “rose-colored glasses,” and there may be some of that here, with Neptune in idealistic Aquarius. But the collective longing for fairness, justice and equality for everyone is not a pipedream. We can begin effecting the change we desire by making sure we are fair in our own dealings with others and by understanding how we are all connected.

On Sunday, Venus enters Scorpio and trades her robe of justice for a sexy black dress. There is nothing balanced or detached about Venus in Scorpio. Depending on where she is transiting your chart, you may need to be mindful of obsessive thoughts and a desire to possess. Then, these traits sure make a better Hollywood film …

Later Sunday, Venus trines Chiron in Pisces, reflecting the healing qualities of physical intimacy. Sex as a vehicle to higher consciousness is a technique that has been practiced for many millennia. It can be a way to access deeply buried memories and even past lives. If this is something you’re interested in, just take note of what comes up for you Sunday night.

For me, it’s back to the books. However, I do have a limited amount of time for reports and consultations, so don’t be shy about contacting me if you’re in need of some guidance.

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

Weekly Forecast January 3:Jupiter Conjunct Uranus, Solar Eclipse in Capricorn

We don't often get such clear weather in Seattle in the winter, but this is what I've been treated to off my deck for the past week. © Pat Paquette, 2010.

Party’s over! It’s back on the treadmill – figuratively and literally – and time to start figuring out how you’re going to keep up and make new plans at the same time.

And that’s probably what the entire year is going to be like. Many of us found a new groove in 2010, but getting in it, staying in it, and building momentum was a problem. We can do that in 2011, starting this week.

The Moon enters serious Capricorn on Monday and immediately conjoins Pluto. Right there, you’ve got a reminder of events that took place under the cardinal T-square over the summer. On Tuesday, the Moon eclipses the Sun at 13 degrees Cap, the first of six eclipses this year. For details, check out my New Moon post last week.

Several other transits make Tuesday a big day. In addition to the eclipse, Jupiter meets Uranus for the third and last time before heading back into Aries later this month. Talk about momentum! These two made up a powerful leg of the T-square over the summer, and we might have experienced breakthroughs back then were it not for Saturn standing in the way. Then, we might want to be grateful for that. If Saturn hadn’t supplied the brakes, the effect might have been like skiing down a steep, ice-covered slope with no poles.

With Jupiter and Uranus both at the end of mutable Pisces, we can expect a rush of last-minute changes that position us for success in our goals. The pieces are all falling into place, and rapidly.

We also need to include Neptune in this aspect. Not only is he in mutual reception with Uranus, but he’s the modern ruler of Pisces. Often, what holds us back is some aspect within ourselves that hasn’t yet been healed, which in turn keeps us from tapping into the part of our being that is pure energy. That’s the part of ourselves that’s connected to everything, including what some call the “God” force. Whatever you want to call it, it’s where healing takes place – “heal” being from the same Latin root as “whole.”

Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune all get contact from Venus on Tuesday, which tells me that love and relationships are a major part of our emerging wholeness. How can it be otherwise? Connections, by definition, are relationships. Planetary aspects are relationships. There is no movement without relationships. As we gain momentum, our relationships will grow and change, too.

On Wednesday, Venus squares Chiron. Alone, this might indicate a painful experience in love, but with the interplay of the other planets, I see this more as a reminder. Moreover, Chiron in air sign Aquarius suggests that the pain may be in our collective memory. It’s always good to be aware of these things, because then we can release them or, at the very least, accept and embrace them as part of our identity.

There aren’t any other major planetary aspects mid-week, but we’ll be plenty busy in the wake of the eclipse.

Friday is a mixed bag, with Venus entering Sagittarius and the Sun squaring Saturn. Sun-Saturn contacts can feel heavy, and you may feel the effects all week. Still, I think the heaviness may be more on the order of a tough physical trainer or coach who tries to goad you into exceeding your self-imposed limits. He may seem cruel at the time, but when you accomplish more than you ever thought you could, you thank him.

Venus in Sagittarius is the bright spot of the week. Venus normally spends three to four weeks in a sign, but because of her retrograde phase, she has been in her detriment in Scorpio for four whole months. Although the party’s over for now, we’ll at least have some fun and joy in our lives.

Don’t forget to laugh! It’s a great way to stay balanced in the face of stressful change. Indeed, it might be able to help you enjoy the thrill of the ride.

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

New Moon Solar Eclipse in Capricorn, January 4, 2011

Solar eclipse in January 2010, photographed in Manila, Philippines, by Bullit Marquez for The Associated Press.

It’s déjà vu all over again.

The first lunation of 2011 is a New Moon solar eclipse in Capricorn – just as it was in 2010. And, once again, it’s symbolic of an extraordinary year. Not only will we have another buildup in cardinal signs, but 2011 is a rare six-eclipse year.

At 13 degrees Capricorn, the eclipse on January 4 is only partial, and it’s far removed from a T-square. Still, it’s square Saturn, and that does suggest some tension. Indeed, it may mirror situations and circumstances of the Mars-Saturn square occurring today (December 29).

As I wrote in my weekly forecast, there may be a silver lining in this conflicting aspect, as we’ll be pushed to do things we’ve been putting off, whether due to fear, laziness, or not wanting the hassle. You can put things off only so long before problems start compounding. The key phrase for this eclipse may well be, “Do what you gotta do.”

A little effort will go a long way, too. Mercury is direct and moving steadily forward, and all other planets are direct. It’s like driving down the main drag and hitting every green light. To do that, though, you have to get the timing right – not too fast, not too slow. This won’t be a time for blowing through a mountain of work in record speed. Rather, you’ll get everything done by pacing yourself and staying focused.

With Mercury in Sagittarius, we may find it more useful to focus on the big picture and not get caught up in details. Still, if you’re doing detailed work, you’ll need to take care not to miss small mistakes – yet another reason to work at a steady pace. This applies to driving, too. If you’re going to be late for an appointment, don’t speed up and take risks. Simply accept that you’re going to be late. It happens.

In any case, Saturn clearly is in charge of this eclipse, with the Sun, Moon, Pluto and Mars in Capricorn, the sign Saturn rules. Saturn himself is exalted in Libra, which is why I think the square is going to manifest more as tension that pushes us to move mountains rather than the kind of stress that puts us on overload and takes a few years off our lives, with nothing to show for it.

There’s another configuration in the eclipse chart that has nothing to do with Saturn and is quite interesting. Venus, who is now past her post-retrograde shadow phase and in new territory, makes a perfect square with Neptune and Chiron in Aquarius, and she also makes a very tight trine with Uranus and Jupiter, which are exactly conjoined in Pisces. Neptune and Uranus have remained in a close semi-sextile over the winter, and they’re in their last few months of mutual reception, until Uranus re-enters Aries in March.

There’s been so much going on this year with the cardinal T-square that we haven’t given a lot of attention to the mutual reception. But it has been an undercurrent, running through the T-square and everything we do. Neptune and Chiron represent healing on the collective level. But you can’t heal society unless and until you heal the individuals within it, and that’s where Uranus in Pisces comes in.

I’ve written a lot about the conjunction of Uranus and Jupiter as indicators of major breakthroughs, but what is the source of these successes? As individuals, we’re awakening to higher consciousness. Uranus is sometimes called the “Awakener,” and Jupiter is associated with expanding the mind and, thus, spiritual advancement.

With Venus in close contact with these four bodies, we’d have to conclude that relationships are a big part of our awakening. Many clients over the past several months have come to me with questions about soul mates, or people they suspect they have a karmic connection with. I believe this to be absolutely the case. More and more of us are encountering souls we have known or will know in other lives. Whether we’re meeting them because we’re awakening, or we’re awakening as a result of meeting them, who can say? And does it really even matter?

Eclipses are windows on time, and with six eclipses in 2011, there will be lots of opportunities to sense what’s beyond the “reality” we see with our eyes.

The Sabian Symbol** for the Sun and Moon at 13°39′ Capricorn is an ancient bas-relief carved in granite, with the keyword FOUNDATION. This symbol is about the limitless potential in every moment. Put another way, you attract what you focus on and give energy to. If you intentionally place your thoughts and actions in a given direction, this is where you’ll go, by hook or by crook.

When our perception of the world changes, our external reality shifts to match it. Saturn, the lord of time, represents the process by which that reality comes into being.

Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat

P.S. Speaking of making your own reality, 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 November 29:Venus Enters Scorpio, Uranus Direct

© Pat Paquette, 2010.

So much for merry Sagittarius.

Some kind of chaos has been unleashed in the past week, and I’d place my bets on Mercury crossing the final degrees of Sagittarius, which he’ll visit twice more in December as he moves through a retrograde phase. At the same time, troublemaker Mars is moving through these same degrees.

The last few degrees of the mutable signs and first few degrees of the cardinal signs have been activated by the T-square over the past year, and it’s as though Mercury and Mars have been moving through a minefield as they head toward a fateful conjunction with Pluto. How many degrees should be included is anybody’s guess, but for sure, I’d say from the Galactic Center at 27 degrees Sagittarius to about 5 degrees Capricorn, where we had an intense lunar eclipse in late June.

Meanwhile, the lunar North Node is moving backward across the degrees that Pluto occupied during the height of the cardinal T-square this summer.

So what has happened in the past week? Ireland went bankrupt, United States warships are off the coast of North Korea, and WikiLeaks released hundreds of thousands more confidential documents that, at the very least, will complicate international diplomacy. Protests and police crackdowns marred elections in Haiti and Egypt. Full body scanners in U.S. airports almost set off a riot among holiday travelers, emphasis on almost. It’s hard to know what would get U.S. citizens to rebel against ever-increasing encroachment on our constitutional rights.

It’s all got the fingerprints of Pluto on it. Oh … and as if all of that weren’t bad enough, Sarah Palin and Barbara Bush are insulting each other’s ancestry.

The next few weeks are going to be like this, so you might want to put up the deflector shields. Of course, that means you won’t be able to use the transporter.

This week starts out with a square from Mars to Jupiter in Pisces on Monday. You’ll recall that the T-square was in all cardinal signs for a limited time, because Jupiter, Uranus, and Saturn went back and forth between cardinal (Aries and Libra) and mutable signs (Pisces and Virgo). On Friday, Mars squares Uranus, which is stationed and about to return direct at the New Moon. Mars often acts as a trigger to set off the energies of major transits. It’s a fair bet that we’ll experience more “T-square events” in the next three weeks.

Also on Monday, Venus re-enters Scorpio. Between now and December 21, the end of her post-retrograde shadow period, we’ll be processing our experience during her retrograde, from October 8 to November 18. Expect developments in relationships and, to some extent, finances and social situations. Venus also is the planet of diplomacy, so it’s interesting that the WikiLeaks release occurred as Venus is about to return to Scorpio, the sign of secrecy and backroom power brokering.

The Moon enters Libra on Tuesday and immediately forms a square with Pluto, just as Mercury enters Capricorn. Together, these transits add to the energy activating the cardinal T-square degrees. Serious Capricorn isn’t the most fun sign for Mercury, but given other developments, some careful, critical thinking wouldn’t be a bad thing.

Mercury sextiles Venus on Wednesday. If you need to have a serious discussion with a romantic partner or a good friend, this is a good time to do it, and you can rely on any promises or commitments you get.

Mars sextiles Neptune and Chiron on Thursday and Friday. The truth can hurt, or it can set you free. On this day, it should be healing. That won’t be the case later on Friday, when Mars squares Uranus. This combination is volatile, and depending where they are in your chart, you may need to keep yourself surrounded with the deflector shields for a couple of days on either side of this transit. Mars in Sagittarius is speedy and corresponds to traffic. With Uranus about to go direct, this pent-up energy could release so fast that it manifests as a serious accident. Do be careful if you’re driving and observe the posted speed limits. Watch for deer and other wildlife, too (wild critters fall under the provenance of Sagittarius).

The week culminates in Sunday’s New Moon at 13 degrees Sagittarius. It promises to be another whopper. I’ve started my analysis and will post a complete article in a day or two, so watch this space. A few hours after the New Moon, Mercury conjoins Pluto and Uranus returns direct. “Chaos” doesn’t even begin to describe it…

I leave you with a video of our winter storm in Seattle earlier this week. Some people managed to find the silver lining.

Sliding on Kite Hill

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

Weekly Forecast November 22: Sun in Sagittarius

© Meg380/Dreamstime.com

This week has a very different feel to it, with the Sun entering merry Sagittarius on Monday and Jupiter now direct.

It’s good timing, too, as we head into a holiday week in the United States and our biggest food party of the year. Our traditional main dish originally was a wild bird, and hunting is a very Sagittarian activity. I recall from childhood that we always had to eat early, because Thanksgiving was the first day of deer season and the menfolk were having primal urges to go out in the woods and shoot dinner.

Unfortunately, we aren’t entirely out of the heaviness of Scorpio and won’t be for awhile. Although Venus is back in Libra, she’ll re-enter Scorpio next week, and we’ll be processing her lessons until she returns to 13°13′ Scorpio, the degree at which she went retrograde on October 8. As it so happens, the day she leaves her post-retrograde shadow will be December 21, the winter solstice and start of a new series of eclipses in Gemini and Sagittarius.

We’re also still in the wake of Sunday’s powerful Full Moon in Taurus, which may continue to work its “magic” through the entire week and possibly until the New Moon on December 5. A shift has taken place, and now we need to let the dust settle to see what has manifested.

For the first two days of this week, the Moon is in Gemini. On Tuesday, she opposes Mercury and Mars, recently conjunct in Sagittarius. Some of you probably had “words” over the weekend, and I know at least one person who had an accident. If that’s your situation, this week doesn’t look good for ironing out the wrinkles until Saturday or Sunday. Next week should be better.

The Moon enters her own sign of Cancer on Wednesday and remains there through Friday. Cancer is the sign of home, mother, comfort food, and tradition, which bodes well for a warm and happy Thanksgiving (more mashed potatoes and gravy, please).

Also on Thursday, Mercury in Sagittarius squares Jupiter in Pisces. All I can say about this one is avoid discussing politics and religion at the dinner table, unless you want to go home with a terrible case of indigestion.

The day after Thanksgiving is affectionately known in the United States as “Black Friday,” the biggest shopping day of the year. Susan Miller, one of my favorite Sun sign astrologers, has dire advice and is telling everyone to forget shopping on this day due to the close square from Mercury to Uranus. She thinks that you’ll be unhappy with what you buy, and whoever you’re buying the gift for will hate it. I’m not sure I agree with her on this one, but I thought it was worth mentioning. I think there’s a risk of buying impulsively and exercising poor judgment due to overwhelm.

Susie also points out that it would be a good idea to get your holiday shopping out of the way well before Mercury turns retrograde on December 10. If electronics are on your list, definitely get them now. “Cyber Monday” is coming up, with lots of deals on your favorite items. If you’re knitting, sewing, baking, or you have other homemade projects in the works, don’t wait until the last minute to get started.

Saturday is the big communications day. Despite the Mercury-Uranus square, which may make it hard to stay on point, the sextile from Mercury to Neptune and Chiron may be just what the astrologer ordered to heal tensions from earlier in the week.

Love, courage, and cranberries to all,
Aquarius, the sign of astrologyPat