The Uluru Statement - a reflection on time & planetary cycles

Astrology if full of cycles - let's face it the birth chart (in western astrology) is a circle - planets move around the chart in a circular motion.  The lunar cycle is probably the most well known - new moon, first quarter moon, full moon, last quarter moon and back to new moon. Some are familiar with the concept of "Saturn Return" which is one full Saturn cycle around the birth chart.  As with the lunar cycle we have two heavenly bodies in a cycle with each other - sun & moon.  With planets we have their own cycle around the chart - hence a solar return, a saturn return - but we also have planets in cycles with other planets.  One such cycle that I keep banging on about is the Pluto Uranus cycle.  This cycle started in the mid '60's with such things as teenage rebellion, a music revolution & large scale music festivals, mass protest marches, the concept of "flower children" and the now famous peace sign.  We are now at the equivalent of a first quarter moon in this Pluto Uranus cycle - what is referred to as a square.  I will come back to the now infamous Pluto square Uranus in a moment - but before I do I just want to add something more about cycles.

Astrology takes it's cycles from the movement of the planets around our sun.  Of course our sun - as centre of our solar system -  is also in a cyclic pattern within the our part of the universe - that's called the precession of the equinoxes.  Sun cycles - known as equinoxes and solistices - determine the natural yearly cycle.  Coming back to earth - lets look at the concept that clock faces are (mostly) circular - daily time is cyclic - dawn, noon, dusk, midnight.  BUT for some or other reason when we count years we are in a linear timeframe.  This is of course a man made system which sits outside all other natural timeframes.  

Back in 2012 we were all re-introduced to the Mayan calendar.   Plenty of doomsday sayers predicted the end of the world - WHY because in linear time it looked like we had hit the end of time - the end of the calendar.  What many failed to understand is that the Mayan calendar - like many of the calendars followed by our ancestors - were cyclic in nature.  The Mayan equivalent to our 2012 was simply the end of one cycle and the moving forward into a new cycle.  (Mind you that is an extremely simple statement in reference to another system of cycles within cycles).

Considering then that wAquamoon Astrologye are in a larger time cycle - lets consider that while we think that 2017 will be followed by 2018 and so on ad infinitum - we really are out of step with time which is cyclic.  The Mayan long count calendar, the Hindi system of the yugas, the western understanding of the ages of man ie the bronze age, the silver age, the golden age - reflect far more closely with cyclic time.  (If you want to know more about the great ages of time can I recommend the book "Lost Star of Myth and Time" by Walter Cruttenden).

So where is all this leading to?  Let's go back our now infamous Pluto Uranus square - which sits in cyclic time :)  
 
In many of my previous newsletters, I spoke of the concept that the square aspect between Pluto - who sits in the sign of Capricorn - a sign that rules such things as governments, ruling juntas, multinational corporations, mining to name a few manifestations - and Uranus - who sits in the sign of Aries - a sign that rules the general populace, us ordinary folk.  This square aspect would produce much stress and frustration between the two identities - and because Pluto is about death, transformation and rebirth - the Capricorn identities were about to undergo a massive change whilst Uranus was going to stir up the masses into demanding that their rights be heard.  All this is becoming more and more obvious as time goes on.

Last Friday - 26 May 2017 - the First Peoples of Australia released a statement from the heart. This profoundly magnificent statement didn't just happen on a random day in a random year when it seemed like a good idea to have a talkfest.  Yes there are man made reasons behind the coming together of the aboriginal nations but let's look at this momentous occasion through the eyes of astrology and time cycles.

We have already addressed the ongoing Pluto Uranus square above - the ordinary people needing to stand up for their rights which will in turn demand changes in the way we are governed.  That's one cycle.

Another cycle was the fact that this brilliant statement was released the day before the 50th anniversary of a referendum which recognised Aborigines in the Constitution.

Aquamoon AstrologyAstrologers will immediately recognise the importance of a 50 year cycle.  It corresponds directly to the cycle of the asteriod Chiron - known as the wounded healer from the myth.  That the Aboringal people have been a wounded nation since the time white man took over their lands is an understatement. They have lived with their woundedness for over 230 years which of course is another time cycle - the current Pluto in Capricorn cycle itself is around 250 years.  From the point in time when the First Peoples were first recognised consititutionally - the healing side of Chiron began.  This next cycle of Chiron will continue the healing work as our present government grapples with how to handle a nation of peoples coming into their power.

Within the wider and more far reaching time cycles (ages of man) - this statement reminds us that the First Peoples of Australia came to this land around 60,000 years ago.  The great ages time cycle is 24,000 years.  The First Peoples time in this land is roughly then two and half full ages cycle.  If we equate that to where we as a solar system are in the great ages cycle then the Uluru statement comes at a point where mankind is once again finding its way back into a state full understanding and knowledge.  And again, because our aboriginal people were unaffected by outside influences until the arrival of the white man - they have carried in their folklore, their dreamtime, their relationship to the land - the memories of all the ages of man - twice over.  Putting aside the hideous reprecussions of 230 years of disenfrancisement - but rather remembering who these peoples were before our invasion - then really we have much to learn from these peoples.

 

Venus Retrograde - 4 March 2017


Aquamoon AstrologyThe Planetary Postings train -which changed tracks around January 2016 - limped into the nearest station shortly after the track change - shut down its engines and has ever since been in the maintenance shed for a complete overhaul.
The mechanics are ready to start up her engines and see if "she" is ready to continue her journey on the zodiacal train tracks.  Let's see how she does.

Astrology can be seen as cycles within cycles - layers upon layers.  We can pull out a layer at any one time and work to understand that layer's meaning whilst all the time knowing there are a number of other layers also affecting the story. 

One such cycle has been the ongoing Uranus square Pluto.  This square which began its influence on planet earth's affairs in early 2012 - and which has come into direct contact with each other seven times since May 2012 - is still in communication with each other even now.  In April we still see the two planets within a four degree orb - certainly close enough to have a final opportunity to ensure that the planet and its inhabitants have worked with and understood the message this pairing was delivering.

The planet itself  reacted to this planetary square in the early days by toppling oppressive regimes - think the Arab spring when the ordinary wo/man in the street rebelled/defied/protested (Uranus) against the ruling (Capricorn) juntas.  A lot of water has gone under the bridge since then and with that water went most of our trust and belief in any form of political or government structure.  The Western world was not immune - think Brexit, think Trump, think the rise of right wing political parties.  People  are wanting change (Uranus) and their focus for change is aimed at governments, banks, large multinational conglomerates (Capricorn).  In the background we have seen Wikileaks, Julian Assange, Edward Snowden and others take on a human face of our internal anger towards those who have been hoodwinking us into believing they had our interests at heart.

Now as we come up the last days of the history making square - the universe is giving each one of us a grand opportunity to work on a more personal level with the affects of Uranus square Pluto.  Just recently (February 26 & 27) we had Mars - planet of action/initiation - riding the skies exactly alongside Uranus - which then in turn squared Pluto.  Whenever Mars comes into contact with current key planetary players - those key player's messages are highlighted and bought into our consciousness/awareness. As we saw in the outer world the Uranus square Pluto has shown itself as mass rebellion by the people against established and entrenched dictatorships.  As we say in astrology:  as above so below:  as without so within.  Now is the time to go within.

Really, the outer world is merely a reflection of what is happening in the inner world.  Within each of us there is a ongoing rebellion against oppressive and outdated beliefs we hold about ourselves.  Each one of us - to some extent - is wanting to take back ownership of our "world".  How that looks for you will depend on the houses in your natal chart that are highlighted by the transiting Uranus and Pluto. 

Further to the firing up of the Uranus Pluto story by Mars just last week - we have what I believe to be the most important transit for 2017 - Venus in Aries retrograde - 4 MAquamoon Astrologyarch until 15 April 2017.  Just an astronomy word on Venus retrograde first.  A Venus retrograde is unique in that the planet only goes backward around every eighteen months - as opposed to her nearest planet - Mercury - who goes retrograde around three times a year.  Needless to say therefore - the Venus retrograde holds a bit more punch than a Mercury retrograde only because it as a rarer occurrence.  Another reason this particular Venus retrograde is so important is that it covers the Uranus/Mars/ Pluto areas of the skies.  All the of the above will be bought into focus under the influence of self love - Venus (love) in Aries (the self).

Whenever a planet goes retrograde - we have a time of inward reflection.  When Venus goes retrograde the inner reflection focuses on our sense of values and our understanding of love.  We can ask ourselves:

  • what do I value  
  • how much do I value myself  
  • how do I show  - or what do I do for - myself that indicates a true sense of self love
  • who do I love - or what do I love
  • are my love relationships working for me
  • how open is my heart to love

 If we can do the homework - while Venus is retrograde - then we can come away with a much stronger sense of self - a clearer understanding of what's important to me and best of all we can pitch those self discoveries against the diatribe of outer world and make decisions that will help empower the self.

This is ultimately what the Uranus Pluto square is all about - in the outer world we are replacing oppressive and out of touch governments with authority figures that listen and act BUT ultimately I am my own authority and when I believe that and act accordingly then I will see the change I want to happen.

(If you want to know more about what the Venus retrograde could mean for you personally - find the house(s) in your birth chart that contain 26 degrees Pisces to 13 degrees of Aries.  That house(s) will give you the best clue as to which area of life you needs reviewing with regards to your sense of values and love.  If you don't have a birth chart - then go to http://www.astro.com/ and follow the prompts.  Otherwise do yourself a favour and seek out a qualified astrologer !!!)

 

 
Planetary Postings - a track change
 
For the past few months I have struggled to write the usual new and full moon newsletters.  The struggle has been on a number of levels:
1. A knowing deep within that planetary postings had reached the end of its life cycle.  Every time I sat down to write another newsletter there was this feeling like I was pushing shit uphill.   
2. I have been under the influence of a Neptune transit for some time now and while the immediate impact has moved on – the energies remain strongly placed in my chart.  When Neptune takes over it is like you live in a thick pea soup fog.  Nothing feels or looks real.  You could wander around for hours or days in some sort of aimless, directionless circle and find that you haven't made any headway in any direction - let alone the direction you need to be heading.  This energy doesn't augur well for discipline of working with regular newsletters.
3.    The fear around losing contact with the followers of Aquamoon Astrology.  Every time I made the decision to stop writing planetary postings my readership numbers would increase dramatically – well dramatically for me – I would have four or five new readers in one week.
 Regardless of the struggle and the fears I know planetary postings in its current format has moved on past its used by date – change has been on the cards for a while – it was just a matter of me coming to accept that understanding and work out where to from here.
 
Just back in late November – the planet was introduced to a planetary aspect that will affect us all throughout most of 2016 – Neptune square Saturn.  Neptune as I mentioned above – the dreamer, the intuitive, the imaginative mind, s/he who sees the unseen, the creator of fantasies and highly innovative and ingenious films, paintings, photography etc.  Saturn on the other hand has two feet firmly on the ground, is highly disciplined, structured, no nonsense, sends out reality checks on a regular basis, poo poos the fantasy and imaginative worlds.  These two are meeting up in a square aspect which means they will stress each other out no end all year.  They will stress us out too!!!
 
What it will mean for me and you is an opportunity to make real your dreams, to work through those dreams you have had for a number of years and to ascertain whether they are worth hanging onto or whether it is time to throw them out or rework them.  On the other hand there will be structures and routines and traditions that have built up over the last few years in your life – which have mostly supported you in keeping your life running like clockwork that might now need to get the flick and be replaced with something that works better for you.
 
This is what is happening for me and planetary postings.  Another astrologer, Emily Trinkaus, who wrote the regular Virgo Pages newsletter, came out on the day of the first contact between Neptune and Saturn and did just what I had been thinking for a while – cancelled her newsletter. Life was taking her in a new direction and the newsletters were not part of that new life.  I attribute her bravery to the push I needed to work out what I wanted to do with planetary postings.
 
Just as an aside - this filtering through our life for outgrown habits sits perfectly with the numerology of 2016 which is a number 9 year.  These years are noted as opportunities to let go of worn out habits, lack lustre dreams, friends who no longer talk your language – same old same old is just not going to cut the mustard in a number of areas this year.
  
OK so where to from here.  Planetary postings will go on but not in the regular format of new and full moon newsletters.  I will be moving into a more “blog” style newsletter for now.  Taking my cue from the current planetary energies – I will share with you how those energies are working with me (or not).  One thing I have recognised over time is that what I am experiencing at any one time is not so unique that it might not resonant with others.  I trust this will be the case as I venture into a new form of communicating with you.
 
 
Cancer Full Moon – 25 December – 10:12pm (AEDT) – Sun at 03° Capricorn 20' - Moon at 03° Cancer 20'
 
At the risk of being labelled a “bah humbug Scrooge” when really this is supposed to be the “most wonderful time of the year” – let me put it to you that I have been writing astrology newsletters for around ten years or more and for the majority of those ten years the planetary energies around this day have been anything but love, joy, happiness and peace.  Really if those who morphed the ancient celebration of Saturnalia into Christmas had any sense at all they would have looked to compromising pagan festivals around the time Libra ruled the charts and if that was not possible then the Sagittarius ruled time of late November and early December would have suited the festivities far more than late December.  Whilst Saturnalia gave some reprieve to the slaves of the wealthy Roman elite – it was for one day only AND it is only a suggestion that those same slaves got the day off.

Christmas comes straight after the three days of the summer solstice (southern hemisphere).  (If you would like to read more on the three days of the solstice – please click on this link and read Gary Caton’s wonderful explanation).  The skies are currently ruled by Saturn – an energy far more aligned with Scrooge than Father Christmas (who by the way belongs to Jupiter who rules Sagittarius).  Saturn himself is squaring Neptune – here’s an example of what that might look like -  two young people who are about to be betrothed are going shopping – they have enough money for an engagement ring or a fridge and washing machine – Neptune chooses the ring – Saturn chooses the fridge and washing machine.  Buying Christmas presents is usually a Neptune experience - Saturn comes into the picture when the credit card bill arrives next month. 

Aquamoon AstrologyHere’s another slant on the Cancer full moon right on Christmas Day.  If we take ourselves back two weeks we had the Sagittarius new moon (Friday 11 December).  This full moon is being played out under the rulership of a sign that sees the entire planet as its family or tribe.  There can be no exclusivity with Sagittarius – this sign sees each person on this planet as part of the earth family – every individual is entitled to share in the wealth that Mother Nature (a Cancer image) brings to the table.  

One last “bah humbug” proposition.  Cancer is also well known for hosting the very best emotional roller coaster rides.  This sign holds reign over every feeling state known to wo/man.  We all know how full moons like to bring out the werewolves among us.  Let’s not forget that the full moon comes in at 10:12pm – that’s at the end of a day of feasting and merrymaking.  Under the influence of one too many drinks – a number of family gatherings tend to get rather rowdy and personal at this time.  It’s around now you will see the real influence of the Cancer full moon!!!

There are two more planetary influences you might like to be aware of this Christmas period.  One is Uranus – planet of upheaval, disruption & social awkwardness – who comes out of retro-gradation two days after Christmas day.  On the day itself it is stationary (standing still) – meaning its energies are magnified.  Two is Mercury who is coming up to its first retrograde for the 2016 year.  That will happen on 6 January.  In the meantime Mercury is traveling through the shadow of the retrograde period.  Without getting hung up about the astrology terminology – the shadow period (which began on 20 December) is fast becoming as troublesome as the retrograde period itself.  For those who are not familiar with a Mercury retrograde event – this is a time when all forms of communication can go haywire – emails, texts, FB posts (any social media really) – computers and any piece of technology tends to come under Mercury’s trickster antics.  So do car accidents, so do travel arrangements, so do contracts of any type, so do any new projects or adventures.  The Mercury retrograde phase is a time when we are exhorted to slow down and review life – not continue at the fast pace most of us are currently sustaining.

Of course astrology is never all just one way as far as the energies are concerned.  There is always a counter balance and that comes in the form of Mars in this full moon chart.  The God of War – who could really have had a field day with all the family in the one place – is currently restricted to the energies of Libra whose energies we really want to be unleashed upon the earth – love peace and joy.  No war for this warrior this year – his sword has been turned into a magical wand.

I truly wish you and yours a wonderful festive season.  May the love peace and joy which we all look for at this time - fill your hearts from within.
 
 
Gemini Full Moon – 26 November – 9:43am (AEDT)  Sun at 3° Sagittarius 20'  Moon at  3° Gemini 20'  
 
 
In many ways I love that the Gemini full moon has fallen in a Scorpio lunar cycle – let me tell you why:  the polarity between the sun in Sagittarius and the moon in Gemini is one that talks to one idea, one inspiration, one belief (Sagittarius) over the concept that really there are many ideas, many inspirations, many beliefs (Gemini).  We see this being played in the current ISIS crisis.  Regardless of the background and hidden agendas behind this conflict (that’s Scorpio’s realm) – what we are witnessing is the playing out of a Sagittarian theme of one religion for all.  Those who follow a more tolerant and open minded view of life (Gemini) recognise the narrow mindedness (Sagittarius) of this idea.  Herein lies the message of this full moon – the need for each one of us to stay receptive to life and the people, situations and events it presents us.
 
Keeping that concept (staying open) in mind - let’s consider that just twelve hours after the full moon we have the first exact hit of one of the major transits for 2016 – Neptune square Saturn.  But before we explore this game changer let’s look back for a moment.
 
Over the last three years we experienced the transformational transit of Pluto square Uranus.  This exchange of energies was in an exact 90° square orb from June 2012 until May 2015.  This square was central to every astrology event and the basis of every astrology newsletter throughout that three year period.  Whilst the exactness of the square has moved on the effects of the Pluto Uranus square are absolutely still with us.  Sitting a little apart from the full impact of that transit I can see that Ghandi’s quote “be the change you want to see in the world” could really be the theme of that transit.  The Pluto Uranus square threw many of us back onto ourselves.  The realisation that the

 government, world leaders, the boss, parents, inspirational people (anyone outside of ourselves) were not going to change my world – that only I could do that – that only I can “be the change” forced us to consider alternatives (Uranus) to old structural patterns (Pluto in Capricorn).
 
Now we come to the next part of this ongoing evolutionary story – Neptune square Saturn.  Over the last three years many of us have been re-visioning life – our personal life and the outer geo political world.  On the whole we are disillusioned (Neptune) with governments and ruling bodies (Saturn).  The concept that we need to take responsibility for our life (Saturn) is a fairly new one in light of the past where we were led to believe that the government would take care of us, where the boss would provide us with a job to pay our way through life and where Churches were safe havens of worship.  Those concepts for the most part have be debunked.  So where to from here?  
 
When Neptune first moved into his home territory of Pisces (also back in 2012) Steven Forrest commented that this home coming Neptune signalled the rise of new religions or at least new belief systems.  He suggested this transit seemed to come on the tail of a breakdown of old beliefs, old constructs and worn out excuses for the way we live life.  It is as if we, the people, are ready for change.  The old is no longer working, it has lost its appeal and so we look to some new guru, (spiritual) leader or messiah to get us out of the mess we find ourselves in.  As we are moving into what is popularly termed “the Age of Aquarius” any new “God” would have to be inclusive of all humanity.  The “rights of the ordinary people” is becoming more and more of a global catchcry.  In fact if you want a genuine current example of Neptune square Saturn consider the (mostly) Syrian refugees (Neptune) pouring across the many European country borders (Saturn).  By and large the majority of folk just want to live their lives in peace and harmony with their nearest and dearest close by and with the right to express and create themselves according to their reality.  When 99% of the world’s population is denied this right – we usually end up with a revolution of sorts.
 
The recognition that came with the Pluto square Uranus: only I can bring about change is now turning into a need to bring that change into reality.  What was started with the Arab Spring and the Occupy movement while Pluto and Uranus danced around each other will now take the next step into fuller consciousness as Neptune takes up the dance with Saturn.  The image of the refugees “smashing” through country borders to get to their dream is one we might hold before us as we negotiate our way through this revolutionary exchange of Neptune and Saturn.  
 
Image by Carl Sanburg
 
Scorpio New Moon – 12 November – 4:47am (AEDT) – Sun & Moon at 19° Scorpio 01'
 
The best way to engage with the Scorpio new moon energies is to think of the many ceremonies and rituals that occur around the world at this time.
On 31 October every year we – in the west- celebrate Halloween.  The term “Halloween” actually comes from the Catholic tradition of celebrating the feast of All Saints on 1 November – that feast day was also called All Hallows – Halloween being the eve of All Hallows.  Many countries around the world celebrate “The Day of Dead” around this time.  Whole families gather at the cemetery and sit around the graves of their ancestors and tell family stories.
 
Whichever way we celebrate (or are aware of the celebrations) - this time of the year is believed to be one where the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest.  In ghoulish terms it is the time when the dead were believed to have actually risen from their graves and haunted the lives of their mortal enemies.  In more spiritual terms it is the time when we can be infused with deep insightful truth about ourselves and our soul’s journey.  (It could be that our ancestors are the ones offering us the courage to face some hidden truth).
 
The ghouls of Halloween are of course a metaphor for all that we have buried deep in the graveyard of our psyche.  We don’t go there unless we have to (or a Pluto transit lifts the lid off the psyche’s coffin).  It is then we are faced with the ghosts of the past – ghosts we believed were long dead and buried but instead were alive and well and just waiting for an opportune time to remind us we have unfinished business to attend to.  Some of you may be fans of the novelist:  Thomas Hardy who wrote such novels as Tess of the D’Ubervilles and Mayor of Casterbridge to name only two.  A theme Thomas ran through his books was a fated choice or a meeting through which the main character was stamped for life.  Invariably the character met this fate later in the book, mostly with dire consequences.  With Scorpio there is a similar theme – we all know deep down inside something that we may have said or done or not done that has altered the course of our lives.  There may have been (severe) consequences of those decisions or actions on others.  We have also learned (or still need to learn) that the consequences will eventually catch up with us too and our day of reckoning always comes.  It’s the old saying:  “you can run but you can’t hide”.
 
Speaking of fate – the nodes of the moon which belong to our past and future stories – move signs today.  For the past nineteen months or so the south node of the moon (indicator of how we physically lived our past lives) has been in the sign of Aries (indicating past lives in which we were soldiers, warriors, pioneers, persons of great courage and passion for example).  Whilst the south node of the moon has been in Aries, many of us heeded an inner call or soul memory around the idea of fighting for what we believed in, what we were passionate about.  Negotiation and peace talks were dismissed as time wasters and yet for those of us who took up the fight the prospect of seeking peace was never far from our minds.   Now the south node moves into Pisces (indicating past lives of having lived in institutions, lived in a drug induced haze or a bohemian lifestyle whilst on the flip side we may well have been fully into the mystical or creative realms).
 
Placing this in context with today’s new moon – what needs to “die” within us is the desire to go for the jugular of our “enemy” and instead consider what Jesus taught “turn the other cheek”.  If you think that is complete bollocks then know you have a bit to learn before the nodes move onto the next lesson in May 2017.  Furthermore the ruler of Aries, Mars, is about to learn the same lesson.  Tomorrow morning (13 November) the war god goes into Libra – a sign of debilitation for the red planet.  Libra wants negotiation, mediation, equality, balance – all these concepts are foreign to Mars.  Mars will be faced with lessons around peace and harmony until 4 January 2016 - we will be learning the lesson for another year and half.  
 
So hand in hand with the new moon energy where the veils between the worlds become very thin indeed and the change of karmic lessons – it could be said that some of us are facing some home truths from times past that will require us to practice restraint and learn humility.
 
Lastly, long term readers of planetary postings will know of my respect for the sabian symbols.  There are times when these symbols speak deeply to the message of the new or full moon and this is one of those times.  The symbol for this new moon (Scorpio 20) is:  “a woman drawing aside two dark curtains that closed the entrance to a sacred pathway”.  Those who meditate around the time of the new moon may like to take that image into their meditation.
 
Art by Nene Thomas.
 
Taurus Full Moon – 27 October – 11:05pm (AEDT) – Sun 03° Scorpio 45'   Moon 03° Taurus 45'
 
Just over twelve months ago, I attended the inaugural meeting of the SpringDale Community Garden.  To begin with there was much planning, compiling legal type documents and applying for numerous grants.  Then in August this year we hired a skidsteer and cleared our 1.2 hectare block of carpet weed.  From there on in we – the gardeners – have spent most weekends mapping out the garden and just last week finally planting out our first vegetable beds.
 
Why am I telling you this – because Taurus belongs to the earth – to Mother Earth – to the soil and all that takes life from her.  Taurus also belongs to the time in our human evolution where we moved away from being the hunter/gatherer to becoming the farmer and learning how to grow our food.  It was around the same time as humankind left behind the nomadic lifestyle and learned how to build shelters so they could remain in one place longer than one season that we also started to take notice of the movement of the stars and moon and the sun.  History tells us that it was shepherds working the night shift who first noticed the brighter stars (planets) and tracked their movement through the dark skies.  These first agricultural tribes also mapped the relationship between the sun and moon (lunar cycles).  They went on to realise that the lunar cycles had a bearing on fertility – human fertility, animal fertility and crop fertility.  All this eventually came down through the ages into what we now know as the moon gardening calendar.
 
Taurus is about staying put long enough to understand and work with seasons and cycles.  Taurus doesn’t rush to conclusions, nor is it interested (necessarily) in scientific data to support or refute information that has taken thousands of years to gather.  As an example many of us will tune into long range weather forecasts to get an understanding of whether we might be in for a long hot dry summer whereas those in tune with Mother Nature will check the amount of bark which has fallen from the trees.
Let’s take this one step further.  We as humans are made of the same minerals and elements as are found on planet Earth.  So we are as one with the earth.  As we have learned over the centuries how to grow food to nourish our bodies – so too we have learned what constitutes good healthy food that will nourish and sustain our bodies.  Looking after our body is another Taurus agenda item.  Not only what we eat and drink, but adequate sleep and rest and going on from that how we dress our body, how we adorn our body and all the things that help us feel good about our bodies -  full body massages, luxuriating in a hot spa or bath, facials and so forth.
 
Venus rules Taurus – Venus in her Greek guise as Aphrodite is a great example of the body beautiful – the sensual body – the allure of the body – the desire to have the body pampered.  Venus is currently sitting in the sign of Virgo.  And indeed we are in a Virgo lunar cycle.  So in comes the overruling factor in this Taurus full moon story.  Take all of the above and now overlay it with an anxiousness to know we are eating a proper diet, we are engaging in an acceptable level of exercise, and we are getting at least eight hours sleep a night.  Whilst Taurus is happy to take a few centuries or more to learn and understand the rhythms of life and nature – Virgo will study the same, take notes, memorise those notes, test out any theories that come from those notes and add to or modify those notes where necessary.  Needless to say Venus is not happy in Virgo.  Imagine Aphrodite in all her glory being informed she do with a few less pounds around the middle.
 
With full moons there is always a need to balance something.  This comes from the polarity of the sun and moon.  One is one part of the sky and the other in the opposite part – yet the two are still in communion.  What we need to balance is idea that Taurus – who over centuries has learnt what is good for our bodies – has now convinced itself that if it is good for us than surely we can indulge in that goodness.  Whereas Virgo will say “everything in moderation followed by a decent session on the treadmill”.  Before this lunar cycle comes to a close (12 November) Venus will move into Libra (9 November) meaning we will get a three day break from that quiet inner voice which wants to fill us with guilt everything we reach for a second helping or bite into a chocolate bar.  In meantime maybe indulge in something other than food.
 
Libra New Moon – 13 October 2015 – 11:05am (AEDT)  Sun & Moon at 19° Libra 20'
 
The well known image of Themis – a Greek titan goddess – presides over the sign of Libra.  Themis is the goddess of divine justice.  She sits on one side of Zeus (Jupiter) whilst Dike – goddess of human justice - sits on the other side.  Statues of Themis show her (mostly) blindfolded, holding the scales of justice in one hand and a sword in the other.  Her likeness is often seen in and around courthouses.
 
Libra takes the scales of justice from Themis as its symbol.  This is what Libra strives for: balance – along with harmony, peace and beauty in heart and mind.  It desires, above all else, to be in a love relationship, to give and receive love.  Libra deplores conflict, argument, discord, antagonism – it seeks ways in to appease warring parties and as such then becomes a keen mediator, therapist or even judge.  
 
What we have then at the start of this new lunar cycle is an energy that looks for balance and harmony within and without – an energy that celebrates the concept of love relationships in which that sense of balance and harmony can best be played out.  But if we are truly honest then we know that relationships are not just a bed of roses – for with roses comes thorns.  Balanced and harmonious relationships have placed on one of the scales their conflicts, arguments and differences and on the other scale their love for each other.  It is a matter of continuous striving to balance those scales so that each may be free to express themselves as an individual and yet still be loved and accepted by the other. 
 
It is that continuous striving to remain an individual within the confines of a relationship that is highlighted this new moon cycle.  Sitting exactly opposite the union of the sun and moon is Uranus – god of individualism.  Uranus demands freedom, cannot be tied down, seeks to express himself in whichever way he desires, is oblivious to social niceties and has no regard for conformity.  Hence the push pull in relationships will be highlighted more than usual this lunar period.  It could be that relationships are feeling more strained over the next moonth – that one or the other wants more freedom, more recognition of their needs, wants the right to be heard, wants to express an opposing opinion.  It could very well be that one half of the relationship is acting up – as it were – behaving out of character.  (And just a note here that relationships are not confined to two adults who are living together but rather any form of relationship in which one person shares intimately on any level with another.  This idea can then include the relationship between dear friends, between therapist and client, between business partners, between members of a family, between housemates and so on).
 
Causing even more disharmony is the ruler of this lunar orbit – Venus.  The goddess of love and beauty has just recently moved into the sign of Virgo (9 October).  This is definitely not one of her favourite zodiac positions.  Virgo’s idea of love and harmony is centred on perfection and precision.  When Virgo falls in love it tends to become OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder).  There can be no spontaneity with a Virgo – everything must be planned and ordered and executed along a set course.  Should something or someone not be able to follow this set course of action, a mental or emotional breakdown ensues.  In a lunar cycle that is looking for balance and harmony we have a real issue here.
 
Coming back to the idea of wanting harmony and balance in our lives is the return of Mercury to a forward motion (11 Ocotber).  Many of us have lived through all sorts of disruptions for the last three weeks (or even more if we count the shadow period of Mercury) and are now most desirous of something more akin to peace and tranquility.
 
So the challenge or the focus of the moonth ahead is one of remaining an individual within the close confines of true intimacy.  If you have a moment or two today or tomorrow, you might want to spend some time in meditation over the need to balance those two (opposing) desires.
 
Image:  Josephine Wall
 
Aries Full Moon –Total Lunar eclipse - 28 September – 12:50pm (AEST)

Let’s play catch up!!  At the time of the Virgo new moon my laptop was in IT hospital.  It was a forerunner of what is proving to be one of the most trying Mercury retrograde phases I have ever lived through.  More on that further into the newsletter – but firstly let’s start with that Virgo new moon.
This present lunar cycle started on 13 September at 4:40pm when the sun and moon met at 20° Virgo 10'.  This was also a partial solar eclipse.  Eclipses are always difficult to predict on a personal scale.  The best advice astrologers can give is:  if you have planets, chart points or angles in line with the eclipse – so if you have anything in the chart around 20° of Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius or Pisces – then you are more likely to feel the effect of this eclipse.  Astrologer Ed Tamplin wrote a great piece on the affect of the solar eclipse on our now ex Prime Minister.  You can read about here.
 
As with any sign there are a number of ways we can look at this new moon energy but the one I like best when looking at Virgo in relation to lunar cycles is the idea of service.  The new moon asks us to check in with ourselves and take stock of who or what do we serve?  Do we serve ourselves – so are we the first priority – or do we look to helping others – do we make others needs our own needs?  If we read and work with the spiritual masters then we could be forgiven for being confused over this issue.  Some will tell you the best thing you can do is give to others – make others your focus – whilst others will tell you that loving yourself is the highest priority as all else will fall into place when we have achieved that goal.  The other thing about Virgo is it belongs to the stage of life when we are learning – so us in a student mode – us as an apprentice – us taking orders from those in the know.  How do we deal with that idea of being humble enough to understand that all of life is a classroom of sorts.  We can never be so arrogant as to think we might know it all but on the flip side – how open are we to learning new things – how open are we to taking advice and instruction? Coming directly on the toes of the new moon and that idea of service and humility and learning is the third Mercury retrograde phase this year.

This Mercury retrograde period began four days after the new moon on 17 September when Mercury was at 15° Libra 55'.  Mercury will now (seemingly) travel backwards to the zodiac point of 00° Libra 56'.  Now here is the thing (oops that’s the opening line of astro pal Jo Tracey newsletters) – we can see from that piece of information that the Mercury retrograde period - as far as zodiacal degrees is concerned – covers the space between 00° Libra and almost 16° Libra.  Mercury actually did cover this space (moving in its usual forward motion) from 28 August until 17 September when it stopped still and began to move in reverse.  This timeframe from 28 August until 17 September is what astrologers call the Mercury shadow period.  There are two shadow periods actually.  The second one happens at the end of the Mercury retrograde phase when the planet retraces his steps through the zodiac moving off from the final retrograde point of 00° Libra and catching up to where he left off at 16° Libra.  These two shadow periods are becoming more and more potent in their influence and many astrologers are now noting that the effects of a mercury retrograde are no longer confined to just the exact retrograde dates.  If we take the shadow periods into account we actually have all the usual retrograde mishaps (possibly) occurring from 28 August until 25 October!!!!  And what’s more the usual Mercury retrograde mishaps are happening to more people and are happening with greater regularity.  My little theory – for what’s it worth – is that we living under such pressure (think “instant” everything) that Mercury is having a harder time trying to get us to slow down to reflect and review where we are at in our lives – this being the true purpose of the Mercury retrograde time.

This Mercury retrograde falling in the Virgo lunar cycle ties in with the idea of being open to learn, being humble enough to accept that there will be times when even the universe (or unforeseen circumstances) take over our best laid plans.  One of Mercury’s favourite ploys is playing with travel plans – planes are delayed or flights are cancelled, traffic jams are longer in car length and time.  It takes an openness of mind and attitude to accept we are not always in control when Mercury is retrograde.

The next planetary event in this catch up is Saturn moving out of Scorpio and into Sagittarius.  This happened on 18 September.  One astrologer quiet rightly noted that Saturn (the head master, the teacher, the hard task master, the no nonsense “get on with it” type of guy) moving out of Scorpio (the previous sign to Sagittarius) will leave a trail of emotional battered souls.  The last two and half years have been a time when Saturn has dug up out of our psyche all those supposedly hidden memories of times/incidents/events/conversations etc we would prefer never happened.  He has ensured that we confront a number of our hidden demons and the cost for some has been quite high.  Now that Saturn has moved into Sagittarius the head master is taking us to task over our beliefs.  What will come up for us over the next two and half years is times when we will be forced to make choices which will clarify for us where we stand on important life issues.  Saturn will help us better understand what is our truth and what holds true for us.  On a grander scale we might consider our stance on the refugee crisis, where we stand in relation to same sex marriage, where our sympathies lie considering the domestic violence issue.  Likewise we will be confronted with situations closer to home – more on a personal level – but on a similar scale in regards to outcomes.

Again in the framework of the Virgo lunar cycle we can see once again the need for humility – the need to put ourselves in a mindset whereby we are open to learning – to having truths, issues, stances placed before us whereby we can learn and seek advice in a process of making choices that will colour who we are.
On September 23 at 6:21pm the sun moved into the zodiac sign of Libra.  Another name for this movement is the spring equinox (well it is for us here in the southern hemisphere).  The light is now equally divided between day and night.  The sun moving over any of the cardinal points (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) denotes a new season in nature.  It is also seen as a new beginning or a new start and a chance to reflect on the gifts that Mother Nature presents us in the upcoming months.  Many take the time to honour the Mother with ritual and ceremony at this special time.

And lastly before this upcoming new moon we have Pluto standing still in the heavens in preparation for a return to a forward movement – this happening on 26 September.  The lord of the underworld (in other words the one in charge of our inner depths) has also been rummaging around deep below within our being (along with Saturn while he was in Scorpio).  Much has been presented to us – many of us had some real wake up calls – some of us have had to face real fears – some of us have been pushed beyond all boundaries.  But all this has been happening behind closed doors as it were.  Fears may have been raised through dreams – through an off handed comment – via a news item on tv.  Our inner selves have been stirred.  And mind you these stirrings are not all bad.  The common dominator in all that Pluto brings to our attention is that it will have a large “out of my comfort zone” element about it.  Now that Pluto is stationary within the heavens – he holds us in his sights – for when he begins his forward journey those suggestions he has made, those fears he has raised, those issues that have left us feeling uncomfortable (all behind closed doors) will come out into the daylight and we will feel exposed and will need to act upon that which we thought was just an intimate idea.

Finally we come to this Monday’s new moon in Aries.  This new moon is also a supermoon – meaning the moon is at its closest approach to the earth on its elliptic path.  It is also the harvest moon.  It is also a total lunar eclipse – unfortunately we here in Australia will not be able to witness this phenomena.  One astrologer has called this new moon a supermoon on steroids.  And it is not hard to see why.  Most of you are aware of the saying “as above so below” - as above will be this magnificent blood red supermoon undergoing an eclipse - so below means: all that we can see happening in heavens is actually happening within as well.  Lunar eclipses are known as times of emotional upheaval.  It is like a rebooting of the emotional inner world.  Those emotions that have not been processed, have bugs in them, have not been updated to the latest version will be thrown out of the system.  Unfortunately though, whereas in a computer reboot, a system clean up is painless – an emotional reboot usually comes with some amount of turmoil and this is only for those who have been denying any pokes and prods from Pluto while he was retrograde.  Others who will undergo a major reboot will those with planets or charts point and/or angles around three, four or five degrees of the mutual signs – that being Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces.  If you are one of these folk then it might be worth your while marking the calendar until we hit the next lunar eclipse – 9 March 2016 – for anytime between now and then there could well be an out of the blue – major impacting incident  - that could set your life into a tail spin.
Full moons are times of balance – moon on one side of the heavens/chart and sun on the other.  We are now being asked to balance the message of the new moon with reality.  Remembering this new moon was around the idea of placing ourselves in a state where we acknowledge we don’t know everything, where we need to look for outside advice on some matters pertaining to life’s journey and where we need to be in a suitable (humble) frame of mind to accept this advice and learning – then this full moon is the point where we can understand how that is working for us.  With the full moon across the Aries Libra axis the challenge will be how much do I think I know as opposed to how much to others know and how much more can I learn from others or learn it for myself.  I will leave you with that question.
 
Pisces Full Moon – 30 August 2015 – 4:36am (AEST) Sun 06° Virgo 07'  Moon 06° Pisces 07'  

This full moon sure has a strong message.  The ruler of the full moon – Neptune – is sitting right beside the moon.  The traditional ruler of the full moon – Jupiter - is sitting right beside the sun.  In other words the heavens could be saying:  “I’m giving you a single focussed message”.  This zodiac opposition highlights Virgo which is an energy best described as meticulous, seeking perfection, fussy, the sort of energy that wants to ensure the t’s are crossed and the i’s are dotted, whereas the Pisces energy - being the opposite - is more about the imagination, hanging loose, going with the flow, daydreaming and creativity.  This then is the push pull effect of this full moon – how much energy do I give to getting it right and how much do I give over?

As always the full moon comes at the half way mark in the lunar cycle.  This cycle began in Leo.  One of the themes of the new moon was around inner reflection.  You may recall at the time of the new moon we had Venus at the half way mark of her retrograde phase.  Venus holds the distinction of being the planet that goes retrograde the least often – so when she does it is quite powerful.  Like any planet Venus holds sway over a number of energies –but when she goes retrograde the energy most likely to manifest is the one in which we examine our levels of self esteem, self confidence, self love – how well do we fare when others question our opinions, beliefs, personality.  Criticism can be biting at times and if it comes your way at the time of a Venus retrograde it is most likely to set you into a tail spin.  You begin to question yourself – one minute you are cruising through life being part of the scene and the next minute you are pulled up short and drawn inwards to reflect on how you fit within your immediate relationships.  

Can you see how this might also be reflective of our full moon message?  Virgo is all those things we mentioned above but when Virgo is acting up it becomes a nitpicker, it can be rude, critical in the extreme – not only of others but of itself as well.  Pisces, on the other hand, falls into a victim martyr mentality or looks for escape routes when it feels threatened, when it criticised or even simply questioned – for Pisces is extremely sensitive and feels criticism deeply.

It would be most surprising if looking back over the last two weeks you don’t find an incident in which you found yourself thrown back in on yourself.  As mentioned the Venus retrograde period is quite powerful and even the strongest of souls will find themselves confronted with people, situations or events that have them, even fleetingly, questioning their themselves and/or their personal traits or attributes.  If you can’t think of anything then maybe Venus is manifesting in one of her other domains and you have been pulled up short in your relationships or in your finances.

So where we do go with this understanding at this full moon phase?  The best thing to do is to take the best of both energies at play.  Let the Jupiter Sun allow you to see the good that comes from criticism and work on perfecting your sense of self (Virgo).  Let your understanding of your own magnificent self, a self that is intimately tied to a source of love that is beyond our imagination overtake you and remind you that above all else this life is but a dream and you are its author (Pisces).  

On her retrograde path, Venus will meet up with Mars on Tuesday 1 September.  Now there is the possibility that you will confronted with anger or bullish behaviour.  This could be your day of reckoning if you have not yet encountered that person, situation or event that throws your ideas of self into ones of self examination.  On the other hand it could be a day when you start seeing results of all the hard work you have done on yourself over the last few weeks while Venus has been retrograde.  The Venus retrograde period finishes just after this meeting – Sunday 6 September – so we are almost at there.  Mars could be that last push to bring you to the next level of understanding your inner beauty.  He could also give your that push to bring it out into the open – let your light shine.
 
Leo New Moon – 15 August – 00:53am (AEST) - Sun & Moon at 21° Leo 30'

Normally at the Leo new moon we begin a lunar phase that is imbued with energies of love, fun, generosity and childlike playfulness.  We also realise a growing need within to feel special, noticed and appreciated.  Like I said – that is the normal way we would start a Leo moonth.  But the planets are not supporting an outward show of affection, joy or even clowning about.  The energetic vibration currently bouncing off planet earth’s atmosphere is more about inner reflection – it’s more onerous and heavy – it is exacting – it is setting high standards (mostly too high) – the energies are leaving us confused and unable to express ourselves in the usual free spirited manner that mostly accompanies a Leo new moon phase.

So what is happening to make this time so burdensome?  The inner reflection has much to do with the current retrograde cycle of Venus.  At this new moon time, Venus is sitting only two degrees away from the sun moon combination.  Venus will meet the sun just hours after the new moon for what astrologers call an inferior conjunction.  From an astronomical point of view – Venus will move behind the sun and go on in the next few weeks to become the morning star.  In moving behind the sun astrologers suggest that she, Venus, allows the sun to be the more powerful light in the morning sky.  Taking this into a personal perspective it means that male energy, the ego, the life force dominates rather than the softer feminine energy which is indicated by Venus.  Intuition, imagination, beauty, appreciation, compassion are attributes which might not necessarily come to the immediate forefront in any given situation – well at least not until Venus returns to the forward movement which is not until 6 September.
 
The onerous and heavy energies are coming from Saturn.  He is currently squaring off against the new moon conjunction and also to Venus.  There is a sense of duty and responsibility around Saturn.  There is certainly no sense of fun or frivolity which we expect with a Leo new moon.  It’s like you might want to go out and make merry one night – you ring around to see who wants to join you only to hear one excuse after the other.  Excuses like “I’ve got to finish this assignment”  “I need a good night’s sleep for tomorrow’s presentation at work”  “I need to look my best for this job interview”.  People will appear to be more concerned with putting an effort into life at the moment, rather than having fun and enjoying themselves.

The (the way too) high standards come from Virgo – where Jupiter and Mercury are currently residing.  Jupiter has only just moved into the sign of the virgin –meaning this is a fresh energy and so still new and vital.  Plus wherever Jupiter goes he expands the energy base.  So it could be said that Virgo is newly aroused.  Virgo demands we are precise, perfect and exact in everything we do and say.  And even though Jupiter has come with his benevolent and forgiving nature – hoping to give that critical Virgo a break from the demands he places on his own – unfortunately it will take more than the promise of a few nights of peaceful sleep for Virgo to give up the exacting regime.  The other planet trying to get Virgo to let up a bit is Neptune - who is currently opposite Mercury – which makes it feel a little like a Mercury retrograde phase.  Words will not be coming out the way they are meant – emails will read like they have been put through a wash cycle and there is a good chance you will hear or read too much or too little into some or other communication.  I’m sure you can imagine how frustrating that is for a sign that prides herself on perfect presentation at all times and in all circumstances.

The thing I absolutely love about astrology is just when you think everything is doom and gloom – you only have to look a little further into the chart to find some wonderful, exciting life changer.  And in the midst of all the dark clouds and sunless sky (which has been only too true for those of us living in the southern states of Australia) is a trine aspect to the new moon from Uranus.  This planet is known for throwing the cat among the pigeons – expect the unexpected as they say.  So for as much as Virgo will want exactness and Saturn will want duty and responsibility and Venus is being hidden by the powerful sun – there will be a touch of craziness about the next few weeks.  Let’s hope Uranus gets his way over and above all the rest.
 
Image by Nene Thomas
 
Aquarius Full Moon - Friday 31 July - 8:43pm (AEST) - Sun at 07° Leo 56' and Moon at 07° Aquarius 56'

We have come to the half way mark of this Cancerian moon cycle.  The moon is now full – it not only illuminates the night skies but also our minds and hearts with understanding and personal wisdom.  The full moon is a time of integration – integrating what the moon was offering at the time it was new with the message it brings when it is full.

This full moon is in Aquarius.  From an astrology point of view Aquarius is about as far from the energies of Cancer as you can get.  At the time of the new moon we were reminded of mothers and mothering and mothering ourselves, we were reminded of the importance of family and we were made aware of what we do for ourselves to help us feel safe and secure.

Now we have an antithesis energy - Aquarians simply don’t do family – they are solitary beings - the womb idea would seem claustrophobic the extreme – the Great Mother would certainly be one an Aquarian could identify with under the guise of how the earth feeds and shelters him when he is off on an camping/hiking holiday – alone and far off any known tourist track.

Cancer is about the immediate needs of life – home, food, safety – Aquarius says the planet is my home, the bush gives me food and safety is a state of mind.  Whereas Cancer lives for their immediate and extended family– Aquarians do friends and acquaintances – in short doses.

So what are we being shown here – what are we needing to integrate.  Aquarians would say to Cancer – you live too much in each other’s pockets, you are way too inwardly focussed, you live in the past – you get upset at the smallest of things.  Aquarians see life from a much bigger perspective.   The main concern for an Aquarian is not what are we having for dinner tonight – it is more to do with finding solutions to world poverty or cure for cancer or AIDs or whatever disease or medical plight a nation or race of peoples are fighting.  The Aquarian mind doesn’t stay at home either – its mind is out in the universe somewhere – gliding amongst the planets, the moon and stars.

So the integration story lies in bringing together the home and family with the much greater idea that the earth and all its peoples are our home and family – in fact our home and family can go much wider than that.  The Aquarian thinking would have us take into our understanding the idea that our planet earth is part of a solar system family and our family could consist of life forms in other dimensions to this one.

As usual the planets give us another clue on how to integrate the message of the full moon.  Just as when the moon was new and our attention was focussed on home matters – so too did two planets go retrograde – meaning they took their energies inward.  Venus and Uranus will affect us far more on a personal level rather than playing out on the world stage.  (Venus for six weeks, Uranus for five months).
 
Now that the energies of the moon cycle are bringing our attention to a much wider viewpoint – so too do we get a planetary movement to back that story.  Saturn will station (stand still in the heavens) on Sunday 2 August and return to a forward motion on Tuesday 4 August.  Saturn has been travelling backwards through the tail end of Scorpio for over six weeks now and will take approximately another six weeks to leave Scorpio behind for another thirty years or so.  These last few weeks as Saturn goes direct is our last chance - if you like - to work through such issues as our fear of death, our fear of intimacy and or sex, our fear of partnership on any level.  It’s a little like our Aquarian full moon – that energy doesn’t do intimacy or partnership either.  So we certainly have a theme here of checking in with ourselves around the idea of how trusting are we of others in life, how free and easy are we in sharing our deepest thoughts and desires, would we prefer to stay quiet on some unspoken issues that seem to stir up in the middle of the night or are we able to find the courage to ask for someone’s help.  Discernment is needed.
 
Image from www.b-c-ing-u.com
 
Cancer New Moon – 16 July 2015 – 11:24am (AEST) – Sun & Moon at 23° Cancer 14'

There is simply nothing like a good night’s sleep – it plainly works wonders on our state of mind and physical being.  We spend hundreds of dollars on good mattresses that help ensure we get that vital seven, eight or nine hours of complete rest.  Nothing is quite like that state of oblivion where the mind has stopped its chatter - where our cares and woes are put aside for a while and where we can once again be reminded on some level that there is peace and bliss somewhere in the universe.  
It could be said that this desire for a good night’s sleep comes from the (unconscious) memory of the time we were in the womb.  On cold winter’s nights it is as if we are replicating that warm inner sanctuary of comfort and safety - its where for many of us we curl up into a ball (foetal position) and in some way replicate a state of well being on all levels.
 
The constellation of Cancer is assigned just this type of energy.  It has under its patronage all things to do with mothering, the womb, nurturing, feeling safe and secure.  When we are hurt, fearful, lost, overwhelmed our primal self looks to the safety of mother’s arms and reassuring words.  Many soldiers may have died on the battlefield with a photo of their sweetheart in their breast pocket but it was their mothers they were calling for in their dying moments.  And from the other side of the story – we have mothers who will go to the ends of the earth for their children.  There are mothers who sit in a courtroom to supporting their boy – who could stand accused of the most horrific crime – abandoned by all except his mother.  The umbilical cord may be cut straight after birth but the ties that bind a mother to her children are never cut.  Whether we have the best mother or the worst – we are bound to her memory.

This new moon, then, raises within our consciousness those associated states of being that are attributed to mothering.  New moon rituals could be focussed on how we mother ourselves.  We could go beyond the physical mother and call on mother earth to embrace us with her natural gifts.  We might call on the spiritual mothers or grandmothers who are available on a metaphysical level to remind us how to unconditionally love ourselves.  

The need to nurture ourselves, to learn to recognise our gifts and talents and to make best possible use of them has been a theme since the Uranus Pluto Square beginning in 2012.  Yes there are many outer world manifestations of that square – but from a personal perspective it was always the intention of the universe to have us stand on our two feet – not give our power away to others.  There are plenty of ongoing examples of this on the world stage – the latest being the “no” vote by the Greek citizens to the EU bailout conditions.  But as always change comes essentially from within and the greatest activator of change is love.  So we are asked first and foremost to love ourselves.

Ongoing planetary aspects have continued this theme wherein each of us is called into taking responsibility for their place on the planet.  This new moon is no different.  Sitting right beside the sun moon conjunction is a similarly tight conjunction of Mercury and Mars – also both in Cancer.  Mercury in Cancer is about relating to ourselves and others with empathy and compassion (that’s its best manifestation).  When Mars is in Cancer he tends not to be so outwardly assertive but rather takes action only after checking in intuitively before moving forward.  (Many call Mars in Cancer a wimp but in reality even the God of War is called to account for his brutish behaviour sometimes).  Putting Mercury and Mars together in the mothering sign of Cancer indicates that we are now in a good place to go within and start relating to ourselves with self love and respect.  

Now if you think you already do that pretty well – Pluto, the planet of uncovering the real truth of the matter, is sitting exactly opposite the Mercury Mars conjunction – meaning that there will be opportunities within the next few days or weeks to be “tested” on how well you love yourself – how much respect and care you really have for yourself.

And further to those planetary configurations, we have Venus – the planet of love – going retrograde on 26 July.  The retrograde Aphrodite takes her love for others inward and turns it into a love for herself.  (Again a retrograde Venus/Aphrodite at its worse can be associated with narcissism).  But for the sake of those who seek the best possible revelation of this energy – it is about honestly assessing how well we love all aspects of our being.

In writing this piece on the Cancer new moon I am reminded of Ghandi’s words:  "We but mirror the world.  All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body.  If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change.  As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him.  This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do".
[From  The Collected Works of M. K. Gandhi, published by The Publications Division, New Delhi, India.]
 
From this came the quote:  Be the change you wish to see in the world.

Image by Arlene Graston
 
Gemini New Moon – 17 June 2015 – 00:04am (AEST)  Sun & Moon at 25° Gemini 07'
 
Gemini – which is ruled by Mercury – is an energy many of us have been working with – or at least were made very aware of – over the last few weeks due to the Mercury retrograde phase which officially ended just a few days ago – 13 June.  It’s the communication side of Gemini that seems to cop the most flack when its ruler is retrograde.
 
Of course there is much more to Gemini than just all forms of communication.  The Roman god Mercury had as his main occupation the delivery of messages from the gods to the mortals and vice versa.  Mercury had that distinctive honour of being able to live in two realms.  Living with, engaging with, speaking the language of the gods was as much a second nature to Mercury as it was to live amongst the mortals, engage with them and speak their language.  Mercury – and the realm he rules, Gemini – has two homes.  The idea of “two of anything” is what helps Gemini stand apart from the other zodiac signs.  Gemini ruled people like that idea that they have a choice – like Mercury they can’t be pinned down to one home.
 
Bringing us down more into the mortal side of life this Gemini new moon is Mars – who sits right on top of the sun and moon at the exact time of the sun moon conjunction.
 
Normally when Mercury stations in the heavens after a retrograde phase – it becomes quite focussed as it prepares to recover lost ground and get on with the business of exploring new territory.  I liken those few days to racing cars all lined up in their positions, engines revving, drivers focussed and everyone waiting for the flag to drop.  It takes just a few seconds for the cars to move through the gears, negotiate the first corner and then give it all until the car is in full “flight”.
 
This image is never more true following this recent Mercury retrograde - considering Mars is holding poll position.  Mars is the god of war and we could think of the racing car drivers as about to go to war on the race track.  Mars is about passion, it is about drive, it is about taking action and more importantly it is about winning.  Mars goes at full throttle, it takes no prisoners, it has no understanding of losing.  Second place is another word for losing by the way.
So this new moon in Gemini, which is ruled by the recent retrograde Mercury – who by the way is now in starting position on the race track – who also has the rev, energy and passion of Mars to drive it to the finishing line - is propelling us all forward in some way or other.  For some of us we may feel like we are in a race of some sorts – maybe we have (impossible) deadlines to meet, maybe we have projects to deliver or maybe we are cramming for midyear exams.
 
In astrological terms, Mars is grouped with the inner most planets of Mercury, Venus, and the moon to denote what is referred to as the personal planets.  Each one of us will determine how the energies of these planets will work in our lives – the birth chart being the best indicator of this.  Depending on where Mars is in your birth chart will depend on whether you are in one of those racing cars or you are in the crowd cheering the drivers on or you at home watching the race on TV OR you totally couldn’t give a stuff about the whole thing.  So depending on how you Mars is situated is how you will experience this new moon.  If you have a fiery Mars (Mars in Aries, Leo or Sagittarius) then the chances are you wanting to get ahead, take some sort of action, win some sort of race.  If your Mars is in an earth sign (Taurus, Virgo or Capricorn) then this new moon phase will feel more like a time of needing to consider your options before hitting the road.  Mars in an air sign (Gemini, Libra or Aquarius) people could very well find themselves verbally “shooting off at the hip” - whilst a Mars in the water signs of Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces will find the going slow, sluggish, two steps forward and one back – definitely not a race winner here.

 

Sagittarius Full Moon – 3 June – 2:18am (AEST) – Sun at 11° Gemini 49' – Moon at 11° Sagittarius 49'

We are now at the half way mark of the Taurus moonth.  Back when the sun and moon were sitting together in the sign of the bull we began a lunar cycle which suggested we might want to slow down somewhat and take the time to smell the roses – take the time to engage with our surroundings.  For those who were able to take time out to engage with the natural world – the reminder of life away from the usual stress and fast paced frenzy might have opened a space within which gave you a glimpse of something other than the usual routine of life.
 
I don’t know about you but when I finally get around to booking a massage and after getting comfortable on the massage table and relaxing into the luxury of having someone unwind my muscles – it’s not long before I drift off into what could be called a mediative state or otherness state.  It’s state of mind that doesn’t include worries, stress, tension – it’s a state of mind that allows me to rediscover the meaning of the word “peace”.  The same sort of thing happens when you go away for holidays.  It takes a little time to unwind, to forget about all the mundane chores you have left behind and give yourself permission to fully enter into the purpose of the holiday – which for most people is to relax, unwind, find some peace and tranquillity.

Once we get into this state of being – this mind state – we tend to see the bigger picture of life.  Our focus opens out, we get to remember our dreams, we recall the plans we had laid out for ourselves and our life, we relive that time in life when everything seemed so less stressed, so less pressured and we wonder where all those dreams and aspirations went.

This is the crux of the Sagittarius full moon – this is what the fullness of the Taurus lunar cycle is asking of us.  Yes to stop and smell the roses – which of course is only a metaphor for taking the time out to connect with our surroundings – not just notice them but engage with them on a sensual level.  You’ll know if you have fully engaged with nature, with your body, with the food you eat or your loved ones because your focus will shift from mundane to bigger picture – to otherness.  This is Sagittarius – think of the image of Sagittarius – the centaur with his bow and arrow – arrow pointed to the heavens – the aim is to hit the stars.  Likewise when we dream, when we recall our plans, hopes, visions we realise that we too were aiming for the stars.

This full moon is pulling the planet Neptune into the picture.  It is in a square aspect between the sun and moon.  Squares are about stress and tension.  Neptune rules our dream state – our dreams – our bigger picture version of life.  The thing is when we are in the middle of life – when life is about deadlines we don’t really want to dream, we don’t have time, dreams can bring up all sorts of (inner) challenges, there’s not an ounce of reality about a dream and so dreams become frustrating and just raise the stress levels.  Dreams then end up being pushed into the background of life and the busyness of life takes over again.   Hence when the heavens send out energies that remind us of the bigger picture, remind us to shoot for the stars, remind us of the drams and plans we laid out for ourselves before reality took over – we get to feel stress and tension – instead of peace and tranquillity.

But true to the beauty of the universe – it has also added a fire trine to the full moon picture.  A fire trine is astro speak for a gift of inspiration, passion, drive, energy.  It is a gift – so you get to choose whether you want to accept it or not – but if you do run with this fire trine then know you have the backing of the heavens to reinspire yourself, reinspire your dreams, reignite the plans you made for yourself when you were younger or on holidays one time and the whole world seemed brighter and lighter.

On top of that – we currently have the sun in Gemini – Mars and Mercury are also there.  Gemini is about ideas, it is about gathering information, it is about filling the mind with facts (and fiction), it is about a restlessness for knowledge BUT as this time the ruler of Gemini is retrograde – meaning we go within for our ideas, facts, knowledge wisdom.  

My personal take on this Sagittarius full moon is when we stop and smell roses and we take a further few minutes out to allow that rose scent to transport way out beyond the stars - we are in line with the current energies.

 

Taurus New Moon – 18 May 2015 – 2:13pm (AEST) – Sun & Moon 26°Taurus 55'

After the first Mercury retrograde cycle of the year – 21 Jan to 11 Feb – whilst Mercury was traveling through Aquarius – all sights were set on the second cycle only because that first one was such a “doozy”.  People are still taking about the effects of that Jan/Feb retrograde and now that we stand at the brink of the second round of the Mercurial trickster’s plans over the next three weeks - we are all a little more than edgy.  It is then a little harder than normal to take our eyes off the anticipated mayhem that may be unleashed on our computers, mobile technology devices, on travel plans, on all modes of transport, on the timetables that go with public transport, on contracts and agreements, on buying and selling goods, on sending information or goods, on the spoken and written word and so the list goes on.

But our eyes must be diverted for we also have a new lunar cycle beginning in the sign of Taurus and here the message is very different – but somehow also most appropriate.  At the time the sun and moon join forces in the sign of the bull we are asked to slow down and consider the simple things of everyday life.  Taurus gives much energy and devotion to the senses – sight, smell, sound, taste and touch.  We need to tune into our bodies to engage with any of these senses.  It’s the old saying – “you need to stop and smell the roses” and that’s exactly what Taurus wants of us – to stop, slow down and immerse ourselves in our surroundings.  I’m sure most of us are sick of hearing about how rushed and pressured our lives have become – but here is one way in which we can appreciate how we may have lost touch with our sensual interaction with the world around us.

To smell the roses we indeed need to stop walking and talking and take our attention to the act of inhaling and registering scent.  Likewise with taste – we need to have our meals with our attention focused on the food we eat – not thrown down our throat on the run between lunchtime errands or in front of the TV where our attention is on the news of the day.  To feast our eyes on the beauty of life we need to escape the big city’s smog and pollution and go into nature – walk barefoot on the sand, let the water run over your toes, sit on a cliff edge and take in the vista before you.  Touch is not a rushed hug goodbye on the way to work – touch is sensual in itself – touch is also an act of engagement with another – touch is the idea of holding another’s hand in times of great joy and great sadness – it is reaching out and saying I am here for you.

So to engage with any of the senses we need to slow down.  None of the real beauty of life can be fully appreciated when we are stuck in a fast mode of operation.  Now here’s the really neat way the universe has contrived to have a Taurus new moon just two days ahead of a Mercury retrograde period – the intention for both is to SLOW DOWN.  The reason the trains are running later than normal, the traffic is more chaotic than usual, the computer is slower or crashing every half hour, or the reason those signed contracts are not yet in the mail is because the universe is asking you to slow down – stop and smell the roses.  It is definitely not an invitation to get more stressed or pressured or angry and upset – it’s asking you to step outside and engage in the simplicity and beauty of everyday life.

The ruler of the new moon is Venus and she is currently residing in Cancer – the sign of the mother.  This new moon’s ruler is asking that you mother yourself – nurture yourself – nourish yourself with all that is good for your mind, body and soul.  Fast paced, frenetic living habits don’t tend to have positive effects on the body.  Slowing down and taking in the scenery can help lower the blood pressure, slow the heart rate, clear your mind and give your body a chance to realign with its natural bio-rythymical responses.

And if you are after an image to hold through this new lunar cycle – go no further than the Taurus mascot – the bull.  See him sitting in the meadow, chewing his cud, daisies growing all around him, birds landing on his back, sun warming his hide.  He is content, he is happy; he is taking in the scenery.  His life is simple and sensual.  But of course if you want him to join you in the rat race of life – just wave the red flag and he will be off and running amok – a little like most of us who run our lives to deadlines.

Scorpio Full Moon – 4 May 2015 – 1:42pm (AEST)  moon at 13°Scorpio 23'

The thing about Scorpio is: we are talking deep, into the depths, harsh reality, no mucking around the edges of a situation here – this is facing the truth with eyes wide open.  It’s not for nothing that not too many people can handle the brutality of Scorpio.  But every so often we get a wakeup call and we find we can no longer avoid the elephant in the room.

For many of us we tend to want to water down bad news.  We skirt around an issue that we are sure is going to upset someone or cause a fall out or end a perfectly good relationship.  We tend to think: if we just ignore a certain situation for long enough maybe it will go away and we can be let off the hook.  That sort of thinking sits well with the Taurean way of handling difficult, potentially emotional and or upsetting situations.  The myth of King Midas – which sits beautifully with the Taurus energy – tells of the king’s inability to face his “deformed” children – so he has them locked in the dungeons of the castle.  It’s that out of sight out of mind mentality.

The same attitude is reflected with the Sabian symbol that goes with the sun in Taurus in this full moon interchange.  The symbol is: “On the beach, children play, while shellfish grope at the edge of the water”.  Here we see that attitude of everything is fine – children playing at the beach – no doubt the sun is shining and everyone is having a fun time.  That is while shellfish grope at the edge of the water – here is that idea of skirting around the edge of an issue.  One of those shellfish could be well be a nasty crab with its pinchers arched and ready to snap at one of the children – but we don’t look at that  - we look at the children playing, having fun.  Likewise we put our head in the sand (pardon the pun) and hope those shellfish will have moved on the next time we look that way.

In opposition to the Taurus sun is the Scorpio moon – an energy that demands we face the truth.  The Sabian symbol for the moon is:  “telephone lineman at work installing new connections”.  Unfortunately for those of us who have spent a lifetime of avoiding those Scorpio type life issues (death for instance – your death, the death of your loved one, the death of your parents, the death of your children – when was the last time you spoke of death with your nearest and dearest) the mental traffic lane within the brain that runs with these “difficult” subjects has long been overgrown with weeds and fallen rocks.  Along comes the linemen – clearing the rubble and reopening the connections so you can deal with those “out of sight out of mind” issues.

Now the symbol does say “new” connections.  One of the other functions of Scorpio is to show us that when we face our worst fears they are never as bad as we think.  To start a conversation with your very elderly parent about their impending death and what that will mean to you is something the majority of us avoid at all costs.  Yet for the brave souls who venture into this territory, the rewards are immense.  The very elderly parent is relieved to talk about something that is staring them in them in face and the child is relieved that they have had the chance to tell their parent what they mean to them. 

Of course death is one extreme of the Scorpio spectrum.  We have fears around all sorts of things.  What most of know is: when we face our fear – when we stand up in front of strangers and give a presentation, when we walk to the top of the Sydney Harbour bridge, when we hold a bottle with a poisonous spider inside, when we jump out of a plane, when we go up to that girl/boy we really like and introduce ourselves – once we have done that terribly frightening thing – we are never the same again – fear (well that particular fear at least) has no more hold on us.  And that is the transformation part of the Scorpio energy. 

Sitting in a square aspect to the sun and the moon is the gift bearing planet of Jupiter.  His function in this full moon story is to support that concept of stepping outside our comfort zone and facing a big – or small – fear and allowing the resultant healing to flow through our veins.  Now square aspects are tension packed dilemmas – it’s the “do I don’t I?” scenario.  Whilst this full moon is in play the tension will be building around something in your life that you know needs to be addressed but to address it will mean confronting a certain amount of fear.  Jupiter is there with a promise that you will be well rewarded for your efforts.

Libra Full Moon & Total Lunar Eclipse – 4 April 2015 – 11:05pm (AEDT)

If you – like me - are thinking “didn’t we just have a total lunar eclipse?” then you – like me – are right – in fact this is the third total lunar eclipse in what will be a series of four eclipses.  The first two eclipses in this series were on 15 April 2014 – then 8 October 2014 – the last one will be on 28 September this year.  This one and the 8 October 2014 one are the only two in which those of us living in the eastern states of Australia will see in its entirety.  And yes it is rare to have three four or five total lunar eclipses in a row.  You can read a couple of more facts – if you are interested – over here.

Now from an astrology point of view – here is the really interesting thing about these eclipses – they all fall across the Aries Libra axis.  This eclipse has the moon in Libra – sun in Aries.  The previous eclipse of 8 October had the moon in Aries – sun in Libra and the last one coming up will have the moon in Aries – sun in Libra.  Lets add to that extended seven month visit by Mars in Libra (Dec 2013 – July 2014) – normally Mars stays in a sign for around six weeks – not over six months!!!  So now we can see a bit of a theme happening here.

Aries has been highlighted in its own way over the last few years with one half this century’s game changer aspect setting up camp here since June 2010.  Uranus – as part of the Uranus Pluto square – has been forcing change around the way we see ourselves.  Uranus has been breaking down old belief patterns that many of our parents held for way too long – beliefs like “the doctor/priest/government knows best” in other words we citizens just do as we are told.  The baby boomers led the way in changing that belief – they were out on the streets in force since the time of the Vietnam War.  But this is a greater call to arms then what we saw in the ‘60’s.  This is an internal sense of empowerment.  This is the idea that we are an individual with individual ideas & rights BUT we are also part of a worldwide community made up of billions of individuals.

Libra – as the opposite sign to Aries is the focus of this full moon & total lunar eclipse.  As we saw Mars (ruler of Aries and no friend of Libra) continued the Uranus revolution during the first half of 2014.  Eclipses have continued the theme since then.  And here is why - Libra is about peace, fairness, harmony and equality – it also holds sway over beauty, colour, design and has a great way of combining those talents in such careers as interior design.  BUT the real essence of Libra lies in the manner in which Libra creates that sense of peace, harmony and equality.  For the greater part it does it through keeping its mouth shut, avoiding querulous persons, staying away from contentious issues – it is known as a sign that couldn’t make a decision to save its life.  Relationships also fall under Libra’s spotlight and we all want harmonious and peaceful relationships – but again at what price – do we really want partners that keep their mouths shut to avoid confrontation (well some might). 
Notice how Libra rules equality.  In equality we have two people with equal rights to speak, express opinions, have desires, take sides – we don’t have one dominating the other, we don’t have one in a constant state of acquiescence.  Equality in all relationships is a theme coming through these first years of this century.  By all relationships I include those ones our parents told us were sacrosanct – but we will leave that task to the other half of this century’s game changer - Pluto – who has been doing a great job revealing the truth around those “idolised” men of the past.  By the way Uranus and Pluto are intimately tied up to this total lunar eclipse.

Eclipses – while awe inspiring sights in themselves – are powerful times of inner and outer change.  (I have heard so many stories of people affected by the total solar eclipse two weeks ago).  Lunar eclipses are mostly to do with inner change.  Libra has a lot going on internally – there are all those times when Libra would have loved to speak out, argue a point, give their opinion or simply tell someone they are absolutely ridiculous.  All those “upsetting” ideas, thoughts, opinions, concerns are bottled up inside.  Lunar eclipses expose what is hidden from view – the things we hide behind, the things we hide inside.  Our familiar image of the wolf howling at the full moon shows us how there comes a time when those things bottled up inside need releasing.  Full moons in themselves can turn some of “crazy” – add a total eclipse to the picture and we may all feel a little “looney” over the next few weeks.

 

Pisces New Moon & Total Solar Eclipse - 20 March 2015 at 8:35pm (AEDT) - Sun & Moon at 29° Pisces 27'

This is truly a most exciting time - I am in awe of how the universe has contrived to have such wonderful energies, alignments and vibrations all together at this really auspicious time.

Firstly let's give honour to the fact that we stand on the verge of new astrological year.  On Saturday 21 March at 9:46am (AEDT)  - so just over thirteen hours after the new moon and solar eclipse - the sun will move over that invisible line from Pisces into Aries - meaning that Saturday 21 March will also host the Vernal/Autumn Equinox in the southern hemisphere and the Spring Equinox in the Northern hemisphere - equinox being the time of equal day and equal night.  The pagans will celebrate Mabon in the southern hemisphere and Ostara in the Northern hemisphere - so yes lots to celebrate.

Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac - 29° of Pisces is at the extreme edge of the zodiac - the next step will take us over into 00° Aries and at this point we start a whole new cycle.  In layman's terms this is the equivalent to 11:59pm 31 December - the next tick of the clock will have us at 12midnight on 1 January.  Traditionally around the time of new year's eve we tend to do this inner review of the last twelve months - have we achieved any significant results - are we in a better place now than we were this time last year.  We also come to the new year with hope - hope that the new year will be kind to us,  hope that we will meet that very special person, hope that we will finally catch the boss's eye and get that job or pay rise we have been after, hope that the children will stay within reasonable boundaries and so on.  We also have this idea at the time of new year's eve that we should close the door on some old "bad" habits - like giving up smoking, excessive alcohol and chocolate.  It's like giving ourselves a fresh start and leaving behind those "bad" habits that got in the way of manifesting last year's resolutions. In the natural world that is pretty much what we do around the time of the equinox as well.  Except this year we have the added emphasis of a 29° new moon and a total solar eclipse.

Solar eclipses have been likened to the idea of a computer hard disk clean up or reboot.  The system scans its way through all the files - deleting the old and unnecessary ones.  Imagine the universe scanning through your being and deleting old behaviour and thought patterns - even people, memories and habits that no longer serve a purpose on our soul journey.   Another way of looking at the effects of the solar eclipse - as April Elliott Kent points out - is to think that something is trying to get our attention.  If we think of the physical phenomena of an eclipse our attention is surely drawn to the slow demise of the sun behind the moon - the darkness that accompanies such a marvel and the eerie stillness that seems to overcome all nature during the eclipse phase.  Maybe something on that level needs to happen in your life to gain your notice.

The significance of a new moon at 29° Pisces dovetails beautifully into the solar eclipse.  Pisces - being the last sign of the zodiac - is associated with endings.  And of course with endings we have beginnings - hence the two fish of the Pisces sign - one looking to the past, one looking to the future.  In Pisces we clear out the old and make way for the new - like the fish we deal with the past and look to the future.  Sometimes we get stuck in the past - sometimes we think that the old ways are the best ways.  But usually we find that once we have mastered something it's time to take on a new challenge.  This is where the new moon at that critical 29° mark and the solar eclipse are working in unison.  This astrological new year's eve - combined with new moon and with a solar eclipse is so packed with energy that its like the major firework displays we have around the world when we sit on the brink of a new year.  So for this year at least - our intentions should not be pithy - the energies of this new moon are anything but this - we need to set the bar high - use what the universe is giving us to make great leaps forward in working towards our very best selves.

For those who like the facts - this total solar eclipse will only be seen in the far north reaches of the planet.  The point at which the sun is totally blocked by the moon is between Iceland and the coast of Norway in the Norwegian Sea.
For those who would like to know more about the personal effects of the solar eclipse - head over to planetary postings plus where you will be guided step by step through your birth chart to see the effects of this eclipse on you.

Artwork by Cedar - www.artbycedar.com.

 

Virgo Full Moon - 6 March 2015 - 5:05am (AEDT) - Sun 14° Pisces 50'  Moon 14° Virgo 50' 

As mentioned in the last newsletter there was much talk over the previous new moon as to whether it should be read as an Aquarian new moon - due to the fact that the moon moved into Pisces less then a minute later and the sun moved on three minutes later.  In opening out the playing field and taking into view the many other extraordinary astrological events that will take place in this next two weeks - the answer to whether we call it an Aquarius lunar cycle, a Pisces lunar cycle or as some astrologers are calling it a hybrid cycle became clearer as we approached this Virgo full moon. 

Virgo is about order, cleanliness, filing cabinets, matching socks, clear desks and clear minds.  When Virgo energy enters the fray - as it is doing this full moon - on some level in our lives we strive to bring order into our lives.  It can be simply be sorting out the third drawer or clearing away two weeks of accumulated stuff from the end of the kitchen bench or wherever stuff is "dumped" in your place.  It can go to the extreme of wardrobe clean outs, washing the car, spring cleaning the house.  These of course are physical manifestations of the sign. There is the inner manifestation - clearing out the mind of useless worry and anxiety - taking some time out to meditate or sit in nature so that the true peace of the Pisces season can take over your being.

But it is the clearing out thing about Virgo that set me thinking.  Looking from wider perspective we are now in the final two weeks of the astrological year.  When the sun crosses over into Aries on 21 March - something that is known as the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere and the autumn (vernal) equinox in the southern hemisphere we actually start a whole new astrological cycle.  Many of us are familiar with the concept of cleaning out old stuff in preparation for new beginnings.  To make room for the new - we need to get rid of the old.  New doors don't open until old ones are closed.  The bible has this saying about never putting new wine in old skins - the Chinese prepare for their wonderful New Year celebrations a few weeks prior - one of those preparations is to clean the house.  So this full moon in Virgo really fits in nicely with concept that as we are about to enter a new astrological cycle we need to do some cleaning out which is what Virgo is so good at.

In a way the universe is doing her own clearing out.  On 17 March one of the longest planetary aspect pairings of out time will come to an end.  This is the Pluto Uranus square which first came into being on 24 June 2012.  These two have been dancing together just over two and half years and their impact on the planet has been phenomenal.  The effects have been felt on a global level even to the extent that the word PLUTOcrat is now in common parlance.  The rising up of the masses against right wing power groups or dictatorial forces is the most common expression of this pairing.  The fact that the 17 March exact aspect is the last is by no means the end of the story.  From an aspect point of view these two will continue to be in each others sights until early 2016.  And that brings in the reason why we have the second planetary event in the final two weeks of the year - Saturn moving into a retrograde phase on 15 March that will continue until 2 August.  This retrograde will see Saturn return to Scorpio where it was for most of the time during the Pluto Uranus square. 

On a personal level the combination of Saturn in Scorpio and the Pluto Uranus square was the reason so many of us have had lives that resembled a mine field these last almost three years.  We have had this relative calm period since the start of the year with Saturn moving into Sagittarius - 24 December - Sagittarius being a lighter and far more unrestrained energy as opposed to Scorpio's intense dark and deep energy.  So continuing the theme of "clearing out" - these powerful punch throwing planets are doing their own clearing out job on us - one that will last through to early next year.

A little closer to home - this full moon has a power all of its own.  The full moon chart has Mars in his own sign - Aries - sitting exactly next to the lunar south node - both at 10° of Aries - Uranus at 14° Aries and Venus at 15° Aries.  This combination gives me an image of us doing that New Year's house cleaning in double quick time - like we are on drugs or some other substance.  The real thing is that coming into the new year we have a bank up of energy in a sign that demands we look at ourselves.  What do I want from the new year ahead, what will I value, what fears does my soul want to eliminate?

And for the New Year's Party - a total solar eclipse right on New Year's Eve - 20 March (AEDT) - a detailed analysis of this and its effects on you will be available in the Planetary Postings Plus newsletter before the event.

These next two weeks are absolutely a time of preparation - for clearing and cleaning out.
And back to the query at the start of this newsletter - Aquarius, Pisces or hybrid lunar cycle - does it really matter when we look at the bigger picture.

I would like to thank Emily Trinkaus of Virgo Magic (how appropriate) and Jo Tracey for a blog she wrote just recently with Virgo in mind for setting these thoughts in action.

 

Aquarius New Moon - 19 Feb 2015 - 10:47am AEDT - sun & moon at 29° Aquarius 59'



Western society based astrologers are all abuzz over the fact that this new moon falls on the extreme last degree and minute of  the zodiac constellation of Aquarius.  So close to the end of this sign is the new moon that less than one minute of clock time later and the moon has already moved into Pisces - three minutes of clock time later and the sun has moved on as well.  So yes - the extreme last degree and minute.  The other thing that makes this a stand out new moon is that the last new moon was also in Aquarius - this time at the extreme start of the sign.  That all happened on 21 January when the sun and moon were just nine minutes of solar arc into the water bearer's area of our universe.  So the extreme start of Aquarius and the extreme end. 
New moons at the very start of a sign fit in nicely with the overall concept of a new moon.  The beginning of a new lunar cycle means we begin a new energy pattern - we are invited to attune to a new vibration.  Having a new moon sit at the end of a sign means we need to back track over the previous cycle and review our connection to the energies that have just preceded us.  To have two new moons in the same sign suggests to me that the message of that sign is so important - especially to the current situation - that we get two gos at ensuring the message has sunk in.  The other thing about this new moon is that exceptional 29° 59'.

Most astrologers will run with the concept that the 29th degree of a sign is a degree that holds a great deal of pressure.  It's like when you are high school or college and you are sitting your final exams before school life finishes forever.  You can almost taste the freedom - but oh boy - the pressure of the exams - the need to get all your learning into one or two essays.  Just for a moment lets paint the picture - you are sitting an exam - you are keeping an eye on the clock - you start your last question - you recognise you have thirty minutes to get your ideas onto paper.  You are writing away - all is going well - you have a few things you want to add to shore up your argument - you look up and see you only have two minutes of time left.  The pressure has just quadrupled.  So you could say we are under pressure here to get things right.

You know astrology doesn't usually leave you with throw away lines or broad spectrum statements - it is usually more specific than that.  So lets look at what we might need to be specifically looking at.  As mentioned less than a minute after the sun and moon join up - the moon moves into Pisces.  Two days later and the moon sits at 00° Aries - so does Mars and so does Venus - so moon mars venus are all at 00° Aries - which also means we have a Venus Mars conjunction.  That in itself is not such a stand out event - it happens at least once every year.  But this year we get three of these conjunctions and that is special - so special that we go - OK what's the story here.  Well there are various interpretations of a Mars Venus union.  John Grey's book:  Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus is not far off the money.  The glyph for Mars - - is a fairly familiar symbol that most people recognise as a sign representing males.  Likewise the glyph for Venus - - is most recognisable as the symbol for the feminine.  So when these two come together we have stories about men and women - the sexes and how they get on (or not).  When Mars and Venus sit side by side they are asking that we also see that the male and female sit side by side - so we talking equality of the sexes here and that's across the entire spectrum of life.  When one gets out of balance with the other we see things like domestic violence - an issue which is currently on the front pages of the Australian media.  A Mars Venus conjunction also talks to same sex unions, it talks to equal pay issues, it talks to abortion and any other legislation (secular or religious) that interferes with women's rights to her body.  That's just the start of the story.  From a spiritual point of view the evolution of humankind is asking that males get in touch with their femininity and likewise females with their masculinity.  Role playing, gender separateness no longer holds any place in current societal thinking.  Let's go here with the concept of enforced wearing of the burka for women in many middle eastern countries and religions.  That is an extreme - closer to home we are still grappling with (although much better at) a division of household chores when both partners are working.

So back to the new moon and our second chance to get the message.  Now that we have the message - the Mars and Venus story - we see how equality becomes an issue.  Equality is right up the Aquarius alley.  In the world of the water bearer there are no divisions as such - in this world we are all individuals - not a female or male individual but a human individual - Aquarius is androgynous.  And all of us as individuals make up the collective - we - each one of us contributes to the collective thinking, collective attitude, collective movement, collective opinion.  Our thoughts are ours but not ours alone - each thought becomes part of the greater thought. 

The concept of collective thought and movement is the driving force behind the current Uranus in Aries.  Uranus will meet up with Pluto for their final square aspect less than a month from now - but more on that next posting.

 

Leo Full Moon - 4 February 2015 at 10:09am (AEDT) - Sun 14° Aquarius 48'  Moon 14° Leo 48'

The Aquarius new moon cycle which began back on 21 January - had us focus on the big picture - the collective.  Now as we come up to half way mark of cycle we hone the focus back to the individual.  The Aquarius/Leo axis to me is all about the concept of many individuals making a whole.  And one of the best examples of this - I think - is the Bunnings adverts we see on TV - you know the bit at the end when the camera hones in on the employee and then widens to include his mate and then a few more mates and then a hundred or so mates - all the while the camera keeps moving backwards until the sea of faces merge together to make the Bunnings logo.  It starts with one and it ends in this unidentifiable mass. If you are not familiar with the advert here is a clip.

There was another way this concept played out over the last few days.  Here in Australia the school year started up again with most students heading back into the classroom on Friday 30 January.  Two of my grandchildren joined the throng of children heading through the school gates for the first time.  One minute it was the specialness of their first day - cameras capturing the moment as the little ones stood about feeling special and shining their fresh new uniforms.  The next minute they were lost in a sea of children all wearing the same attire and the individuality of each of these two precious grandchildren was swamped in a playground full of what seemed like identical children.  The reverse happened when the day was over.  Out of this swarming mass, two happy smiling faces seemed to slowly become more familiar than the many others around them and then suddenly there they were again - these two special individuals.

Of course there are many examples of this concept of many parts making a whole.  One such example is the computer screen I am looking at right now.  Whilst the image I see on the screen is just that - an entire image - the fact is this screen image is made up of many thousands of pixels.  And we all know the result if one of those pixels is not working.  If not - ask a graphic designer.

So the spotlight of this full moon in Leo falls on the individual.  It asks each of us to honour our own uniqueness - to allow our light to shine - to acknowledge our special talents and/or gifts - to understand the contribution each one of us makes to the whole, the collective.  Now sitting right next to the full moon is Jupiter.  The king of the Gods is known for his carefree, jovial personality.  Nothing fazes Jupiter - simply because if life gets even a little bit complicated he is off - on his bike in search of fun and a good time.  Whenever Jupiter connects with another planet we also get this expansiveness thing happening.  Jupiter doesn't do things by halves - if its fun - its a party the whole town is invited to - if its carefree - its a party where anything can happen - if its jovial - its big long belly laughs.  So we are not just sitting on the couch contemplating our uniqueness - we are about singing out loud our favourite song,  we are about  sashaying down the street in our new outfit that makes feel like a million dollars.  We need to get on board and own who we are - let our light shine - throw off the critics and the doomsayers.  Loud and proud people - that's whats required this full moon.

Oh yes there are other stories coming out of this full moon chart.  Venus and Neptune are sitting side by side - meaning we may not always see people or things or events for what they really are.  Mars has just bypassed Chiron - meaning some of us may had some old forgotten hurt or pain reignited.  And Mercury is still retrograde - don't we just know it.  (The first draft of this newsletter is lost somewhere in data space).  The real message of a Mercury retrograde phase is to reflect, review and revise - its not a time of business as usual.  So while we are reflecting lets turn the attention to how we add our special flavour to the entirety that is planet earth.



Aquarius New Moon - 21 January - 00:13am AEDT - Sun and Moon at 00:09 Aquarius.

This new moon chart looks awfully like the full moon chart we had just two weeks except, of course, the moon is now conjunct the sun - not opposite.  And the other obvious feature is that the sun and moon are now - just - into the sign of Aquarius.
The ruler of this new moon is Uranus and he is sitting right on top of south node - both are at 12° Aries with only three minutes of zodiacal latitude separating them.  From my perspective this is the outstanding feature of this new moon.  (For the purists I understand that Saturn is the old ruler of Aquarius and still holds sway - but just humor me for this posting).

From a soul astrology perspective Uranus represents our past traumas.  When we put that into the framework of the current generic chart we understand that trauma to be humankind based - not necessarily personal trauma.  So a conjunction between Uranus and the south node is speaking to traumas that have majorly affected planet earth and its inhabitants.  Sure we could come up with all sorts of scenarios that fit that description - tsunamis, earthquakes, volcanic explosions when thinking of mother earth type disasters.  We also have things like the great depression of the 1920/30s - we have war and famine - we have slavery and so the list goes on.  Each one of us - on an individual level - could very well have been personally involved in any of these upheavals.  But what I am looking at here is the collective memory held in the soul of the earth.

The types of crises referred to right now belong to the kind where the earth was on the brink of starting something new.  The Uranus south node conjunction is in Aries the first sign of the zodiac - a sign that is synonymous with pioneers, adventurers, trail blazers and the like. That the collective "we" stands on the edge of a new age is nothing unfamiliar to those who follow the newsletters, spiritual blogs or facebook pages of the great gurus.  We are being called forth to recognise our sacredness, our magnificence as spiritual beings, our working with the universe to manifest heaven here on earth.  In order to do that we need to let go of the fears that are attached to the past collective memories when the earth has wanted to move forward on a similar new path.  What springs to mind is the past attitude of the Roman Catholic Church to anyone or any belief system that has challenged its idea that it alone could decipher the word of god - think Cathars, think Knights Templar, think witch burnings, think Martin Luther and of course many others.  We see it at the moment with the radical Moslem uprisings.

Another idea of a entering a new pathway is that our piece of the universe is moving closer to what is referred to as the age of Aquarius.  That movement alone is creating energy shifts here on the earth.  The Age of Aquarius promises a time when the collective will no longer look to saviors or gurus to help guide us to a spiritual understanding.  The Buddhas, the Mohammeds and the Christs of yesteryear belong to the age of Pisces. The new age will see us determine our own way forward and that is not only in the realm of spirituality.  But first we need to heal the past memories.  That is one of the purposes of the current movement of Chiron in Pisces.

Also in Pisces - is Neptune and Mars - those two are also forming a very tight conjunction in this new moon chart - being just 23' apart.  Steven Forrest put out a wonderful recording back when Neptune first went into Pisces in which he reminded us that when Neptune transits its own home territory we usually respond by setting up new belief systems or religions.  One of his references in making that claim was 47-61AD transit in which St Paul set up the foundations of the Christian Church.  The crusades, the excommunication of Martin Luther, the Salem witch hunts, the Communist manifesto by Marx & Engels are other examples of Neptune in Pisces.  So we can see that we as a collective are certainly on the brink of a new something!!!

Aquarius itself is known as the sign of innovation, invention, fine intelligence - gifts which are used for the betterment of humankind.  As we stand at the start of this new moon then we are faced with the big picture story and/or challenge on how we as individuals - that make up the collective - can push through the current barriers, fears and past life soul memories so that we can gain the freedom we all desire.
And if that's a big ask - the universe is giving us two chances at it - for we will have another new moon in Aquarius on 19 February!!!

 

Cancer Full Moon - 5 January 2015 - 3:53pm (AEDT) -  moon at 14° Cancer 31'



Whenever the ongoing Pluto Uranus square is activated by other planets we are once again reminded of what will be the outstanding aspect feature of the early part of this century.  That hugely significant square is once again being highlighted - this time by the Cancer full moon.  Rather than fall back into another full rave about the importance of that Pluto Uranus square - I would like to look at it from an evolutionary viewpoint. 

In our natal (birth) chart - Pluto signifies the soul contract we signed at the start of this earthly journey.  In the transiting (ongoing daily) chart - Pluto signifies the evolutionary - soul - journey of the collective.  In this full moon chart Pluto sits exactly next to the sun - whose light is illuminating the full moon.  The ego of the collective (sun) and the soul of the collective (Pluto) are aligned in Capricorn.  The realm of the mountain goat demands that we work hard to achieve success in our chosen area of expertise.  Again like the mountain goat we strive to make it to the top of whatever mountain we are climbing - be it a personal, career, health, family, relationship, financial mountain we must continue to put one foot in front of the other until reach the summit.  Likewise the collective is climbing a mountain - this mountain has to do with reclaiming personal empowerment.  For too long we humans have given our power away to the Church, to governments, to large corporations and the like.  We did this at a time when we less confident of running our own affairs, so we gave that responsibility to those we believed could do a better job of it.  Now that we are more educated and have a greater understanding of the workings of social structures, we are starting to rebel and fight against those who wish to hold onto power and not release it back to the people.  So the collective consciousness of the earth's soul is wanting to see results, wanting to see a successful outcome around the concept of self governance, equality, fair distribution of wealth - really the general populace is wanting to take back control of their lives.  Currently we are in the process of attaining this goal.  Pluto's role - besides highlighting the current collective soul story is to ensure the contract is being fulfilled.  Should we as a society be found wanting - then Pluto will realign our priorities so the top of the mountain is back in view.
The alignment between Pluto and the sun will occur once a year - that bit is nothing new.  What makes this particular alignment so momentous is that it is bringing into consideration a full moon and Uranus and the lunar nodes.

The lunar nodes are currently sitting across the Aries/Libra axis - the south node - or collective past soul memory is in Aries.  The sign of the ram is one that talks to every man for himself whereas the north node - the collective soul urge is in Libra which talks to cooperation, partnership and equality.  Also in Aries is Uranus - the planet that talks to reform, change, the rights of the individual.  So much weight is given to reforming our idea of each man for himself.  The mission Uranus is presently undertaking is to empower each and every human with the idea that each person on the planet matters.  Every one of us must reclaim his/her own sense of self righteousness, own power and make a stand against those that would want to belittle that truth.

Now we add the full moon to the review story.  The moon is in Cancer - this is her home territory - making her strong, powerful and purposeful.  The moon in Cancer says - nurture yourself, be kind and gentle firstly to yourself and then to others - it says listen to your heart and make those words your personal credo.  The moon in Cancer is about our tribe.  Sometimes that means our family, sometimes that means those with whom you align your purpose, sometimes that means those who live in your immediate neighbourhood.  Whatever your tribe - Cancer represents a place where you feel secure, where you have a voice and you are heard, where you can lie down and sleep in relative safety.

So we have - Sun & Pluto in Capricorn (success, achievement), Uranus and South Node in Aries (the rights of the individual), North Node in Libra (equality for all) and the full moon in Cancer (self nurturing).  Lets put that into some sort of sentence that will give us the clue to this highly significant time in the evolution of the planet.   We could say that once we have nurtured ourselves and we feel safe and secure (moon in Cancer) we can expand our understanding and belief in self to the idea that we have the right to be seen and heard (Uranus and south node in Aries).  Once the rights of self have been sated we can look further afield and encompass all the tribes of the world  (north node in Libra) and once we have combined our energies to make this planet a better place for ALL who live here - we will have succeeded in climbing the current mountain of reclaiming true governance, true leadership and a fair go for all.

Herein lies the truly powerful message of this age as highlighted by today's full moon (and you thought this was just another bright big moon in the night sky!!). The Pluto Uranus square has one more exact line up before Uranus moves out of Pluto's force field.  That will happen on 17 May.  These two will have paired off seven times - the first time being 24 June 2012.  Once these two start to separate we will see what they have set up for us.  The real work around their message will then begin.  Many of us want to believe at the start of a new year that this year will be better than the last.  While in some ways that maybe the case - from where I sit we still have many lessons to learn with regards to the current planet soul's journey.  My wish for 2015 is that we join our energies in revealing the truth - uncover what is hidden from public view and public knowledge and work towards equality for all humankind.

Artwork by:  Art by Laura Diehl.  www.ldiehl.com/

 

Capricorn New Moon & Summer Solstice - 22 December - 12:37pm (AEDT) - Sun & Moon at 00° Capricorn 07'



Well it certainly is a full Capricorn energy day.  Not only do we have the sun and moon newly in the sign of the mountain goat but they join up with Mercury, Pluto and Venus who are already here.  The ruler of the Capricorn energy is Saturn and he himself makes quite a statement on Wednesday 24 December (AEDT) by moving on from Scorpio and into Sagittarius.  (There is a full description and personalisation of that event in Planetary Postings Plus).  And just for good measure tomorrow - Tuesday 23 December - we have Uranus coming out of its retrograde phase and moving forward once again.  So that's the astro lingo for what's happening - now let's put that into English!!

With five planets in Capricorn - just before Christmas - lets look firstly at what that means.  Capricorn has several images that well depict its energy.  Its own astrological symbol is the mountain goat.  Not sure if you have ever watched how mountain goats get themselves up the sides of sheer vertical cliff faces - if not here is a video clip to give you an idea of how awesome these creatures are.  All in all these animals are totally focused on where they need to go to - they would appear to be fearless in their endeavours - they are also well adapted to the terrain and have over the years become masters of negotiating their way through death defying topography.  So we can see that the Capricorn energy is focused, determined, death defying, fearless.  Capricorn is also depicted as the strict head master.  With this image we have the concept of and adherence to rules and regulations with severe consequences for those who step outside the boundaries.  Another image often associated with Capricorn is the grim reaper.  Here we have an image that usually instills fear - but more so it is an image that reminds us firstly of our mortality - something that puts most of us in a sombre mood.  It also reminds us - like the head master  - of the consequences in life when we fall off the wagon.  It's more like the fear of losing your job and the consequences of having to live on the dole or its more around the idea of the consequences of long term heavy smoking and drinking and a diet made up mostly of junk food - eventually the consequences of that type of lifestyle will catch up with you in some form or other.  So Capricorn is a pretty sober sort of bloke - not one to fool around with - no real sense of humor here.  Its more about knowing our boundaries and knowing how far we can push those boundaries before they give and then facing the usually severe consequences.

But here is the other side to Capricorn.  Do as you are told, follow the rules, set the path and follow it til the end and you will find a rich reward waiting for you.  Think of the mountain goat when he gets to the top of an impossibly high and impassable cliff face.  The views would have to be outstanding.  Likewise for those of us who hold the faith and persevere through the treachery that life can sometimes throw our way.  I think that's why we have Christmas at this time of the year - to reward ourselves for having survived another year - having made it through the ups and downs - however high the ups were and however low the downs were - we are still here - we fought with the grim reaper - we adhered to the rules set by the head master and we passed life's tests.

As many of us know - our Christmas celebrations equate to the ancient times Roman Saturnalia revelry.  One of the things that marked these days of celebration was a form of role reversal between slaves and masters.  Slaves got to eat first at the feasting tables and were waited on by their masters.  There was also the custom that slaves could "bad mouth" their masters and be free of any consequences.  Gifts were exchanged at a time when there was no real abundance about - remembering that the northern hemisphere is currently at the winter solstice point and most of the lands are under snow.  All this under the heading of Saturn - as ruler of Capricorn - himself depicting all the characteristics we talked about above.

The concept of role reversal sits well with the return into a forward motion of Uranus.  Uranus is the antithesis of Saturn/Capricorn.  Uranus deliberately breaks rules and has no care for the consequences.  So when Uranus is back from a sojourn in the wilderness (the retrograde phase) he comes out and unleashes his antisocial and upsetting self.  It could very well be him who devised the idea of having slaves waited on by their masters.
Watch and see over the Christmas period how Uranus might upset the best laid plans and arrangements for family gatherings.  It will be him you hear laughing in the background as you try and salvage some sort of civility from the chaos.

Here's one last thought.  Many of us practice the concept of setting new intentions for the lunar month ahead at the time of the new moon.  It's a little like the way we set intentions at the start of the new year - a practice that is supported by Saturn who rules this time of the year.  With this new moon at 00° Capricorn - so a new moon in a new sign - ruled by the planet that has us makings new year resolutions.  It might be fruitful join in with the normal new moon rituals that will be happening over the next day or so and set your new year intentions at the same time.  The energies are certainly supportive to that idea at that moment.

It only remains now for me to wish you and your loved ones many blessings over the coming festive days and to thank you for supporting Aquamoon in 2014.
I certainly hope you all keep safe this holiday time.  See you again in 2015.

Art by http://chibionpu.deviantart.com/

 

Gemini Full Moon - 6 December at 11:27pm (AEDT) - 14° Gemini 17'



Back at the start of this particular lunar cycle, the energy equated to a sense of freedom - a need to party - a desire to get out and enjoy, explore, jump on your bike or into your car and head out bush or beach or wherever it suited your fancy.  The suggestion was also around the idea that Sagittarius sits between two of the heavier of the energies of the zodiac - Scorpio and Capricorn - meaning this is a window of opportunity to kick your heels up while you can.

Following straight on from that sense of partying, freedom, exploration is the full moon in the social loving Gemini.  This mercurial ruled sign loves nothing more than to be where the action is  - for it is there that he will learn the most recent news, hear the latest gossip, find out about the newest version of social network media available - for these things are the most important to the information hungry Gemini.  What we love about our Gemini friends is their wealth of trivia knowledge and no better place to hear what's really happening on planet earth than from a Geminian friend at a party.

Gemini is more frenetic than Sagittarius - at the start of the lunar moonth we were just happy to have the "get out of jail free" card but now that we have tasted freedom we want more - and more - and more - and more.  All this energy will no doubt coincide with the pre-Christmas parties or work break up functions that will be happening over the next few weeks.  This heightened sense of fun and frivolity will peak on 8 December - two days after the full moon.  On that day we have Mercury - full moon ruler - sitting at what is referred to in astrology as his superior conjunction - sun conjunct mercury.  If ever we were going to exhibit Gemini qualities of inquisitiveness, a sense of nervous energy, can't sit still, can't stay home, want to be out there taking in all the sights and action - it is on that day.

But - and there is always a but - we also know how those work Christmas functions can get out of hand.  Many a good reputation or career has been severely compromised due to a little overindulgence of anything that tastes or feels good at this time of the year.  That tendency - to go overboard - is never more obvious than at the Gemini full moon and as we mentioned two days later.  So to ensure we don't over do it and get ourselves into all sorts of trouble - Jupiter - as ruler of this lunation cycle - has decided to go retrograde just as our fleet footed friend Mercury is about to take over and possibly have us make a disgrace of ourselves.  Currently Jupiter is traveling through ego driven Leo and that is a good thing while we are sorting ourselves out after the past heavy energies of Scorpio BUT just in case all this freedom gets to our heads - Jupiter will withdraw his outwardly sense of over abundance and reign in the possible excess.  Thank you Jupiter!!!

And here is another sobering planetary aspect that will occur while we are out celebrating the upcoming end of the year - the sixth hit of the seven Pluto Uranus squares happens on 15 December.  This aspect - which will define this particular part of the century - is also just reminding us that its energies are still around.  Those energies are to do with we - the people - revolutionising old, staid, overbearing, mostly male dominated bastions of our society.  The latest evidence of this aspect at play is the little trust the general public have in the government or the cronies who are pulling the strings in the background.  Self vested interests are under Pluto's scrutineering eye.  Their days are numbered.  That's on the world stage.  On the personal level - this aspect will call to mind those areas of our life that are also still operating under the old, staid, overbearing, mostly male dominated areas of our own personal life.  The freedom we talked about earlier is also on offer - and for a much longer period of time than just one lunar cycle - with Uranus.  We are being asked to overcome the fears that have been instilled in us over the last two hundred years mostly in relation to "no work no money".  If we buy into that belief we give the business moguls much power over us.  One of the signs that this earth changing aspect is doing its job is when people take back the power and make a living doing what they love - not what they have to in order to live.  It's a huge challenge and not one that is going to happen overnight - hence the length of this aspect pattern.

Artwork by MariaLucia Ce.

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Sagittarius New Moon - 22 November - 11:32pm (AEDT)  Sun and Moon at 00° Sagittarius 07'

Sitting between two of the heaviest signs in the zodiac - Scorpio and Capricorn - Sagittarius is like a chance to escape and have fun - it's like lunchtime at school between classes we get to go out and play - it's like a get out of jail free card - it's like get on your bike and get out of here.  In the last few days we have had the moon travel through Scorpio and in the last few weeks we have had the sun and Venus traverse the same terrain.  Still there are Mercury and Saturn - but not for long.  Mercury will move on into Sagittarius on 28 November.  Saturn won't be leaving until December - just before Christmas - but the end of this long two year transit is finally in sight.   If life has been feeling heavy, deep, dramatic even traumatic over the last few weeks than know we are just about of the woods.

Sagittarius is depicted in imagery by the centaur - half man half horse - about to send off an arrow into the heavens.  This is permission for us all to shoot for the stars - to aim high - to look up and out  - not down and in as Scorpio has insisted we do over the last few weeks and more.  We have been given the freedom card so get out there and enjoy it   Sagittarius by nature is the funster, the joker, the larrikin - in other words someone who doesn't take life too seriously at all.  One of Sagittarius's phases is straight from the Aussie slang book:  "She'll be right mate!!!"  Simply put Sagittarius cannot abide anything of a serious nature - there's no getting deep and meaningful here - unless it's something Sagittarius has chosen to be involved with. 

I love that we get to have a new moon in this party animal sign just as we are revving up for Christmas.  Around now - and certainly when we turn the calendar page and find its December - we start to take on the attitude that the year is about to come to a close.  We start to wind down, at work we start assessing whether any projects can wait until after the holiday break.  The shops have their Christmas decorations up, the tourist destinations are preparing for the holiday peak season,  Christmas break up parties are being organised, children write their letters to Santa (who by the way is a Sagittarian character) and before long we will be choosing our Christmas tree and decorating our homes - overall the atmosphere and energy changes to one of anticipatory joy and merriment.

Here's another thing about Sagittarius energy - its big !!!  Its ruler is Jupiter - the biggest of the planets in our solar system.  Jupiter acts as a magnifying glass - everything it comes into contact with is expanded - sometimes to the point of extortion - but nevertheless when Jupiter rules we tend to get double of whatever we are having.  Sitting right beside this sun moon conjunction is Venus - the planet of joy and happiness - so here is a double helping of joy.  Venus is also the planet of love (how many of us have fallen in love during the Christmas break) but lets think of love from the Sagittarius perspective - lets remember the archer and from that understand that love here is a love that reaches far beyond the physical dimensions of our personal space. 

Sitting in square aspect to the new moon is Neptune who has just recently come out of a five month retrograde phase.  Here's another planet that just got its freedom card - its get out of jail free card.  The retrograde motion of any planet is a time for reflection, for an inner review process.  Again that's now complete and Neptune is free to join the party.  Now Neptune and Jupiter have this interesting relationship going on.  They are both rulers of Pisces, they both tend to distort whatever they touch - Jupiter by expansion, Neptune by deception - and now they both have a say in this new moon.  Here's the clause in the new moon contract - the one most of us don't read until its too late.  Be aware that we may be deceived by the look and feel of this magnanimous time.  It's so easy to get caught up in the energies that will proliferate over the next few weeks and so easy to drop our load and kick up our heels that may loose sight of our normal everyday obligations.  Sitting there right around the corner is Capricorn who is best epitomised by the Dickens character of Scrooge.  Never mind we will deal with him in the next lunar cycle.

Artist: unknown.
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Taurus Full Moon - 14° Taurus 26'  - Friday 7 November - 9:23am (AEDT)

I came across the quote: "Change is a process, not an event" earlier today - in fact another astrologer had used it in her newsletter and I thought how apt for the Taurus full moon.  The quote is attributed to James O Procashka - a  Professor of Psychology and director of the Cancer Prevention Research Center at the University of Rhode Island.

The last few weeks have certainly presented us with plenty of events which could lead to change.  The Lunar eclipse of 8 October - has its sights on anyone with planets, angles or chart points of 14, 15, 16 degrees of Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn.  The solar eclipse of 24 October at 00° Scorpio highlights that degree and the degrees on either side of it - plus the same degrees in the signs of Taurus, Leo and Aquarius.  Again if you have planets, angles or chart points on these degrees there is a good chance you are currently sensing some sort of change happening.  It could be manifesting in the physical world but more likely in the inner world.  The eclipses were rather recent events promising change.  The ongoing Pluto Uranus square which began back on 24 June 2012 and which will not finish until 17 May 2015 is an example of a long term event - well actually seven events of the same exact square - that will require some sort of change both on a personal and global level.

Currently we are moving through a Scorpio lunar cycle. Scorpio itself is known for its dramatic - and sometimes traumatic - changing events. As it is this lunar moonth contains the festival of Halloween and the Festival of the Dead.  Halloween celebrates the concept that at this time of the year it is believed that the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest.  And yes there is scientific explanation for this theory which I will leave you to investigate.  The Festival of the Dead or Day of the Dead is an event that celebrates the lives of the Ancestors and recently departed.  Maybe not celebrated as widely in Australia but certainly on the festival calendar in many countries around the world.  What I'm getting at here is that the time of the year ruled by Scorpio is one where we are often confronted by the realities of life - one of the greatest realities being death.  Another area of life that comes under the Scorpio heading is rebirth or transformation - neither of which can be fully realised without allowing time to process the effects of life changing events.

Now that the moon is full - we too are full with memories of past or recent life changing events.  Now we need to process - we need to sit and chew the cud so to speak and there can be no better sign to start that process than Taurus.  Just consider its symbology - the bull sitting in a field and yes chewing its cud.  "Change is a process, not an event" - let the process begin.  Take some time out in the next two weeks to consider what has arisen for you these last few weeks or even months.  Take yourself away from the cause of these events - work, family, relationships, money issues and allow Mother Nature to support you and heal you.  Yes Mother Nature is mostly associated with Taurus - green fields, rolling waves, tall trees, long winding paths through the woods - they can all help us connect to the source of our being.  Taurus is very tactile - if nature doesn't do it for you then book in for a massage or a facial - if that's not your cup of tea then how about a stroll through the local art and or craft gallery.  Allow some sort of soothing and calming place to help you get in touch with your inner self and honour any process that is currently helping you understand the effects of any major change you have encountered this year.  Clear the backlog of hurt, pain, trauma, betrayal or abandonment or even the less dramatic memories of events that have asked you look at life through different eyes.

Taking responsibility for our processing is actually a theme for the next few weeks.  On 11 November we have an exact conjunction of Pluto and Mars.  These two are the traditional and modern rulers of Scorpio.  They meet in the sign of Capricorn - a sign noted for its seriousness, sobriety and somberness.  Life gets rather heavy when Capricorn is highlighted.  Now the ruler of Capricorn is Saturn and it just so happens that Saturn is currently sitting in Scorpio.  It all sounds rather incestuous - doesn't it?  What's happening here is that the rulers of Capricorn and Scorpio are currently residing in each others signs and yes that means we have a special two way liaison between these two signs.  Just as Mars will meet up with Pluto - so will Venus and the Sun meet up with Saturn.  The short version of what all this means is that we will no doubt all be finding ourselves in situations that require a mature and wise approach to whatever presents.  This will not be a time for fun (Venus) or for wanting to be first in line (sun) - this will be a time to consider the ramifications of past frivolities and grabs for attention.  I'd like to give you something lighter to end this newsletter but unfortunately that's not the story for now.  Come back next fortnight when we have a complete change of energies.

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Scorpio New Moon & Partial Solar Eclipse - 24 October - 8:56am (AEDT)



Firstly the facts:

  • the partial solar eclipse will be seen in the upper reaches of the northern hemisphere - the far eastern areas of Russia - across to Canada and dipping down into northern states of the USA.
  • the new moon falls on 00° Scorpio 24'

Now for the interpretation:

I would like to pass on something I read in Eric Francis' newsletter just recently.  Just hours - as in 10pm on 23 October - before this new moon the three key players of this new moon - sun, moon, Venus - are all in Libra.  A few hours later and we have all three in Scorpio.  As Eric says "this is a proving moment".  To have three key inner planets all change sign in such a short space of time will certainly impact the energies and vibrations surrounding the planet and all living things on the planet.  Those of us sensitive to such changes will no doubt pick up on the movement of energy from a desire to seek balance and harmony in all situations that are currently challenging you (Libra) to one where you will have had enough with those people situations or events that are now not responding to love care and concern (Scorpio).  Its like parents saying to the little ones: "well if you don't want to learn the easy way - you will have to learn it the hard way".  There is a good level of passive aggressive about Scorpio - under handed, secretive, plotting, just waiting for the right moment to make a move.  If someone or something has been challenging you to your limit there is a good chance this someone or something will feel the force of your - now - impatience.  Scorpio doesn't do nice - the time for nice is over - that time was during our last lunar cycle in Libra.  Now we are donning our bullshit detectors and getting to the heart of the matter.  No more excuses, no more pussy footing around - the time for reckoning has come.

Let's consider the natal chart with its twelve houses.  If we take those twelve houses and correlate them to twelve phases of life then the house that corresponds to the time of life when we become interested in the opposite (or same) sex, when we start relationships and when we make the decision to move in with (marry) that special person - all that activity belongs to the seventh house.  It also just happens that the planet best associated with that house is Venus.  For those of us who have been in love - or who are now in love - consider for a moment the feelings around that state of being.  In the early stages of any relationship we can be totally besotted with the other.  All is peaceful, harmonious, loving - there is devotion and gentleness and care.   As time goes on - and  love proves to stand the test of time - we will come to recognise that living together has its ups and downs.  The ups of life we have just mentioned - the downs look like toilet seats left up, dirty clothes left strewn on the bedroom floor and the niggling over household chores.  At this point in life we enter the eighth house - the house of Scorpio - the house where Pluto rules.  Those niggling comments turn into underhanded remarks turn into nagging turn into full blown arguments.

Relationships have been under the spotlight for some time now.  You may remember at the start of the year we had an extended retrograde period of Mars going through Libra - the Venus ruled sign - the house of courtship, falling in love, choosing our special one and setting up house together.  Of course there are many other life scenarios attached to this part of the zodiac and of course not everyone falls in love and does the setting up house story.  Intimate relationships can also be equated to those who share the same street address as you - something my astro friend Jo Tracey pointed out - it can be your bestest and closest friend and confidante - we are looking at someone with whom you can share your life.  All these relationships were under the pump for eight months while Mars sorted out the sheep from the goats - who was REALLY on your side, who REALLY had your back, who REALLY was prepared to go that extra mile with you.

Now all that relationship type energy (or another way of looking at the LIbra energy is the desire to make life as harmonious and balanced as possible)  is standing at the doorway into the next phase of life - the Scorpio phase.  Now relationships are tested - now its about the nitty gritty of life - bank accounts, my money vs your money vs our money, time with friends vs time together, assigning household chores, committing to date nights, learning how to right life after serious relationship threatening arguments.  Likewise all the energies we put into making life as pleasant as possible is starting to wear us out.

Two weeks ago we had the total lunar eclipse across the Aries/Libra axis.  This opposition talks primarily to relationships - the relationship I have with myself - the relationship I have with my significant other or others with whom I share my life.  Lunar eclipses churn the inner core of our being.  Lunar eclipses are about how we FEEL about the area of life being highlighted by the moon's darkness. 

Solar eclipses are more of the outer manifestation.  So what was churned during the lunar eclipse - the changes that may have happened within - subconsciously even - will now start producing results in the outer three dimensional world.  Now here are two absolute rider with regards to eclipses - not everyone feels or manifests the effects of the eclipses and the effects eclipses can surface for months after the actual occurrence.  What you need to take note of is the degrees of the eclipses - the lunar eclipse was at 15° of Libra - the solar eclipse will be at 00° of Scorpio.  If you have planets, chart angles or any significant placement at 14/15/16 degrees of Libra, Capricorn, Aries or Cancer - or if you have planets, chart angles or any significant placements at 29° Libra, 00/01 degrees of Scorpio, Aquarius, Taurus or Leo than the chances are you will bring about changes in your life any time from now til around April next year.

It may all sound rather heavy and ominous and there is no denying that life could very well look that way come the next few weeks.  But there is an upside to Scorpio and Pluto.  If we can stand the "heat in the kitchen" then there is a good chance that when the dust settles we will find ourselves in a new space, a new energy and be looking at life with new eyes.  The keys words to Scorpio are death, transformation and rebirth.  What needs to die in your life right now - where are you under the pump, where are you giving more than you should, where are you the lifter as Joe Hockey would say, where are you trying to maintain the status quo, holding back the dam - that situation will most likely be what "dies".  Transformation will come when we work through the fall out of the dam bursting.  Rebirth will happen when we rework our life without the onus of propping up people situations or events that have used up our desire for peace and harmony and left us with the feeling of being "bled dry".

At the time of this new moon Mercury is still retrograde but only for another approximate twenty four hours.  The retrograde Mercury is in Libra.  He is doing any last minute cleaning up around any ideas we might have of still focusing on people events or situations that no longer deserve our attention.  Mercury will join the sun, moon and Venus in Scorpio later this month at which time we will be busy redefining our lives.

And here's one last thing - Saturn - the planet that demands we take responsibility, do the hard work, go the extra mile - has been in Scorpio for just over two years now.  Saturn is now sitting in the last degrees of Scorpio - a time when we will certainly be held to account for the hard work we have done (or haven't done)  in transforming some part of our life (the house Saturn has been traveling through these last two years will indicate what area of life has needed an upgrade).  A lunar and solar eclipse, a Mercury retrograde which started at 2° Scorpio, a new lunar cycle starting in Scorpio and a Saturn who is about to distribute the Scorpio exam papers makes for a very Scorpionic time ahead.

 

Aries Full Moon & Total Lunar Eclipse - 8 October - 9:51pm (AEDT)

 

Full moons are times of illumination - just as the moon shines brightly in all her fullness in the dark night sky - so too in our "darkness" of not knowing do we find awareness, insight, inspiration and illumination.  This is the true gift of the full moon - enlightenment in the area of life highlighted by the zodiacal sign the moon is currently moving through - in this case, Aries.  We are currently in a Libra ruled lunar cycle.  As suggested in the last planetary posting there is a real sense of wanting and desiring peace and harmony in our most intimate and special relationships.  That desire sets the tone for the lunar moonth ahead.  Come the full moon we have the opportunity to be endowed with inspiration, insights into how we might find that peace, balance and harmony.  In Aries we have the energy of "me/ myself/ I".  All relationship counselors will tell you that for a relationship to succeed - to have that peace, harmony and balance we desire in relationships - we must first have a healthy sense of self.  Herein lies the illumination of this full moon.  Yes we already knew that - self love first, then other love -  what each Libra lunar cycle offers is the chance to peel back the layers from knowing this intellectually to knowing this within our heart - taking it to heart - making it our own story.

This particular Aries full moon is supported with plenty of added inspiration to help us balance our most fundamental relationships.  Firstly we have a total lunar eclipse.  I have always enjoyed the analogy of eclipses being like a full reboot of our internal computer.  I'd like to add to that idea.  Considering we are also in the throes of a mercury retrograde where computers seem to be the main target of disruption - in today's technological climate the main source of disruption is malware, spyware, whatever "ware" - let's think of the eclipse as a total clean out of all "wares" from our internal computer.  As we watch the moon slowly disappearing from sight think of our inner computer slowly shutting down under the weight of all those gremlins.  As the moon slowly reappears think of our inner computer coming back into life renewed and refreshed and ready to take on new files, new information at a greater speed.

Now while the eclipse is in play lets add the influence of the other players.  Uranus - planet of upheaval, chaos, revolution leading to renewal - is sitting right beside our full moon - meaning that the reboot might have a rather tumultuous or unsettling feel about it.  When you turn on your inner computer again (after the total lunar eclipse) it might feel like some relationship files are missing - you might not be relating to some people in the same way, you may not see someone in the same light, you may want to be gentler, more compassionate with someone, you may find you need to sever ties with others.  The planet of change has rewritten some files, thrown out some and replaced others.

Also in the play is Pluto (Pluto and Uranus are inseparable at the moment).  With Pluto comes death, transformation and rebirth.  Again we are thinking important relationships here.  Following on from Uranus' rewrite of some relationship files, we might find that we need to "die" to some long held ideas about someone special.  We may need to rewrite the story around a lover, special friend, close confidante.  The rebirth is as important as the "death" - so what dies in a relationship will be replaced with reborn insights and understandings. 

On top of all that - the nodes of the moon are also involved in this full moon/eclipse story - as they must for an eclipse to occur.  The south node of the moon, which represents our habitual relating patterns is sitting in the mix with the full moon and Uranus.  So how we tended "to do" relationships - our subconscious programming around how we put ourselves out there, how we relate, how much we reveal, how much we hold back - all those elements involved in relationships that we have previously played out purely out of (subconscious) habit might well be thrown into the mix for upheaval, change, transformation and rebirth.  The north node of the moon is looking more like our rebooted, gremlin free computer - there could be some files missing, some files rewritten.  In order to continue on with some relationships you will need to form new habitual patterns around relating.  That may feel strange or uncomfortable to begin with but eventually - like all change - it becomes second nature before too long.

Lastly the good news - Venus - ruling planet of this current lunar cycle - is sitting right next to the sun.  This augurs for most beneficial, happy and harmonious outcome.

Now for some of you the whole relationship theme may not hitting the mark.  With any new or full moon event, and especially when those events are accompanied by other significant heavenly influences, you need to look to your natal chart to see where the events are taking place.  Tonight's eclipse may be highlighting your seventh house in which case the relationship theme with significant others will be strong.  But if the eclipse is falling in your fourth house than the relationship theme will be highlighting your family life, your parents, your grandparents.  If the eclipse is highlighting your eleventh house then the relationship theme is highlighting your friendships, the sixth house will highlight your relationships with workmates.  Each house holds a different relationship theme.  For a personal understanding of tonight's eclipse head over to planetary posting plus.

For those wanting to witness the lunar eclipse along the eastern seaboard of Australia - the whole show starts around 8:15pm after the moon has risen above the horizon.  The best viewing times are from 9:27pm through to the total eclipse around 9:55pm and then til 10:22pm when the full effects of the eclipse start to fade.

Art by http://ochrejelly.deviantart.com/

 

Libra New Moon - Wednesday 24 September - 4:13pm (AEST)

For several reasons this is a most auspicious new moon.  New moons that fall on the cardinal points of the zodiac are in their own rights significant.  The cardinal points represent the turning points of the seasons.  The September turning point in the southern hemisphere is the Spring Equinox - equal day and equal night.  This is celebrated the day before this new moon on Tuesday 23 September and it officially marks the beginning of spring.  Of course in the northern hemisphere it is the Autumn Equinox - so what is happening globally is in (almost) all places on the planets we are experiencing this balance of day and night hours.  Balance is a key Libra word.  Libra doesn't sit at either end of the see-saw - it sits in the middle holding the ends in alignment.  A tricky thing to do but something that Libra types do well.

The fact that the new moon falls so soon after the spring equinox gives this new moon that extra punch.  For those of us living in the southern most states of Australia - we have had the most superb start to Spring.  The weather has been particularly kind with warm sunny days and cloudless blue skies.  The contrast with the colder than usual winter is quite noticeable.  A change in seasons is like a new moon - a change in energies.  Many of us practice new moon rituals.  We set our intentions for the upcoming new lunar cycle.  To be engaging with such ritual right on top of the change in seasons is significant from the perspective that we now have two lots of changing energies - Libra New Moon and Spring Equinox.

But wait there's more.  This new moon is accompanied by Pluto's stationary direct position - meaning Pluto has been moving in a retrograde (backwards) direction since 14 April - meaning the energies associated with Pluto (needing to face our deepest fears) has been an internal process since 14 April.  Now that Pluto has come to a standstill - having sat at exactly 11° of Capricorn from 16 - 29 September - the fears that have been uncovered - the fears we have been working on over the last few months internally will now be exposed to the external world.  If we were able to face those fears and work with them we should be pleasantly surprised to see that they no longer hold the same weight.  If we were unable to deal with the fears presented to us over the last few months then we could find ourselves in some tricky situations over the next few months while Pluto remains moving in a forward motion.  So adding to the idea that we are sitting with change - a new lunar cycle and a change of season - here is the third change - a change that will come from deep within - a confidence in having wrestled with fear.

And still there is more - this new lunar cycle also marks a close connection between Uranus and the south node of the moon - both in Aries.  All astrologers have been talking about Uranus in Aries since way back in early 2012.  Together with its square to Pluto - its been the crux of the world changes - with more to come.  But for us personally there are also changes.  The idea that Uranus (planet of change, disruption, revolution) is sitting beside the south node of the moon (our past, soul memories, ingrained habits) is absolutely calling for a radical change of heart.  Uranus is also a planet of breakthroughs - breakthroughs come when we breakout of past habits.  When we can get our heads around the idea that there may be a very different way of looking at life or accepting a different way of thinking - breakthroughs occur.  So breaking out of the past and looking for the breakthroughs are another change energy we will be working with over the coming few weeks.

And just as an aside - now that Pluto is moving forward again - we will come to the final two of the seven hits of the Pluto/Uranus square.  The sixth hit of this aspect formation will be 15 December.  I have said previously in these postings that I am not a mundane (geopolitical) astrologer - but I don't believe you need to be to see that the world is changing its attitude to banks, governments and large corporations.  The distrust of these conglomerates is almost palpable.   If you have ever wondered how this earth changing aspect is affecting us on planet earth - look no further than the climate change rallies held around the globe last Sunday - 21 September.

So back to our Libra new moon.  As mentioned back at the start of this posting - Libra is about balance.  It is also about peace, fair play, justice.  It's ruler, Venus, who is currently also residing in Libra - is adding the love factor into the equation.  So what we have here is the desire for peaceful harmonious loving relationships.  With all the background (spiritual) changes occurring both on the planet and on a personal level - the realisation is coming forth that we can't have these much desired peaceful harmonious relationships until we have such a thing with ourselves.  To love ourselves unconditionally is a concept many of us work on daily.  Some of us work on it outside a relationship - some within - and so many of us now have the understanding that the peace and harmony we sought for so long outside of ourselves is in fact within us.  Libra and its ruler Venus are in charge of the heart centre where we assign the concept of love.  The heart centre connects us to all love - to all beings - to the universe/god/all that is - it is this heart centre that Pluto has been purging these last few months - it is this heart centre that Uranus is wanting to free from past restraints - it is this heart centre that is under the spotlight this new lunar cycle.

Art by http://fabera.deviantart.com/

 

Pisces Full Moon - 9 September - 11:38am (AEST)

As we are in a Virgo lunar cycle, let's bring some practicality into this posting.  Virgo is an earth sign meaning it is concerned with facts - it works with the senses of touch sight taste smell hearing - it is efficient, sensible, sober and business like.  Earth signs don't like messing around - there is work to be done - let's get on with it.  As we are now in an earth sign lunar cycle these are predominately the energies of this cycle - let's get real - let's get moving - let's get the job done.  So at the time of the new moon - 26 August - this was what the earth was tuning into (and hopefully you were too!!). 

At the new moon the sky is dark - sun and moon move together through the heavens - the moonlight is not available to light the night skies.  But as the lunar cycle continues and the moon separates out from the sun gradually the moonlight returns.  At the new moon we are Aries like - full of enthusiasm and excitement for the journey ahead.  We are off on a new adventure.  With each stage of the moon's separation out from the sun though - we are faced with challenges.  The first quarter moon is known as the "crisis of action" moon - it is the first time we face blockages on our path.  At the full moon - when moon and sun are as far apart as they can get - we are faced with process of integration.  This integration comes from a recognition of what energies we left behind as we started this particular lunar cycle. 

Again at the start of this cycle we blazed a trail into the world of practicality, of sensibility, of purpose, of focus on a useful outcome.  What we left behind was our emotional involvement in this journey.  When we are focused on a project or a mission we have no time to deal with emotional responses.  Ever tried cutting out a dress design with tears running down your face!!!  Earth signs are loners - they have something to achieve and they are off making that happen.  Their opposite - or full moon signs - are the water signs where we are caught up with the feeling states.  Water signs don't do life alone - they are focused on relationships - a relationship with themselves as much as with others.  So now that the Virgo energy has reached it's half way mark - a time of integration - it realises it can't finish the journey without integrating the fullness of the energy it is wanting to manifest.  And in the case of Virgo that energy belongs to Pisces.

The lessons that Pisces brings Virgo is to slow down, smell the roses, take some time out, daydream a little, don't sweat the small stuff.  Pisces asks Virgo to understand that it is not in control of the journey - there are forces far greater then it can comprehend in charge of the final outcome.  The thing is earth signs - the loners - tend to have their heads down focused on the matter at hand.  They don't tend to look up and around and take in their environment.  That is the nature of the water signs.

This particular full moon is not only about the integration of the Pisces energy into the Virgo journey but it also has the added need to assimilate Chiron into the picture - for the "wounded healer" is sitting right beside the moon.  To slow down and take time out from our focused responsible lives might raise a number of issues for us.  Guilt for one - I don't have the right to rest and relax - shame for another - how can I sit here doing nothing when everyone around me is busy.  One of the things that the Virgo/Pisces axis highlights is health.  We can continue to push on only for as long as our bodies respond to the pressure.  When the body has reached its stress capacity it will start to break down and we will find ourselves at the other end of the work spectrum - doing nothing as we lie in our sick bed.

The Pisces call to surrender is even stronger again when we see that the ruler of this full moon - Neptune - is also in Pisces.  No escaping the message here.  It is imperative that we integrate a sense of otherness in our mainly material focus world.  Balance is another key word at the time of the full moon.  While the moon continues its stay in the sign of the fishes - take some time out to relax, to meditate, to make a relationship to that which is unseen, unheard, can't be touched or tasted with the human body but which belongs to a energy far greater than we can every manufacture.

Artist Toshio Ebine:  http://ebineyland.deviantart.com/

 

Virgo New Moon - 26 August - 00:12am (AEST)

How very accommodating of Virgo to start a new lunar cycle just as the weather has turned - well here in the southern states of Australia at least.  In the last week or so the scales have tipped in favour of warmer and sunnier days and many of us are waking from a long winter's sleep as it were.  Warmer days allows us to think of the outdoors without the accompanying necessities of huge heavy coats, mittens and beanies.  It also allows us to throw open the doors and windows and allow some fresh clean air to flow through and  infiltrate the stale heated atmosphere that comes as a result of months with a fire burning in the background.  Many of us get the urge to "spring clean" - give the rooms of the home a thorough once over to completely dispel the lethargy of the long winter months.

This is why the Virgo new moon has arrived right on time - to assist those of us with the cleaning bug.  Virgo - among other things - is the sign of cleanliness.  In fact its the sign that rules elbow grease, spit and polish, vim and vigour.  And once everything in the house has been scrubbed clean - it turns its attention to the outdoors.  Again with the sun making an appearance for longer than ten minutes on any given day - the garden has responded accordingly.  Winter planted seeds and shrubs are showing signs of life.  We can go back into the garden and expect rewards for our hard work.

Virgo is a practical sign - so it follows that what is planted out now will have some useful purpose in life.  The vege patch will no doubt get the first burst of our energy.  Seedlings will be going into the ground - early summer crops - and of course - herbs.  These will be the staple of the Virgo garden, for this sign also rules plant medicine - indeed the healing women of the past fall under this sign's protection.  And just as well for the onset of spring brings with it a swath of colds, flu & viruses that have us reaching for the medicine chest.  No doubt those healing women would be proud of us so called modern folk when they see that nowadays our medicine cupboards could just as well have echinacea, valerian, chamomile, olive leaf and other various herbs and plant remedies inspired from their time.

Virgo is a hard working sign.  It belongs to the idea that a woman's work is never done (yes it is a feminine sign and no I am not being sexist here).  By woman's work I mean the practical side of life.  The cooking of meals, the washing of clothes, the shopping for food and the scrubbing of floors - it doesn't matter who does these chores - what matters is that they are never ending and for this reason become the concern of the Virgo.

This then is the energy of this new lunar cycle - dealing with the practical matters of life and not in any slip slop manner - but with precise and determined action.  The grandstanding Leo has had his time in the spotlight - we are moving onto the realities of life.  We are now needing to recognise that if we want our time in the limelight we need to work hard, work long and work over the same piece of instruction over and over again.  Boring, repetitious, mind numbing - maybe for many of us but not for the Virgo who strives for perfection - who will only be satisfied when he/she has conquered that seemingly difficult or impossible chore or project.

Virgo has received its own fair amount of bad press over the years.  They can be known as nit pickers, pedantic, hairsplitting, finicky - the list can go on.  They don't tend to know when to stop or recognise when a subject has been flogged for long enough.  Thank goodness then that Neptune takes up residence opposite this new moon this particular lunar cycle.  This means we get to relax a little, hang loose, enjoy the warmer weather, pack a picnic basket and head for the park.  Otherwise it could well be all work and no play making for some rather dull people.

The only planetary aspect that could possibly upset this industrious lunar cycle is a precise combination of Mars and Saturn in Scorpio.  This could be described as "the hitting your head against a brick wall" energy combination.  It's not a particularly good blending of energies, especially when we have Virgo in charge.  Virgo doesn't take too kindly to people or situations that distract from its intense focus in dealing with the matter at hand.  Should indeed something happen to divert Virgo's attention then this pairing could see it easily loose its cool.  It might be a good piece of advice to watch the blood pressure over the next week or so - anger will never be far from the surface - the boxing gloves might be pulled on at the least expected moment.

Artwork by Susan Seddon Boulet.

 

Aquarius Full Moon - 11 August - 4:09am (AEST)

 

At the half way mark through the Leo lunar cycle we meet the Aquarius full moon.  And just like we had Mick Jagger personify the energy of the new moon - so too do we have a personality who I believe epitomises the Aquarius energy - this being Naomi Klein.
Just in case you don't know Naomi Klein - here is a brief introduction from Wikipedia:
"Naomi Klein is a Canadian author and social activist known for her political analyses and criticism of corporate globalization.[1] She is best known for No Logo, a book that went on to become an international bestseller, and The Shock Doctrine, a critical analysis of the history of neoliberal economics".
It was bought to my attention this morning that Naomi is about to release a new book:  "This changes everything" which suggest that climate change efforts are futile unless there is ecopolitical change.  Her quote:
"The case I want to make to you is that climate change—when its full economic and moral implications are understood—is the most powerful weapon progressives have ever had in the fight for equality and social justice.
But first, we have to stop running away from the climate crisis, stop leaving it to the environmentalist, and look at it. Let ourselves absorb the fact that the industrial revolution that led to our society’s prosperity is now destabilizing the natural systems on which all of life depends".

The moon - now at its peak - begins to wane after Monday.  In the early phases of the Leo lunar cycle Mick Jagger was held up as one who gave us the notion that it was OK to express ourselves freely.  Self creation, self expression, passion, fun was on the agenda.  Now that the moon begins her waning phases the focus switches to others.  We still have the stage, we still have spotlight, we still have fame and notoriety but now those tools need to be used for the betterment of all.  This is the charge of Aquarius.  Naomi Klein is a celebrity in her own right.  She too takes to the stage, has the spotlight shone on her performances but whereas Mick's stage show was centred on having a good time, Naomi's message is about community and tribal concerns - the welfare of our brothers and sisters in every country in the world. 

The Aquarian message is often rebuffed by the general community and Aquarian types are well used to being outsiders,  Their messages are not usually about fun, passion and a good time - they are more about equality and a fair go for all.  Aquarians will say - "why should the children of the middle classes be entitled to a night out with the Rolling Stones when there are so many starving".  Aquarians know how to put on a performance - a little different from Mick Jagger's performance but nevertheless a show stopper.  Their performances are the protest marches, throwing eggs at the Prime Minister, conducting union rallies and writing books that get the rest of thinking about a new kind of truth.  Aquarian types are innovative, futurists, activists - the fun is in ensuring we are all having fun - not just the elite few.

Now if all that sounds a bit too sombre for you - be aware that the king of sobriety - Saturn -sits in square aspect to this full moon - meaning we will be called to give account of ourselves at some stage over the next two weeks.  If you have been out partying every night (in other words only concerned with your own fun) rather than ensuring some of the less fortunate in your neck of the woods have also been invited to have fun - be assured Saturn will hold you to account.  And if that sounds heavy handed or like a bucket of cold water has just been thrown over the party then you are simply recognising Saturn's influence on this full moon.
Just a Naomi Klein will no doubt point out in her new book - we have work to do, we have a responsibility to Mother Earth, to humankind - not only those that inhabit the planet right now but to those who are not yet born. 

In the end the Leo lunar cycle message is not just one of fun, passion, self expression nor is it all about responsibility to others - it is blending the two energies.  Have the parties, sing and dance and have fun and then spread the feel good factor around.

 

Leo New Moon - 27 July - 8:42am (AEST)



Whenever the concept of Leo is bought to mind - I can't help but think Mick Jagger of Rolling Stones fame.  The man simply exudes Leonine qualities.  In fact his birthday is 26 July being the day before this new moon.  And like this Leo new moon  - which sees a close conjunction of sun, moon and Jupiter - so does Mick Jagger have a Leo sun sitting right along side his Jupiter.  So if we want to know what this new moon - and indeed this new lunar cycle - should look like - go no further than the man himself !! 

Back in the mid 1960's much could be said about your personality just by whether you followed the Rolling Stones or the Beatles.  At that time the Fab Four were pretty much still down the safe end of musical spectrum.  Their music may have grated on the ears of most parents of the time - but never as much as the loud, brash, pompous Mick Jagger.  In the same year that the Beatles released Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - Mick and the boys were pumping out albums such as "Their Satanic Majesties Request".  Likewise on stage - the Beatles were still fairly formal in dress and manner while Mick was strutting his stuff and pouting his lips. 

What we have here is passion, raw passion.  We have creativity, we have self expression, we have pride, we have "devil may care" attitude - which is exactly what this new moon cycle is calling us out on.  In our last lunar cycle - ruled by Cancer and the moon - we were held in the arms of the mother.  We were nurtured, supported, loved and sustained.  Now that the wheel has turned one archetype further on - we free ourselves from our mother's apron strings and begin a journey of self discovery.  What am I good at, what gives me pleasure, what makes my heart sing, what turns me on and in true Leo style what ensures that I am noticed, that I receive adulation, applause and gratitude.  Leo likes to be on show - in fact Leo is the show.  Leo will give generously but he will also expect much in return.  The one sure way to "piss off" a Leo is to "rain on his parade".

Astrologer Ed Tamplin was writing of the recent move by Jupiter into the sign of Leo when he stated:  "if you do what you love then your life will be an ongoing love affair".  I'd like to offer that quote as focus for this lunar cycle.  Being in constant contact with your passion, your creativity, your love of self - giving yourself permission to shine as only the sun can (the sun being the ruling planet of Leo) is not only good for your soul, your heart and your wellbeing - it also puts a smile on the faces of those you meet.

Just to keep you up to date with what the other planets doing.  The last planetary postings newsletter mentioned the movement of Jupiter into Leo which happened on 16 July.  (This is the subject of the most recent planetary postings post newsletter).  It was also mentioned that Mars would move on into Scorpio.  This will happen the day before the new moon - 26 July - and it will be the subject for the next planetary posting plus newsletter. 

Besides these two planets moving into new signs - we have just recently had two planets change direction.  Saturn turned around and is now heading in a direct forward motion as of 20 July and Uranus begun a 5 month retrograde phase on 22 July.  So together with Jupiter and Mars - four planets have changed focus in a matter of ten days.  The to-ing and fro-ing in the heavens has been reflective in some people's dispositions lately.  Some are feeling scattered, some are feeling restless, some are feeling lethargic and some have gone underground.  Hopefully by the time we turn the calendar page to August those of you who are keenly attuned to planetary movements will be feeling back in charge.

 

Capricorn Full Moon - 12 July - 9:34pm (AEST)



We have been nurtured and mothered by the Cancer new moon now for almost two weeks.  In that time - while we were feeling safe and secure within the mother's arms - we were able to begin sorting through the intensity of the last few months.  Many of these intense issues were the result of the cardinal grand cross of April 23-28.  Many of us are - and have been - working on some major life changes.  Some are seeing the fruits of their labours - some are still needing to do further work.  Wherever you are at on your life's journey - know you are loved and supported at this time. 

This Capricorn full moon chart is a stark reminder of the ferocity of the first few months of 2014.  The chart replays the cardinal grand cross of late April.  In that historical chart we saw Pluto, Uranus, Jupiter and Mars all at 13° of the cardinal signs of the zodiac - that being Capricorn, Aries, Cancer and Libra respectively.
The cardinal signs are once again forming a grand cross in this full moon chart - we have sun & Jupiter in Cancer - we have Mars and North Node in Libra, we have moon and Pluto in Capricorn and we have Uranus and South node in Aries.  This full moon chart is a reminder only of that life changing time - not another attempt by the universe to upend us all.

So while we will revisit those energies in some form or other - we are also given the opportunity to see how far we have come in adjusting our lives to the changes prompted by the grand cross.  We also get to see how we have accepted those changes - are we still denial over some person, situation or event - do we have our heads in the sand over some issue that just seems just to hard to deal with - or too frightening.

I can't emphasis enough the idea that this Cancer lunar moonth is currently nurturing, supporting, loving and sustaining us to face situations that could ultimately mean changing our lives forever.  Take the opportunity to work within this safe environment and deal with the changes asked of you as the universal energies are about to move on.  Those issues not faced will go underground and remain in the subconscious until personal transits to the grand cross points hit your natal chart and then you will be faced with them again. 

Shortly after the full moon we have two major changes in the celestial energies.  On July 16 Jupiter moves into Leo.  Jupiter takes around a year to travel through each zodiac sign.  It entered Cancer in late June 2013 - so its time here was just over thirteen months.  It will remain in Leo until mid August 2015 - so again just on thirteen months.  Jupiter in Cancer - and especially as part of the cardinal grand cross - acted as a buffer for what was otherwise quite potent cosmic forces.  Its movement into Leo marks a change from that haven of safety to one of support as we make our way out of the Cancerian cocoon and into the wide world to test our fledgling wings.  Much more on this in Planetary Postings Plus.

The other major change is Mars - also part of the cardinal grand cross of 23 April - who will move on into Scorpio on 26 July.  During the time of the grand cross - Mars was in Libra - an area of the heavens that least suited its style.  Mars was responsible for many of the relationship issues that came to a head in the first six months of this year.  Those of you sharing the same street address with another human(s) - and who are still at that same address with the same human(s) - can congratulate themselves on having survived what would have been one of the most testing times of all from an astrology point of view.  Some of you will no doubt still be negotiating your way through a minefield.

The movement of Mars into Scorpio marks a change of from one of frustration and anger to one of power and being in control for Mars.  In Scorpio Mars is back in rulership - happy to dig through the remnants of any type of relationship that "suffered" during the last few months and bring out for discussion those issues that may almost have destroyed your relationship.  We are back in a universe zone that demands attention be given to all types of ventures that require more than one person to manifest an outcome.  We are looking at cooperation, we are looking at honesty, we are looking at authenticity.  Mars in Scorpio has a pretty good bull shit detector.  If in our relationships with others we have been less than honest, less than real - we will be held to account.

For those who have faced the challenges of the last six months or more and who are continuing to face the changes demanded of them - the next six months will be ones in which you find much support in bringing those changes to fruition.  For those who have not been able to face the demands of the six months for whatever reason - the next six months will continue to feel like life is at odds with your desires for peace.  Both on a collective and personal scale we have two more hits of the Pluto/Uranus square which started off this whole course of transformation back in 2012.  Those hits will occur in December this year and May next year.  After that the world will begin to look like a very different place - again both on a personal and collective level.

Artwork by Susan Seddon Boulet

 

Cancer New Moon - 27 June - 6:09pm (AEST)



In the so called natural birth chart - the one where Aries as the first sign in the zodiac is also placed as the first house - Cancer is placed at the beginning of the fourth house.  This house is at the bottom of the chart - the part which is given over to the dark side of the sky.  Cancer at the bottom of this dark part falls at the midnight point when we break the chart down into hours.  So from a zodiac point of view Cancer rules the darkest point of the chart. 

At the new moon the sky is also at its darkest - sun and moon traveling together don't allow for moonlight to take over from sunlight which is what happens at the full moon.  For us here in the southern hemisphere - we have just celebrated the winter solstice.  We have now passed through the shortest day and longest night time marker.  With so few daylight hours - we tend to live life behind closed doors - a more sedate, quiet, inward focused life.  Which is pretty much how we would describe the energies assigned to the zodiacal sign of the crab. 

Cancer is also about warmth, nurturing, snuggling up - it is also associated with home - the inner home as much as the physical home.  At the time in the seasonal flow of life - when all things come to an almost full stop - due to darkness and cold - we tend to turn to inward.  From this internal perspective we have a chance to be reacquainted with our inner selves.  For the greater part we don't tend to share this part of ourselves - not always because we would rather not but also because there are not always words to describe what comes from this inner place.  These inner conversations are usually for own growth and knowing.

But just because Cancer has been assigned to the lowest and darkest point in the chart - doesn't mean it is the least important.  In fact Hellenistic astrologers have a mythical chart called the Thema Mundi - meaning World Theme - in which Cancer is placed as ruler of the first house. These astrologers hold that the nurturing mothering role of Cancer is far more in keeping with the birth process than the warlike aggression of Aries which is used by nearly all astrologers today.  I don't think too many people would argue with that.

That we all need mothering and nurturing is a no brainer - it doesn't matter how old you are - there are times when you just want someone to be there for you.  The no man is an island idea comes to mind here.  This is really where Cancer comes into its own - being for others, caring and supporting others, looking outside of themselves to ensure all are safe, healthy and happy.  That's the outward expression of course.  If we swap the words "others" for "self" - we understand another equally important role of Cancer - self care - and here the intention is not just physical self care but also emotional and spiritual self care.

Since the start of the year we have every inner planet - Mercury, Venus, Mars - go retrograde.  Retrograde planets take their energies inward and work from the inside out.  They are on a mission to stir the subconscious and bring into consciousness those issues we have neatly buried deep in the psyche.  When the inner planets - the ones most connected to you personally go retrograde then the impact is felt by us directly.  What I am saying here is that the first six months of this year we have been directed by the cosmos to be reflective, meditative, contemplative.  These last six months are now culminating in a Cancer new moon cycle.  This is the time when we can pull together all that we have learned about ourselves since the start of the year and prepare ourselves to go into a more outward external energy for the last half of the year.

Mercury will finish its latest retrograde phase on 1 July and not go retrograde again until 4 October.  Jupiter - which has been in Cancer since this time last year and which had a lengthy retrograde period in the sign of the crab - is preparing to travel into Leo - a outward expressive sign.  Saturn - who has been retrograde in Scorpio since 2 March is also nearing the end of this phase and will go direct on 20 July.  It too will be in an outward expressing sign - Sagittarius - before the end of the year.

All in all this is our last pit stop before completing the all laps of the internal awareness campaign.  This time was given to us to forge a strong relationship with our inner selves - it was an opportunity to become clear about our internal boundaries - it was a time to throw out old worn out ideas of self - especially the ones placed there by others - it was a time to strengthen new visions, new directions, new beliefs about ourselves.  Now that the energies will become more outward in nature - we will be given the chance to christen those new found understandings in the not too far distant future.

Artwork by Susan Seddon Boulet.

 

Sagittarius Full Moon - 13 June - 2:11pm (AEST)



At the full moon we bring to fruition the wishes and intentions we set at the new moon.  Even you if you didn't have a set plan for this lunar cycle - you will still be influenced by the concept of "as above so below".  Back at the time of the Gemini new moon we noted that the ruler - Mercury - had just moved into Cancer and had slowed right down in preparation for another retrograde phase.  We also noted that the sun moon conjunction of the new moon was exactly square (by a matter of minutes) to Neptune - who was also slowing right down (even though he doesn't move too fast at the best of times) and ready to go retrograde.  So two strong indicators that the lunar moonth ahead was one in which we would be doing some inner work.

Now that we have come to the full moon we look for evidence that our inner work is on track - or that it is producing results.  Those results - being those insights we have gained from our inner work over the last two weeks - will now be integrated into our understanding, our personal knowledge, our wisdom bank.  How we do that is guided by the direction of the heavens over the next two weeks.

This full moon sky is ruled by Jupiter - who is its final days in the sign of the crab - Cancer.  Mercury - ruler of the new moon - was also in the sign of the crab at the start of this lunar cycle - so we are definitely being led back to all things Cancer.  This is the sign of the mother, of nurturing, of self care and care of others - this is about home - the physical home as well as our inner home.  Here in Australia being only days away from the winter solstice - its not hard to focus on our physical home - with so few daylight hours we are spending much time indoors.  The same message can be translated to spending time with our inner selves - allowing our inner voice to speak to us.  Its as much about hearing the inner words of encouragement and love as it is listening to our fears and doubts.

Jupiter is in exaltation in Cancer - meaning Jupiter loves being in this part of the heavens - it is its second best home.  Jupiter itself is about expansion, its about BIG, its about widening the horizon and it is also about beliefs and truth.  To me - a Jupiter in Cancer is about expanding our inner home, expanding and developing our home truths, our beliefs, our tenets by which we run life.  Some might need a complete overhaul, some might need a fine tune and some just might need to be watered.  What's important to you - what do you believe in - what truths do you abide by.  Go within and seek the answers - see if they sit well with you - recognise any need for change.

This full moon is in square aspect to Chiron.  Now here's the thing - at the new moon we had sun & moon square Neptune - who went retrograde days later.  Now we have the full moon square Chiron - who will go retrograde days later.  I'm thinking we can't get away from the idea that we are needing to spend some time in quiet meditation, quiet reflection, quiet contemplation getting to know your inner self as well as you know your outer physical self.
With Chiron retrograde (beginning 20 June) there is a good chance we will be put back in touch with past pain, hurt or grief.  The sorts of emotional states we don't want to dwell on too long.  They are being raised to consciousness for healing though - not for dwelling on.

Every so often the Sabian Symbol speaks quite clearly to the event.  The symbol for the full moon is: Immigrants fulfilling the requirements for entering a new country.  Immigrants - so we are on the move - going from a place of familiarity to some unknown land -  fulfilling the requirements could be preparing ourselves for what we might discover in this new unknown land - a new country could well be places in our inner world that we have yet explore.

Artwork:  Cold-Tommy-Gin at DeviantArt.

 

Gemini New Moon - 29 May - 4:40am (AEST)

Any time we have a Gemini theme in the heavens the overall focus will be on WORDS.  Gemini - and its ruler Mercury - are all about words - the forming of words, language, the evolution of language, words going out (speaking, writing, texting) and words coming in (listening, reading, thinking and thoughts, ideas) the list goes on.  Words are associated with the element air - so a mental activity - involving the mind.  Development of the mind, development of logic, the ability to analyse, the ability to learn - and so now we include education, schooling and teachers - all under the heading of Gemini/Mercury.  And so for anyone with a strongly placed Gemini or Mercury words will be an important part of their life.


At the start of this new lunar cycle the spotlight then is on words - how we use our words in particular.
Words are incredibly powerful - once spoken they can never be taken back.  Likewise the power of our thoughts (our internal words) define our attitude to life.  The concept of "changing your mind will change your life" fits in here as well.  So does positive affirmations, mindfulness and the many other techniques that have come to light in last few decades.

Let's expand - this Gemini new moon has two extra factors that add greatly to the general interpretation of this Gemini new moon.  Firstly, the ruler - Mercury - is in its own sign of Gemini - meaning -  take all that has already been written about this new moon and multiply it by ten - but more importantly it sits at 29°  Gemini 34'.  The twenty ninth degree of any sign is often referred to as the anaretic degree or some say the karmic degree.  As it is the last degree in the sign there is special emphasis placed on "getting it right".  Planets on the anaretic degree are asked to go that bit further.  It's like we have had Mercury move through all the previous twenty eight degrees of Gemini and now we need to show something from what we have learned - what new words have you added to your vocabulary, have you made plans on how to act upon any new ideas you have had in the last three weeks - have you followed through on the idea of starting a new course of study - have you bought the book that captured your imagination.  So there is a priority here on our relationship with Mercury.

Mercury itself is slowing down at the moment.  The "speedy gonzales" of the zodiac - who usually covers just under two degrees of zodiacal latitude a day - will cross over into the sign of Cancer the day after the new moon - having moved only 40' from the previous day.  Mercury will slow right down until it comes to a full stop on 7 June when it stations retrograde and when then begin its second retrograde phase for the year traveling backwards from 3° Cancer 9' to 24° Gemini 23'.
Oh yes folks - we have another Mercury retrograde on our hands !!!!!  The exact dates of this retro period are 7 June until 2 July.  All the usual "warnings" apply.  More information on the retrograde movement of Mercury and how it will affect you personally will be posted shortly on the Planetary Postings Plus page of the www.aquamoon.com.au website.

The second stand out feature of this new moon is its exact - and I mean exact (only 12' separation) square to Neptune.  A quick refresher on Neptune - its the planet in charge of all states of mind where words are not needed or words are inadequate eg the meditative state, lovers looking longingly into each others eyes state, states of yearning and longing and the state of inebriation.  So with Neptune in the play we go from all words to no words - which believe it or not is fine with Mercury - he is after all able to work in two realms at once!!!  From the myth we learn that one of Mercury's chores was to fly (using his winged feet) to the heavens and collect messages from the gods and bring them back to earth so us mere mortals could have a relationship with the gods.  Understanding this about Mercury we can see how he is at home both communicating with the gods as he is communicating with mortals.  We could translate this one step further.  In this current day and age we can communicate with our god directly.  This can be done in various ways - prayer, mediation etc.  To hear the answers from our god - we must be in touch with our heart centre.  In this heart centred place there are no words - our god doesn't necessarily communicate with words - of course there are clairaudient folk out there who will hear the words - but for the majority of us - we get a feeling, an understanding, a sense of sorts that tells us what we need to know.  This form of communication is as real as any mind activity which works with words, language, ideas and thoughts.  All of these are present in the heart centre as well - the only difference is they are communicated to us in a different manner.
And just one more thing on the subject of heart centred communication and mind activity - of the two the heart is the more powerful communicator.  If you don't want to take my word on that idea - read Rick Hansen's book - Buddha's Brain.

Artwork from www.mystali.deviantart.com

 

Scorpio Full Moon - 15 May - 5:16am (AEST)

I'd like to present you with a thought at the start of this planetary posting - just for a minute give some consideration to what life on planet earth might be like if there was no money................


Please just sit with that concept for a moment or two.

Imagine the impact and consequences in your life alone.

This thought is actually tied into the upcoming Scorpio full moon - not just the Taurus (sun) Scorpio (moon) axis as highlighted in the heavens but also by the accompanying aspect patterns formed by the other planets at this time.  The Taurus/Scorpio axis is what most astrologers will call the money axis.  Taurus refers to your money - Scorpio refers to others money.  Taurus can also reflect the money you have whilst Scorpio reflects the money you earn.  The interplay for most of us is that we go to work and are paid a salary - that's the Scorpio bit - and then at the end of a week, fortnight or month that money is deposited in our bank account and becomes our money - that's the Taurus bit.  Adding fuel to the concept of working for a living is Saturn - who is sitting next to the moon in Scorpio and opposite the sun in in Taurus.  Saturn is in charge of work - he is that sense of duty and responsibility that gets us out of bed in the morning and onto the train (or into the car) so we can be at work on time and in a fit state to give eight hours of service to our employer. Saturn is a stern figure who has no time for nonsense, no time for excuses and no mercy on those who do not pull their weight.  Saturn - whose motto is one foot in front of the other - keep going. For those not in paid employment the sense of duty and responsibility can be even harsher as they find ways to supplement a welfare payment.  No-one survives too long in the current social structure without money.

Adding to the concept is an opposition between Mars and Venus.  This opposition is a little more powerful than most because both planets are in each others signs ie Mars is in Venus's sign of Libra and Venus is in Mars's sign of Aries - and on top of that they are both in their least favourite signs - Mars being a little more unhappy than Venus for he is actually traveling backwards at the moment.  Now a lot has been written recently about Mars in Libra - it was one of the four planets involved in the cardinal grand cross just a few weeks back.  And I agree with most astrologers who will talk to the relationships aspect of this planetary exchange.
But here is another way of looking at this aspect.
Mars is the planet that signifies our passion, our drive, our enthusiasm, our get up and go.  When we honour our Mars we feel fully alive, we feel excited about life and our place in it.
Venus on the other hand is about our joy and happiness.  The sign our natal Venus resides in will tell us much about gives you pleasure, what sates you, what gives you a feeling of self worth and self esteem.

OK now lets go back to the concept presented at the start of this posting - living in a world without money.  If there was no pressure in finding a job - any job - that would pay us enough money to support our way through life - if we were free to pursue our passion (Mars) - what would you choose to do that would also give you great joy and happiness (Venus).  If we allow those who are passionate about building to construct our homes, allow those who are passionate about gardening to grow our crops - allow those who are passionate about farming to tend our animals - allow those who are passionate about justice to become our police, lawyers, judges - allow those who are passionate about the welfare of the community to become the social workers - allow those who are passionate about healing to become doctors etc etc than we would have happy contented people all round.  Now remember no money would exchange hands - so you would choose your vocation because this is what sated you, fed your soul.  Without the need to choose a job based on the potential earning capacity - we would all be free to pursue our dreams.  It would also allow for those who are shunned by current society - basically anyone who doesn't contribute to the tax coffers - to offer their skills to the community and be honoured alongside those in the more acceptable paid roles.  Mars and Venus could work hand in hand rather than in opposition as they are right now.
Saturn's role would change too - he would become more the teacher and wise counsellor - which is his higher self - he could be seen as the community elder supporting those who needed to find their way in life - rather than the hard task master he is so often portrayed as now.

Lastly the ongoing Pluto Uranus square which stamps the current times is also caught up in the idea.  Uranus in Aries - the people seek their freedom.  Pluto in Capricorn seeks transformation of corporate greed (banks beware).

This Scorpio full moon - being the festival of Wesak or Vesak - commemorates the birth, enlightenment and death of the Buddha.  One of the main messages of the Buddha is detachment from anything temporal - our focus being turned instead to our true source of being - LOVE.  That our lives need to become simpler, less stressful, more soulful is a no brainer.  I am thinking that the Buddha might be smiling down on us - encouraging us to move beyond the physical - let go of the fear - and honour our souls.

 

Taurus New Moon & Solar Eclipse - 29 April - 4:14pm (AEST)

It wasn't until I sat down to write this posting that I fully came to appreciate the significance of the timing of this new moon/solar eclipse.  For many the last few weeks - which have seen the build up to the momentous grand cross configuration and the exacting total lunar eclipse of 15 April - have been particularly harrowing - for others it has been a time of making long overdue decisions about their life path and then for others it has seen a major shakeup in relationships.  I would be surprised if there weren't too many people on the planet who didn't experience the grand cross in some form or other - whether it was a minor physical, mental or emotional hiccup or a major life changing event - or somewhere in between - the energies have been so powerful these last few weeks very few would have gone through life without experiencing something.  For those of us who are still working with the fallout of the grand cross (and remembering here that the effects of the grand cross could be around for some time yet - so you may not as yet have come to realise your grand cross story) - this new moon/solar eclipse will come as somewhat of a relief.  Why ????  because it is in the first and most grounded of all the earth signs - Taurus. 

The sign of the bull - like the image - is one where the energies are a rock solid, no nonsense and stolid.  Taurus is also the sign of Mother Earth and what better way to ease the tensions of the last few weeks than a walk in nature.  Taurus is ruled by Venus - who currently sits in her second favourite home - Pisces.  Here we can combine the idea of Mother Earth with the greater idea of the web of life.  Many spiritualists have been pointing out that the biggest lie told to us over the last few centuries is that we as humans are separated from god/source/universe.  The next biggest lie is that we are separated from nature - neither of course are true.  Humans are just as much god as they are nature.  We are all one.  As above, so below.  If you feel shaken by the events of the last few weeks then you can be assured that so does the earth/nature and god/source/universe.  In the age of Taurus - we humans came together and formed the rudiments of village life.  We built homes, we perfected crafts and living skills, we tamed animals, we learned to barter - basically we took care of each other in a more secure and stable lifestyle.  Put that together with Venus - as ruler of Taurus- in Pisces and we can include our spiritual needs into the equation.  Herein lies the solace - we are all connected - we are all one.  No one is an island.  If you are suffering then so is the heart of humankind - if you are joyous then so is the whole of humanity.

Now for the facts around the solar eclipse.  This eclipse is termed an annular eclipse - meaning the moon is too close the earth to completely block the sun - hence at the greatest point of the eclipse (which is down somewhere in Antarctica) the sun's outer perimeter will still be visible.  The eclipse will be visible along the eastern seaboard of Australia but only as a partial eclipse.  Watch out for it around sunset.

Just harking back to the effects of the grand cross for a moment - the wonderful Ed Tamplin has one again done all the hard work around the geo/political fallout of the grand cross configuration.  Going back as far as May 1119 and using the t-square of Pluto/Uranus/Jupiter - Ed has uncovered that this astral formation was at play during times of significant uprisings against the ruling parties.  In May 1119 we had Crusader Wars and the formation of the Knights Templar.  The grand cross players were again in formation in 1240/41 when Batu Khan (grandson of Genghis) sacked the ancient Ruthenian (now Ukraine) city Kiev and move headquarters to Moscow.  In 1313 we have the Scottish Wars of Independence and the rise of Robert the Bruce.  The following year we have the final disbandment of the Knights Templar with the burning at the stake of its illustrious leader Jacques Molay.  The next gathering of our three planets is in 1648 with the civil war which saw the English Charles I beheaded and the Ukraine oust their European landlords in the Cossack rebellion and become part of the greater Russia.  In 1755 we have Great Britain defeated in the American War of Independence - in 1793 we have the beheading of the French King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette after the uprisings in that country.  It was also the year of the first slave rebellion in Haiti.  Lastly in January 1934 we had the ill fated German Polish Non Aggression Pact.  Ed sums up the historical record of the ongoing t-square this way:  "On the face of historical evidence the Jupiter-Uranus-Pluto T-Square has delivered considerable setbacks to western interests, be it via crusades, military routs, leaders overthrown or revolutionary division. It is certainly not an encouraging formation for the wealthy ‘one percenters’".  Do go to his website to read the entire article.

And lastly here's something that might interest some of you.  The exact degree of the grand cross last week was 13°.   Astrologer Emily Trinkaus has this to say about that significant degree:  "The precise alignment of the Cardinal Cross occurs at 13 degrees, the number sacred to the Goddess. Venus, the archetypal divine feminine since ancient times – known as Inanna, Isis, Ishtar, Astarte, etc. – completes five synodic cycles, forming a five-pointed star (pentagram) in the sky, every eight years. 5+8=13. The Moon, another signifier of the feminine and traditionally associated with the Triple Goddess (Maiden, Mother, Crone), completes 13 cycles in one year."  Which is really a lovely reminder as we enter a lunar cycle ruled by Mother Earth.

BTW - if any of you want to know more about the personal effects of the grand cross or of the lunar eclipse of 15 April or this upcoming solar eclipse - full explanations using your birth chart are available at Planetary Posting Plus.  Please see the Planetary Postings page on the Aquamoon website for full details on how to sign up to this subscription only newsletter.

Artwork by Cedar Lee - www.artbycedar.com/blog/2011/04/18/eclipse/

 

Libra Full Moon - 15 April - 6:42pm (AEST)  

Not only do we have a full moon on this date and time but we also have a total lunar eclipse which will be visible here in Australia especially on the east coast.  If you find a high spot or a place where you have a clear view of the horizon,  you will see the full impact of the eclipse anytime from 5:51pm until 6:23pm.  After that the earth's shadow will clear the path for the moon to fully reflect the sun's light at 6:42pm.

The full moon and lunar eclipse will be at 25° Libra 16'.  Those with planets or chart points around that degree in any of the cardinal signs will feel the effects of the eclipse the most.  This means if you have planets or chart points at 23-24-25-26-27 or Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn the dimming of the full moon light will be casting a shadow over these planets and points - reducing the output of energy - making them invisible to your psyche.  When the moon is taken from sight, the collective emotional response is devoid of direction (just like sailors are left directionless when the north star is hidden from sight).  Should the collective emotional response be left to its own devices we have all sorts of reactions being played out.  For some there will be grief, for others anger, for others fear.  These emotional responses may appear irrational or baseless.  The reason for this being that these feeling states have been allowed expression only because the usual master of ceremonies (the moon) has taken a short break from conducting affairs (hidden by the earth's path between the sun and the moon). Back to those who have planets or chart points at the nominated degrees and signs - you will have an extra level of involvement with this eclipse - that involvement being dictated by the planet or chart point and the house it is located in your birth chart.

And not only do we have a full moon and lunar eclipse but we also have Pluto stationing (standing still) before moving retrograde on the same day - 15 April.  Pluto is currently at 13° Capricorn 35' - in fact it has been on this degree and minute since 11 April and will be on the same exact degree and minute until 19 April.  That makes 13° and 14° of Capricorn fairly potent points at the moment.  Whilst a planet is stationary it is like a beacon in the night sky - its energies are focused and directed.  Think of a time you have needed to find something in the dark - you take your torchlight with you and scan the approximate area where your something should be found.  Backwards and forwards and all around goes your light until it spots your something - then you hold the light steady - shining on your something so you can pick it out.  So it is with a stationary planet - it has located the something - in this case a particular point in our solar system - and it is holding the light steady while it closes in on it.  So what does it mean to have Pluto stationary at 13° of Capricorn - well Pluto is currently unearthing each person's attitude to power and authority - do you have too much power - do you wield your power carelessly or heartlessly OR do you not engage with your power - do you need to step up into your power and authority and take charge.  Hold that thought as we close in on the grand cross of 23 April.

So before we have even mentioned anything about the actual full moon we have already uncovered some pretty strong energies accompanying what is normally the half way mark of a lunar cycle.  Basically when we get to a full moon in Libra we are needing to balance our needs with the needs of others.  The same message is presently being given by Mars - also in Libra and it is the same message as the north node of the moon which sits on the other side of the moon.  A rather loud message then from three players in the chart - its not all about you - take others into consideration.  Hold that thought too as we edge in closer to 23 April.

On the other side of the chart we have the sun (as we always do when there is a full moon) - therefore the sun is in Aries and it is joined by the south node of the moon and also by Mercury and Uranus.  On either side of the chart then - we have some really strong players.  Those who have gathered with the sun are proposing that we need to focus on our needs - to express our desires - to look at the bigger picture in relation to what I want - is that what others want too??  Is what I want for the good of all humankind??  Firstly though I need to know what I want - I need to be sure of my desires then I can engage them in the wider community.  If you have that sorted out then hold that in mind as the grand cross forms exact on 23 April.

There is one more player in this full moon/eclipse chart - Jupiter - who is residing in Cancer.  He is sitting at square angles to the full moon players and opposite the stationary Pluto.  Jupiter is probably the happiest of all the planets at the moment - he brings us blessings on the upcoming tensions of the grand cross.  The way he will do this is to make us strong in standing our ground.  Being who we are - knowing ourselves - being honest with ourselves - working with the parts of us that could be improved but overall giving thanks for our life.  If we are able to look ourselves in the eye and state the truth of who we are then we can stand tall - stand proud.  This is the last of the thoughts you need to hold onto as we hit 23 April.

We have four main players in the historical grand cross of 23 April 2014 - Pluto, Mars, Uranus and Jupiter.  Each has a message that it has been giving out for some time now.  That message will become exact on the above mentioned date.  No the earth will not be destroyed - nor will your life end (unless otherwise dictated by fate).  What will happen is that the current changes on the planet - changes in the way people are taking to the streets in protest over government policy, changes in the way we view governments, the banking and financial institutions, how we feel about the mining companies raping and pillaging the earth.  The message around this grand cross was given out over ten years ago by several eminent astrologers - this time will go down in history as the time when the people of the world  started to reclaim their power (Pluto) back from the authorities (Capricorn) - to make their voices heard (Uranus) to take peaceful action (retrograde Mars in Libra) in re-establishing a world order that better reflected the wishes of the people (Jupiter in Cancer) - not a select few.

Your personal involvement with the grand cross is contained in the planetary postings plus newsletters - head over to the website to sign up.

There is no doubt that from an astrological point of view we are in the midst of turbulent times.  If your own personal lives are stressed, full of frustration and angst, feeling like you are not getting anywhere - if you are feeling anxious or fearful for no apparent reason - then take heart - you are not alone. 

Artwork by Chris Potter - website chrispotterart.blogspot.com.au
 

Aries New Moon - 31 March 2014 - 5:44am (AEDT)

Whilst the vernal (autumn) equinox announces the astrological new year - it's the Aries new moon that really gives it that kick into action.  As with any new moon, we are invited to set our intentions in line with the energy of upcoming lunar month.  Aries energy is get up and go - its Nike's catch phrase "just do it" - it's adventuresome, it drives daredevils, it inspires pioneers, it goes to war, it takes on the bully (& wins), it's inspirational, it asks no questions nor does it read instruction manuals.  The downside of this could be that pioneers find themselves facing the natives, daredevils coming free from their machines, soldiers being shot at in war or you end up carrying a black eye from the bully's punch.  Aries doesn't think like that - for Aries there is a job to done or an adventure to take and so you just do it.  Considering most of us will hang back and read the instruction book or the maps, do our homework on unexplored territory and carefully consider our options in a probable David & Goliath battle - our downfall is that we miss the opportunity procrastinating.  We could say then that the Aries new moon is action vs vacillation.  Therein lies what we are faced with as we start the first lunation cycle of this new year.

Now while you are pondering as to how brave you might be this month - in taking on new projects that take a little more than the usual amount of courage - you might also want to consider that sitting right beside the sun and moon (who are at 9° Aries 59') is Uranus at 12° Aries 19'.  This amps up the stakes quite considerably - now it won't be enough for the daredevil motorcycle rider to clear six cars standing side by side - he will also attempt a double somersault at the same time.  And he will be successful - why - because Uranus thinks outside the square - it's inventive, it's ingenious - in fact it's geeky.  It will find a way.  It will take that sort of energy to change a standard daredevil jump into an act with a real WOW factor.  Adding Uranus to the mix means that we have an extra level of excitement.  It heightens the risk factor.  Uranus - as we may well know - is rebellious, can be antagonistic, is a non conformist.  Rules are there to be broken.  So now we really have upped the stakes.

Let's just sit with the concept of breaking the rules, going against the grain for a minute.  Two other astrologers wrote on this theme during the week.  Lynda Hill of Sabian Symbols renown wrote on the symbol for this new moon which is:  a teacher gives new symbolic forms to traditional images.
Traditions came up again in the writings of Eric Francis (who was actually talking about Pluto in Capricorn but I thought it was incredibly apt for the new moon as well).  Eric mentioned the movie and play - Fiddler on the Roof - in which Reb Tevye sings of tradition.  Just before bursting into song he says:  "Here in Anatevka we have traditions for everything.  How to sleep.  How to eat.  How to work. How to wear clothes.  For instance we always keep our heads covered and always wear a little prayer shawl.  This shows our constant devotion to God.  You may ask, how did this tradition get started?  I'll tell you (He pauses for a moment) I don't know.  But it's a tradition!"

Breaking with tradition - something we might ponder at the start of this new year.  It is quite possible that by now you becoming bored with the constant references back to the cardinal grand cross which will become exact on 23 April.  This is the Pluto square Uranus square Jupiter square Mars formation.  But as I have pointed out a number of times in planetary postings - the planets are not a television advert - here one minute and gone the next.  Well some are - but this aspect grouping is set to change the world - disrupt every known tradition by which we have lived for hundreds of years.  If you think I am exaggerating lets just remember what was happening at the time this grand cross was birthed.  This was the '60's - this was the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, this was Woodstock and the peace symbol, this was Vietnam, this was JFK and Martin Luther King, this was man on the moon.  It was these events and more that gave us an inkling of what is to come (and what is already happening).  The only thing that will be different this time is that the events will not be as peaceful as Woodstock nor will they look like the Vietnam protest marches.  The issues will be more urgent, the outcomes more dramatic.  If you think of how the '60's changed our way of life - music, dress, attitudes (especially to authority), relationships etc etc - then know that these areas of life - and many more - that are nothing but tradition will now be given new symbolic forms and just as Reb Tevye had to change with the times so too will we need to be courageous (Aries) and inventive (Uranus) enough to flow with what is to come.

Over at planetary postings plus there are now a number of articles looking at the major players in the grand cross.  In particular they are looking at how the world changing events will effect you personally.  If you take out a $10 trail subscription now you will have access to all the articles in time for the grand cross on 23 April.

Artwork by Ida Rentoul Outhwaite.

 

Virgo Full Moon - 17 March at 4:09am (AEDT)

Remembering that we are still in a Pisces lunar cycle and remembering that at the beginning of this cycle we not only had sun and moon sitting together in Pisces to form the new moon - but right beside that combination was Neptune - the ruler of the new moon - giving this last lunar phase of the astrological year an extra dollop of dreaminess or a yearning for something greater or a desire to merge into spiritual states which transcend the ordinariness of human existence - then we can set the scene for the Virgo full moon - which comes at the mid point of the cycle.

Virgo is often referred to as the clean freak, the nit picker, the obsessive compulsive - the one who has to have their socks in colour coded order in the sock drawer.  That of course is seen as an extreme case scenario of this otherwise ordered and well regulated sign.  Whenever we look at the opposite or shadow side of an astrological sign we not only see the polar opposite energy but we also see where these two actually meet - where they can support each other in their quest to manifest at the highest potential.

The similarities in these signs is their quest for the higher realms - their differences are in how they achieve that desire.  Whilst Pisces will drift off into dreamland or meditate into advanced states of consciousness - Virgo will follow procedures, protocols and respectively adhere to ritual.  As always the myths that come with the signs often give us the greatest clues as to the manifestation of the energy surrounding it.  With Virgo we have the ancient Egyptian idea of Ka - who represents the soul within the person.  Ka is the spiritual or eternal essence in each of us.  This essence or soul force desires to return to its source but to do so it must work with the human body to which it is assigned.  Within each of us then is Ka who drives us on to reach soul union with the source of all life.  The thing is Ka is understanding of what is entailed in this journey - the prayers, the rituals, the purification.  It is his mission to ensure that the human - to which he is assigned - will achieve the highest form of enlightenment after death and so move on from the seemingly never ending cycle of birth death and rebirth.

So both energies - Pisces and Virgo - seek ultimate unity with God (however that concept plays out for you).   Pisces through altered states and Virgo through purification and ritual.

It is interesting to note that as this astrological year winds down all the planets are currently positioned for the close out ceremony as it were.  There will be no new major planetary aspects - all is in place for the final farewell to this planetary year.

The new year will begin with the sun's movement over the cardinal point of Aries - first sign of the zodiac - first energy of the new cycle which happens on 21 March and which is accompanied by the vernal (autumn) equinox here in the southern hemisphere.

There will be more on the equinox and the astrological new year over in planetary posting plus during the week.
Planetary Postings Plus is also hosting insights into the four major players of the cardinal grand cross which will be the absolute highlight of 2014 and beyond.  This grand cross formation will bring further insights into the energies which were put into place back in the mid 1960's - a time in history that hosted flower power, love children, Woodstock, man on the moon, Vietnam War and the assassinations of JFK and Martin Luther KIng.
 

Pisces New Moon - 1 March - 7:00pm (AEDT)

We have now come to the last moon cycle in the lunar calendar.  Being the last new moon of the year - the Pisces new moon carries with it the  flavour of all the previous moons.  Pisces is defined only by the sum total of all that has preceded it.  It therefore holds the memory of all previous experiences - not only yours but the entire planetary experience as well.  And if you think that is overwhelming you have just started to understand the vastness of this sign. 


Because it is at the end of the cycle it is also about completion.  Having taken on board the wisdom and understanding of all the previous signs it is now ready for a new adventure - hence the symbol of Pisces - two fishes - one looking forward - one looking back.

Within its boundless state we have chaos, panic, fear.  Nothing is clear or precise - all is just a merging of images, dreams, ideals, memories, experiences, yearnings.  It is from this swirling mass that Pisces needs to find meaning, definition and direction.  It was also from a swirling mass of everything and nothing that the big bang was meant to have happened and we had the beginning of a new universe.  

Now if it isn't enough to have to contend with the pure Pisces energy of nebulousness - the universe has also decreed that the ruler of this new moon - Neptune - should sit right next to the co-joining of the sun and moon - meaning lets take all that was said above and double it by at least two.  The idea here is that you really do need to listen to the message of this new moon which is simply - go with the flow - hang loose - answers/direction/impetus will come from places and people you may never have encountered before this time.  It could feel like your world is moving within another world where there is no time or space and every so often the two worlds meet and you have clarity and understanding - but it is only for a moment for then the two worlds move on again.

Jupiter - the old ruler of Pisces - is also in contact with this new moon.  It graces this joining of the luminaries with his gifts and bounty.  Again the recommendation is if you can give up wanting to control or order your life and allow it to flow - much will be given you.  Meditation, yoga, tai chi - and any other regime that promotes a sense of something other than the self - are offered to keep you calm.  Preferably you will not go down the negative Pisces road of alcohol, drugs, fantasy trips as a way of coping with your out of control feelings.  Pluto plays a supporting role at this new moon and in his benevolent state he offers empowerment and truth - call on him if needs be.

The state of chaos and confusion in the heavens extends out to three of our solar system's planets.  These three planets are currently sitting still - stationary - waiting to move forwards and/or backwards - waiting to go in a new direction.  One has found its meaning and is now happy to move forward - this is Mercury who completed its three week retrograde phase just the day before the new moon - 28 February - do I hear a loud and relieved hoorah!!  Two planets are waiting to move backwards - these need to return to some time in the near past and redefine a thought, idea, experience, memory.  One is Mars who will begin its retrograde phase the same day as the new moon - 1 March - and who will remain retrograde until 20 May.  The other is Saturn who will go retrograde the day after the new moon - 2 March - and remain in that state until 20 July.  Remembering the adage: as above so below -  you might be forgiven for thinking you can't quite get your act together at the moment.
(The retrogrades of Mars and Saturn are discussed in depth in the new Planetary Posting Plus subscription service from Aquamoon). 

One thing that does need pointing out with all these planets to-ing and fro-ing around in the heavens - each one of them has a story to tell around the relationships theme.  Not that long ago - Venus (the planet that rules love) was also retrograde - 21 Dec 2013 til 31 January 2014.  Her message whilst she moves through the sign of Capricorn is to get real in your relationships.  Capricorn wants structure, definition, rules, boundaries - it needs to know exactly where it is going (completely opposite to Pisces).  So relationships that were just ambling along - relationships that had nothing really going for them would have been under quite a bit of pressure.  Mercury - the planet of communication - the stuff which keeps relationships alive - has also just finished a retrograde phase.  Here was the chance to review and maybe restructure the way partners communicate.  Now we have Mars going retrograde - Mars is currently in Libra - the sign that rules relationships - intimate relationships.  Our desires, our passions, our sexual expression will be up for review.  If things aren't happening in the bedroom - now could be the time when this becomes a real issue.  For those who are single - celibacy may be the issue.  Saturn is currently in Scorpio - he is also going retrograde.  The question to ask here is: what yours, whats mine and whats ours.  Its the "whats ours" story that will come under scrutiny.  And lastly the lunar nodes which changed signs 19 February.  These transiting nodes which talk to the collective past memory and future dreams are lying across the Aries/Libra axis.  The pull of the past will be centred on everything to do with me - the push to the future will be a situation where people can live together as individuals in harmony and peace.  Our relationships - whether they be with ourselves or with others - are key to moving forward into the new age.

Artwork: A Childhood Dream by Yusuf Artun.

 

Leo Full Moon - 15 February - 10:53am (AEDT)

The characteristics of any of the zodiac signs are defined by their ruler.  In the case of Leo that definition is given by the Sun. Physically the sun is great spherical orb of "plasma interwoven with magnetic fields".  Its chemical makeup is mostly hydrogen followed by helium and then traces of oxygen, carbon, neon & iron - thank you Wikipedia.  They are the facts but for us living here on planet earth the sun is far more than those few facts.  We are taught in primary school that we depend on the sun for life - no sun means no crops means no food - and this is just one example.  No sun also means that after a number of days we become mentally and emotionally depressed.  So the sun brings us life - physically, emotionally, mentally and for many ancient tribes it also bought spirituality. 

Understanding this then we get a picture of the characteristics of constellation of Leo.  Those who have a strong Leo in their natal chart will be bright and sunny type people.  They will be generous - as the sun is generous in sending us its gift of life.  They will be joy filled, playful, happy, carefree, even childlike - as we are when the sun is shining and we have the chance to enjoy the offerings given by a sun filled, warm, bright day.

The sun is associated with the heart as it holds the position at the heart of our solar system.  Going on from that we have the things are associated with the heart - which are many - but for now lets stick with the idea of love.  To be loved is to feel special, unique, singled out, the centre of your lover's universe. 
(Now here's an interesting piece of trivia - every year around this time we have a full moon in Leo - heart/love/specialness.  It's also the time we celebrate St Valentine's Day - coincidence? - I think NOT).  So again going back to the characteristics of Leo - we now see love as another main characteristic of this personality.

Knowing this about Leo we have a better appreciation of the intention of this full moon.  Each of us are unique, special and an individual.  We affect the lives of those around us - hence we are a mini solar system.  What we now need to do is a) understand that each person on this planet is unique, special and an individual and b) understand that the planet is made up of a entire community of special, unique individuals.

At any full moon the challenge is to integrate the energies of both the sun and the moon.  We looked at the sun in the last planetary posting.  Back then we looked at the characteristics of Aquarius and its ruler Uranus.  We saw amongst other things that this zodiac sign is also about uniqueness - but here it was about claiming that uniqueness for themselves by demanding the right to express themselves their way.  In Leo the uniqueness is bestowed.  Both signs honour the individuality of the person.  However in Leo it stops there.  I am unique, I am love, I am special - says Leo.  Whereas Aquarius says - fine, but so am I and so is every other person on the planet.  So its a little bit of the me vs the them situation.  Actually it is not a "versus" situation - it is more an integration situation.

As always the universe supports any current main message with other planetary aspects or planetary sign changes to give further emphasis to the point it is trying to get across.  With this full moon message - I'm special but so is everybody - we have the movement of the collective lunar nodal story leaving the taurus/scorpio axis and entering the aries/libra axis - this will happen on 19 February - four days after our full moon. 

Lunar nodes - as in the south node and north node of the moon - are points in each person's birth chart which speak to the physical manifestation of the soul's intention for this lifetime.  (Those of you who have had a reading with me will understand the importance I place on these two points in the chart).
We have a personal nodal story but we also have a collective nodal story which affects the entire planet.  As mentioned this story moves into a south node in Aries and a north node in Libra message.  South node in Aries (very basically) talks about me and my wants and desires as opposed to north node in Libra which talks to the needs, wants and desires of others.  Again we have this idea of I am special but so is everyone on the planet.  ME and WE and the blending of the two - herein lies the message for this full moon.

There is further emphasis on this message coming from the planet Mars which is currently in the sign Libra - but that's another story for another posting.  Those with an understanding of astrology will know what I am hinting at here.

Artwork taken from Fairies, Dragons & Other Mythological Creatures Facebook page - Artist not credited.

 

Aquarius New Moon - 31 January - 8:38am - (AEDT)

The mythology behind each of the planets and signs in astrology is not only fascinating but also incredibly accurate in portraying the characteristics of the planet or sign.  In the case of Aquarius we have the myth of a shepherd boy named Ganymede who found approval with the gods because he was so fabulously good looking.  Zeus took him up to Mt Olympus where he became cup bearer to the gods.  There is far more to the myth - mainly that Zeus took him as a lover which outraged his wife Hera and set off further stories of vengeful retribution on Hera's part.  There is also the suggestion that the love affair between Zeus and Ganymede became part of Greek mythology to give credence to the then common practice of homosexuality in that culture.

There is more to Ganymede than just what is written in mythology.  It's usually the extra bits that make the stories around the myths so exciting and bring our characters alive.  Dana Gerhardt uses myths, fairy tales and folklore extensively in her astrological writings.  This is what she has to say about Ganymede:

"He was also a radical, always disturbing the village.  He was teaching the sheep how to climb trees.  While his sister was sleeping, he dyed her hair purple and blue.  Afternoons he served fortitude tea to the crazy woman everyone hated.  She adored his inventions:  a thorn bush goblet scrubber, sandals on wheels, a wooden cart with wings, an eyepiece that revealed the fish on the moon, and finally a catapult that carried his resume to the heavens.  He wanted to serve in a big way.  Zeus hired him to be the gods' water bearer, until Aquarius (Ganymede) devised an ever-flowing water urn out of the stars, leaving him free to pursue other ambitions."

Now (hopefully) you get an idea of the type of energies this new moon will distribute over the planet.  Not only is Aquarius "one out of the bag" - tolerable at best, mostly ignored - refused admittance in high society, frowned upon for vulgar language and ideas - but then again, at the other end of the spectrum - he is also highly intelligent and inventive - and as we see in Dana's description - a friend of the underdog.  Uranus, ruler of Aquarius, is not much better than his charge.  Also known for his eccentricity and his complete oblivion to the etiquette of polite society - he is one for doing things his own way.  Not because he wants to "piss" anyone off - but rather the Aquarius/Uranus combination is at its best when left to explore possibilities in their own time and manner.

So what does that mean for us as we enter this new lunation cycle.  Well there are actually a number of really good pointers we could consider over the next few weeks.  Understanding all of the above information - we get to see that the Aquarius/Uranus duo is quite a unique character - not having a single care for another's opinion - he is totally free to express himself in whatever way he wants.  How many of us are free enough to say what is truly on our mind - of course there could be consequences - ostracisation/exile/banishment is nothing new to the Aquarian/Uranian ruled person.  Again it's no skin off his/her nose if you never talk to him/her again - these folk are adept at moving on and finding new communities.  So for one how prepared are we to stand in our uniqueness - to honour our individuality?

Another gift from this pair is the ability to think outside the square - a problem is simply a situation that needs inventive new ideas - and these guys have plenty of them.  What's more what they come with up is truly amazing.  So maybe we could just stop for a moment when confronted with our next challenge and see if we can't come up with something ingenious.  Aquarius is offering his support this month at no charge.

Lastly it is worth mentioning the Aquarian/Uranian concern and support for the underdog.  As much as these two have no care for the niceties of polite society, they  do have an affiliation with others who were refused entry to the mayoral ball or who simply didn't get an invitation.  Nothing upsets this pair more than seeing people put upon by the powers that be.  They go out of their way to make their life easier in some way.  Their sense of community is strong.  Let that be our third pointer.

Besides the new moon - we have two other planetary events worth noting - both occurring in the next week.  At the same time as we have the new moon, Venus, who has been retrograde since 24 December 2013, begins a slow turnaround before moving off in a forward motion on 2 February.  It is worth noting that the standstill degree of Venus is 13° Capricorn which is the degree of the grand cross on 24 April.  Much more on that in future planetary postings - but for now it would be worth noting what is happening in your life right now.  What is important for you - what is bringing you joy - where are your passions being directed?
One week after the new moon - Friday 7 February - Mercury comes to a standstill before heading into its first retrograde period for 2014.  The trickster will be retrograde until 2 March.  Those who are sensitive to Mercury's retrograde periods will have already felt its effects.  The shadow period began back on 22 January and the post shadow period will not finish until 20 March.  So plenty of time for this mischief maker to cause all sorts of grief in our lives especially around the internet, computers, technology and tech devices.  Back ups are a must before 7 February.

Lastly - Happy Chinese New Year - in this year of the wood horse may those who share my Chinese sign - especially those who were born in 1954 - have a great year and a wonderful 60th birthday.

Image taken from Fairies, Dragons & Other Mythological Creatures Facebook page.

 

Cancer Full Moon - 16 January - 3:51pm (AEDT)

In the last planetary postings (Capricorn new moon - 1 January) we talked about the influence of Venus and Jupiter as being the only planets to begin the year in a retrograde motion.  Retrograde planets tend to take their energy inwards and so their influence is felt more on a inner personal level than on the global stage.  Both planets are still retrograde at this full moon. 

Just as a short aside - between the new moon and this full moon, Venus actually began a new nineteen month cycle.  This happened as Venus traveling in her retrograde phase come in conjunction with the sun - here in Australia that occurred on Saturday 11 January.  As Venus (the feminine principle in the chart) is presently touring through the constellation of Capricorn (in its highest manifestation Capricorn is the sign of age gathered wisdom) - one astrologer suggested that this new cycle is one of focus on the grandmothers/ the crones/ the wise women.  If you would like to read more on that - here is the link:  http://virgomagic.com/

So in remembering what we were presented with at the start of the year - an inward energy from the two benefic planets - Venus & Jupiter - and now the added intention of the Cancer full moon - what we are seeing is a rather large emphasis on spending time in our inner world.  The inner world is the place of the imagination, intuition, gut feel - its where the quiet little voice resides - the one that says "you really need to pay attention to this situation" because deep down you know something is amiss or something more is happening than what you see on the surface.  The inner world tends to be ruled by the water signs - Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces - each of which are feminine signs.  It is hardly front page news when we make the statement that (generally) women are far more in tune with their inner world then men.  By in large men live in the outer world where life is dealt with through factual understanding.  Herein of course lies one the most significant difference between the sexes.  The thing is that men - or the masculine principle - tend to like to be in control of their environment.  They tend to be fearful of what is not "real".  That which cannot be proven is filed under superstition.  As a result women have been persecuted for the last couple of thousand years when they spoke of something they "knew" - the knowledge having come from within.  Thankfully we are moving on from a patriarchal dominated society - hence Mars in Libra.

As mentioned Cancer is one of the water signs that rule this inner world.  So at this full moon we are taken inward - men and women - and reintroduced to our imagination, intuition, gut feel.  We are reminded of the powerful nature of this place for within this realm we are often faced with information we don't usually care to know.  It can be a place of confrontation with one's inner soul.  But now more than ever we have the chance to see the beauty and the wisdom that lies in our inner sanctuary.  Again let's remember that at the moment Venus is residing here and so is Jupiter.  Venus brings joy, happiness, delight and beauty with her.  Jupiter also brings joy - he has the ability to see the good in all situations.  In fact Jupiter in Cancer is in exultation (for those that understand some astrology).  So this is not a time to fear the unknown inner world - this is a time to go there with the great expectation that you will hear the quiet little inner voice tell you such things as: "what a beautiful person you are" - "what a delight it is to have your company here" - "let me tell you all things I love about you".  Sound a bit confronting or mushy - maybe but when was the last time you recognised your own self to be one of beauty and delight.

The sun is in Capricorn and sits in opposition to the full moon.  Capricorn - in his more usual mode - is an energy that has no time for "mushy".  Even though it is a feminine sign - it is far better known as the sign of the father and so brings in the masculine influence.  Therefore we have on one side of the chart (heavens) the male saying "just give me the facts, man - nothing but the facts"  and on the other side of the chart we have moon in Cancer (in rulership I might add) saying "oh come on now - I know you are not the big strong man you pretend to be - I know there is a soft inner side to you".  So yes if you are uncomfortable about the small inner quiet voice telling you about your beauty and your joyful self - it's because there is this finger wagging, no nonsense kind of guy insisting you get on with matters at hand.  At every full moon we have a choice - we can look to the radiance of the full moon (which is transient) or we can look to the sun (which is permanent).  Or better still we can combine the energies and rejoice in the current crop of fathers who have no trouble ohhing and ahhing as they play with their newborns.

Artwork by Christian Schloe.

PS  For those who are interested in what astrology has to say about 2014 from a world geo-political point of view - Mundane Astrologer Ed Tamplin has put together a magnificent article on his website.  A must read if you want to know what is in store for the planet in the next twelve months.

 

Capricorn New Moon - 1 January 2014 - 10:13pm (AEDT)

How magical that the first new moon of the year should fall on new year's day (according to the man made Gregorian calendar) - that gives this new year a special oomph right from the start.
The first new moon of the year is always in Capricorn - a sign that is Saturn ruled.  Saturn is about structure, rules, order, boundaries, discipline - he has been called a control freak, the grim reaper, the hard task master - he is generally humorless, sombre and stern - well that was all before his son - Jupiter - took over the Olympian throne - waged war on the sour puss and banished him from the kingdom.  Needless to say then when we are under the rule of Saturn life can get rather gloomy, depressed, dark.  Our attention seems to dwell on our faults and failings rather than what's great about me.  Saturn will tell you there is always room for improvement.  Hence around this time of the year we tend to come up with new year's resolutions - we burden ourselves with strict adherence to self made promises which will have us lose 20kgs in one month or we join the local gym with the idea of raising our fitness level from naught to high in a week or we give up the smokes at the stroke of midnight.  We take on Saturn's idea of fun.  I think we get the picture.
Oh yes - there will be partying tonight (New Year's Eve) with plenty of sore heads in the morning - and that's on the back of an entire week or more of merriment and indulgence.  No wonder we go with the extreme promises of total reform come New Year's day.

But if we ditch the extreme and look to something a little more realistic (with a touch of daring) when we look at what we might want to achieve during the next twelve months - then we will not only find Saturn giving us a good nudge in the right direction but we will also have exceptional input from a range of other planets as well at this new moon.
Not only is the sun and moon conjunct in Capricorn but we also have Mercury and Pluto in the sign of the mountain goat.  On top of that we have Uranus in Aries, we have Jupiter in Cancer and we have Mars in Libra - So we have a total of seven planets and luminaries in what is referred to as cardinal signs - meaning we have a huge amount of action orientated energy flooding our universe at the moment.  Herein lies our second oomph at this new year.

Four of the aforementioned planets are loosely forming a grand cross - in other words that are all in square aspect to each other and together make a one large square called the grand cross.  Two of these planets we have been talking about since the middle of 2012 - the Pluto Uranus square.  This square was recently joined by Jupiter and even more recently by Mars.  The grand cross becomes exact on 24 April this year and this feature is the outstanding one for the year ahead.  As a result of that planetary formation you may be assured that 2014 will be a year of change - great change.  These changes will be for the most part deep, inner, attitudinal changes - they will be like shifts in consciousness or like spiritual vibrational heightening. 

To prepare us for the changes ahead - the universe has deemed that the two planets astrologers refer to as the benefics - Venus and Jupiter - should be retrograde (appearing to be traveling backwards in the sky) at the start of this new year.  These two planets are responsible for all that is good in life -  love, joy, happiness, pleasure, gift giving, good luck.  When they are traveling in a direct/forward motion we find joy and happiness and all the other qualities usually coming to us from outside events, situations or people.  But when they are traveling in reverse motion the challenge is to find that joy, happiness and abundance within.  I, personally, believe this to be the greatest message this new year.  Finding our own joy, building a strong sense of self love, gifting ourselves with an understanding that we hold within us all the resources necessary to live a fulfilled and abundant life.  This is not a time to look outside ourselves to fulfill our 2014 wishes.  This is a time to recognise and strengthen our inner resources.  The geo-political astrologers are suggesting there will be major changes in world governments, banks and large corporations throughout the next few years.  Those systems and resources we have relied on (and are relying upon now) to sustain our lifestyles will either be gone or greatly restructured.  There is no doubt there will be tumultuous times ahead.  What's needed as they say in the classics is a clear head.  I am advocating a clear head and a strong heart.  

May I wish you all a wonderfully fulfilling and abundant 2014.

 

 
 
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