The Summer Solstice and the Wisdom of Spiritual Action

Summer-Solstice-Spirtuality-2017

From our earthbound perspective, as we watch the Sun on his apparent path around us, he reaches the fullness of his heat during the Summer. Today, actually this morning at 12:25 AM Eastern, the Sun moved into the cardinal sign of Cancer, heralding the Summer Solstice, the height of his annual golden reign over the sky. In the Northern hemisphere there’s no question that we’ve left behind the experience of freshness, newness, and possibility that Spring brings, as we achieve the high point of our journey living life through the fullness of long, hot days.

The word Solstice is derived from the Latin “solstitium”, and means “the sun stands still.” So I like to think of each Solstice, both Summer and Winter, as a moment when we pause, take stock, reflecting on our connection and experience to our own “hero’s journey” which is symbolized by the Sun. In mythology the characters at the center of all hero stories are “solar characters.” In astrology, the symbol for the sun is a circle with a dot at the center, and from a personal perspective the circle represents the perfection of life around you, and the dot is you. Each of us has the Sun somewhere in our birthcharts, meaning that it is our birthright to live as a solar hero, or a golden child – at the center of the perfection of life surrounding us. The path to that experience is called the “hero’s journey” in which we live our life experiences with consciousness, moving ever closer to ourselves as the rightful center of our own lives. For some, this journey might be challenging and fraught with fear, obstacles, and challenges. For others it may be easier… but whichever is your experience, it’s a perfect day to pause and reflect on where you are in your own “hero’s journey.”

What can be helpful in that reflection is to understand the energies available to us in this particular Solstice, which I like to think of as being the “background energy” informing the entire season. This morning’s Summer Solstice astrological chart shows that taking action on our beliefs may be somewhat challenging, but also supported by the Divine – and if we take the challenge we may be rewarded with the wisdom that the task accomplished brings. (Mars in Cancer applying to the square to Jupiter in Libra. Mars in Cancer applying to the trine to Neptune in Pisces.) This energy creates the impetus we need to allow our inner Divine nature to inform and support our quest for wisdom through right, if perhaps challenging, action.

There is also emphasis on analyzing our ideas, and allowing our curiosity to push us into new ways of thinking, and communicating whatever we come up with. Through these new ways of thinking is a potential kernel for healing a wound, or wounds – perhaps wounds around playing the victim, loss, needing redemption, or feeling outside the realm of God/Spirit/Universe/Wholeness. (Mercury conjunct the Sun, both in a square to Chiron.)

With the Mars/Jupiter emphasis, there are other ways that we might see this energy manifesting: pushing beliefs on others, courage of our convictions, the conquering spirit, ambitious aims, the need to travel or “go far,” a pioneering spirit, daredevil actions, righteous vindictiveness, the “means justifies the end” mentality, gambling or taking risks toward an ideal. There are many ways to combine the energy of Mars and Jupiter, but consciously choosing to elevate your actions with optimism and grace is one of the finest, and a good choice to strive toward.

Happy Summer Solstice everyone!

Summer-Solstice-2017

Summer Solstice 2017 – Sun moved into Cancer at 12:25 AM Eastern / Drawn from Atlanta, GA

 

The New Year New Moon in Capricorn – Dec 29, 2016

WED. DEC 28, 2016: Spend some time alone today mulling over where you are in life in order to align yourself with the New Moon in Capricorn, the New Year, and the resolutions that are knocking on your heart. The New Moon is exact Thursday morning, Dec 29, at 1:53 AM Eastern. And as the Moon becomes dark today, with no visible crescent… this is when we can tap into the fruitful, fertile darkness of our psyches. When we go into our internal darkness digging for rich, redolent emotional fodder with which to grow, we are often rewarded with evolutionary bounty that was previously locked in our unconsciousness. Be fearless and completely honest in this dark space of the unconquered Self. Now is absolutely the time for this kind of inner questing. It’s also the time to retreat away from others in order to reflect, restore, and rejuvenate.

Themes of this New Moon are Capricornian in nature – so ponder these words and phrases to help you capture the spirit of this Cosmic moment meant for regenerating your Self, renewing your emotional structure, and planning your new beginnings: 

new-moon-breath-flippedintegrity
conscientiousness
structure
foundation
groundedness
framework
commitment
determination

perseverance 
achievement
goals and goal setting
work and career
responsibility
practicing reliability
self-security
self-control
being or becoming supportive
security minded
tradition
status-quo
the time-tested
time
patience

This New Moon is more than simply about Capricorn however.

First, there’s a distinct emphasis on Mercury, and Mercury is Retrograde. To me this emphasizes the right timing to retreat, if only for short time, into alone-ness and into the unconscious, while using Mercury to delve into the ways of your mind… how do you process? How do you communicate? How do you “travel” through your life? Could your mental workings benefit from being more grounded, more serious, more pragmatic… or less so? 

Then, there’s a connection to Neptune this new cycle that lends a less defined edge to this straight-laced Capricorn Moon. Neptune offers opportunities to deeply spiritualize this process, to open to grace, to seek the sublime. There’s the potential for a softer, more yielding sensation around this new emotional cycle than straight Capricorn energy would afford. There may be artistic possibilities – whether being artistic or appreciating art – to tap into that would enrich your New Moon experience. And while the Capricorn Moon may feel the need to retract away from emotionalism, its connection to Neptune and Pisces brings the need for connecting, for union – for communion. So try to make efforts to be alone for a period of time, but if you’re feeling the need to be with loved ones or to make deep connections, move gently into that space as well. It’s a very interesting combination of energies that wants to be both practical and dreamy simultaneously. 

Mars is also in this mix of very different energies… Mars in Pisces, is also closely aligned with Neptune. Playing with the symbols we can come up with 1) taking action on dreams 2) the non-violent warrior 3) conquering through yielding 4) yearning for the Divine
5) striving for the boundless 6) love conquers all. There are certainly other possibilities that aren’t quite as positive… but we’re not going there right now. 

By 7 pm Eastern the evening of the 29th, the Moon encounters Pluto… deepening and intensifying this New Moon moment. Again, there’s emphasis on diving deeply emotionally, and going into the dark. Pluto assures us that there, in that blue-black space, we can emerge with gold if we dare to see and experience totally, fearlessly, and without holding back. Extremes are probable. 🙂

And finally, this New Capricorn Moon connects with the North and South Nodes of the Moon, connecting us with the past and pushing us toward the future. It may be that emotions arise around things that happened some time ago. If that’s your experience, honor those emotions and see how you can distill something that can propel you forward – toward you purpose. 

So, I’m wishing for you this New Moon and this New Year the experience of going deeply, profoundly into your being – going there with beauty and compassion, with imagination and with vision – and finding something concrete, some kernel of self-truth and integrity, that you can form a solid framework around. Something new that you can commit to, work hard toward and bring into manifestation… something that will grow stronger and better over time. I wish for you to do your best so that you achieve your best – not just for you, but for all of us who will receive the bounty of the gifts you provide to the world. 

Happy New Moon. Happy New Year!

new-moon-in-capricorn-dec-29-2016

New Moon in Capricorn – Dec. 29, 2016 at 1:53 AM Eastern – yellow lines show connections from the New Moon to Mercury, the Sun, and Pluto. Green lines show connections from the New Moon to the South Node, Mars, Neptune, and the North Node.

Fasten Your Seat Belts, It’s Gonna Be a Bumpy Ride! ~or~ Perspective on Our Current Undulating Foundation (the Full Moon & Integrating the Saturn/Neptune square) Plus Fall & Holiday Specials!

October 14, 2016
 

It’s going to be quite a weekend! The Moon will be full in Aries VERY early on Sunday at 12:23 am Eastern. The way we communicate and think is challenging the way we take action on our will and our deepest desires. Our ability to assert ourselves is punching our ability to regenerate and transform, or conversely,the pull to degenerate or be dangerous. The Full Moon, who always triggers high emotions, will connect with the energy of sudden unexpected changes and events – so be ready for anything! There’s a revolutionary feel to what’s happening, and we can experience these energies as empowerment or as rebellion, both personally, and obviously, in our world. If you’ve been following the presidential campaign at all, you know exactly what I mean.

The planetary motions I’ve listed above represent what’s happening now via the Moon, Mercury and Mars. They are the quick moving cosmic entities who trigger the longer term trends provided by the slow moving planets.

The long term trend that has been the backdrop of our lives since late 2014 is the Saturn/Neptune square (and this is actually the final contact between these two in their 36-year cycle that began in 1989 with the Berlin Wall coming down – a perfect example of a separative boundary crumbling). The final EXACT contact between these two life changing forces occurred on Sept.10, 2016, and now we are in what I call “the fallout” period of any major planetary aspect – that period of time when we’re trying to integrate all that we’ve experienced and learned during the time the two planets were contacting each other. In my work with clients over the years I’ve seen that this period of time can be quite challenging, as this is when we decide whether or not to “learn the lesson.” This fallout will be in effect at least until the end of the year… let’s ponder that for few minutes.

Saturn, as a pure energy, represents our structure, the foundation that we have built for our lives, our traditions, the status quo. He symbolizes our urge toward success and integrity, as well as our fear of failure. Saturn asks that we work hard toward a goal and that we accomplish what we set out to do on one hand – yet he also symbolizes where we feel “less than” and unable to perform due to perceived boundaries and obstacles on the other. Saturn is the great task-master and time-keeper, and lives solely in the plane of reality, for good or for ill.

Neptune, like the sea, is forever moving, shifting, ebbing and flowing. He
represents transcendence, compassion, the dissolving of boundaries and our urge to become one with all that exists – he is our urge toward God. Yet, Neptune also symbolizes illusion, delusion, deceit, addictions – all things that escape or cover reality and the truth. Neptune, at its lowest vibration, is the crux of co-dependence and victim-savior complexes. Neptune energy can have us believing a lie, while masquerading as a truth that is sublime.

It is these two energies combined that have created the sense that our structure, our very foundation (Saturn), is shifting – undulating back and forth (Neptune), no longer providing the security we crave, and challenging our sense of what is real. (We can witness this both in the political arena and in the weather.)

When Saturn and Neptune shake us, we are caught in moment in time when we must differentiate between what is real and what is fantasy, and be willing to let go – to surrender – on some levels, while taking up the challenge and being willing to build anew on other levels. We strive to bring our dreams into reality and over time are successful as the best case scenario – or we are so caught up in our self-defenses and co-dependencies and victimization that we feel completely unable to move forward as the worst case scenario. We feel our reality dissolving around us. And of course, there are all the complexities in-between.

The best possible way to work with both Saturn and Neptune simultaneously is to honor both… working with Saturn means to create and apply yourself to a goal, even if it’s hard to do. Make a plan and take the necessary steps to fulfill it – and then reap the rewards of your hard work via success and that golden sense of accomplishment. Working with Neptune means to open your heart, to let down your defenses and allow your compassionate nature full throttle. It means going toward your own divinity – working your spiritual practice. As a matter of fact – working (Saturn) your spiritual practice (Neptune) honors both the Gods. And that’s a happy combination.

Regardless of whether we are working the Saturn/Neptune square at the higher or lower vibration personally, our world is reflecting this challenge all around us. It is a zeitgeist that we must not turn away from. We may feel that we would prefer to escape into our internal world which feels safe and comfortable, not facing the new way… but instead, we must work toward something tangible, something with integrity, something real. We must be present in this moment in time and fully engage our divinely inspired creativity to make the most of where we are.

It is my hope that we are all able to unite with our own newpersonal truth and with others in a more compassionate way, and that we can build something for ourselves and our society that is a gentler, more inclusive, less boundaried reality than the one we have been witness to lately.

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Mercury Retrograde – August 30, 2016 – Heart before Head

Mercury-detail-of-Jupiter-Mercury-and-Virtue-by-Dosso-Dossi-painting-1524

Yes my friends, it’s that time again! Mercury has stationed (the appearance of standing still) and will turn Retrograde in Virgo tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016. I’d love for you to read my now classic article called “Mercury Retrograde – The Unlikely Healing Gift” here. I think you’ll find it very helpful in navigating this sometimes tricky time.

This Retrograde coincides with the New Moon Solar Eclipse in Virgo on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016 at 5:03 am. That’s a lot of energy! What I want to impress on you about this Retrograde and Eclipse is to let your heart come before your head… allow Luna (your emotions and the expression of those emotions) to feel her way into where you are; and let Mercury (your mental processes) take a back seat. He is going backwards after-all. 🙂

Trusting your intuition and making space for emotional connectedness is a great way to make new beginnings at the New Moon. Go into the dark of the moon and let yourself explore emotionally while letting your mind’s whirling have a rest – internalizing thoughts and reevaluating how your process is appropriate – just please be sure that you’re also tuning in to the feeling aspect of who you are.

Both of these events, Mercury Retrograde and the New Moon Solar Eclipse, activate Virgo and Pisces – so bring balance between analyzing and blurring the details, between discernment and “it’s all good,” between feeling in-control and out-of-control – and most of all, between being a martyr and being a victim. Both the darkness at a New Moon and Mercury Retrograde ask us to introspect and to restore – not to push forward hastily without feeling or thought.

Here are a few specifics to know about this Mercury Retrograde: Mercury will travel backwards from 29 degrees of Virgo to 14 degrees of Virgo… so that Virgo/Pisces axis is being strongly impacted, as is the Gemini/Sagittarius axis. If you have have planets in any of these 4 signs, this Retrograde is very much yours. 🙂 Especially if your planets are between 12 and 30 degrees of those mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, & Pisces).

Mercury-Retrograde-Virgo-Aug-30-2016

This is the chart for the beginning of Mercury Retrograde in Atlanta, GA – Aug. 30, 2016  -8:59 AM Eastern

Jupiter and Venus Shining Together TONIGHT = Big Love!

Venus-Jupiter-27Aug2016

If you’re very, very lucky you have a perfect view of the Western horizon. If you don’t, you might want to go find that perfect view, because tonight (Saturday, Aug 27, 2016), about a half hour to 45 minutes after sunset (sunset in Atlanta is 8:08 pm – check your local time), you’ll be able to see Venus twinkle out from the darkness just above the Western horizon, very shortly followed by Jupiter in almost exactly the same spot. A beautiful moment!

Venus and Jupiter are the two brightest lights in our sky after the Sun and Moon – when they come together it’s quite a show! Bear in mind however, that light around you and light from our planet may make these two beauties challenging to see unless you’ve found a nice dark spot. Pair that with the fact that Venus and Jupiter will be setting by 9pm  Eastern, so it’s crucial to be in your viewing position on-time, a little before sunset. And you WILL want to see this – this visual event doesn’t occur again until Nov. 22, 2065, and the last time we were able to see this encounter was Nov. 14, 1660. Very rare.

But let me say, that whether you see this lovely event or not, these two planets create something pretty special when they shine together. A few words that describe the combination of Venus and Jupiter energies are: big love, happiness, a noble heart, beautiful art, happy gatherings, extra confidence, a beautiful future – you get the idea. The heart swells with well-being and generosity, and seeks pleasant company and beautiful surroundings. And the effects of this meeting of planets is not just valid for this evening. They’ve been dancing together since about August 18, and will be fading in energy by the first week of September. But energies experienced and lessons learned are not forgotten. 🙂

Tonight’s Venus/Jupiter meeting of worlds in Virgo also includes little Mercury – he will be very close to the two much brighter planets. With the inclusion of Mercury, we may just experience a coming together of minds on some level, or find some peace within our own minds where we have been restless or anxious. There could also be an expansive, inclusive nature to our thoughts, and some very expressive communication. Perhaps through music or art, which would be very appropriate. Perhaps through beautiful words. Poetry – loving murmurs.

This whole lovely shebang occurs across the Virgo/Pisces axis in an opposition to Chiron, The Wounded Healer. Deeper analysis leads to the possibility of relationship wounds finding rest through forgiveness, and the potential for seeking a future in which we don’t play the role of victim or stay lost in co-dependence or addiction – both very prevalent Virgo/Pisces themes.

I like to think that with this beautiful emphasis from the heavens, in the sign of Virgo and opposite Chiron in Pisces, that we’ll feel compelled to open our hearts to ways of being in true service to others – in service to, rather  than serving (or being a door-mat) – meaning that we don’t lose  or forget ourselves when we serve, but rather serve from a strong sense of Self (the Jungian, individuated capital “S” Self); from self-worth in the spirit of unconditional BIG love, for both ourselves and others.

It is thought by more than a few that it was a Venus/Jupiter conjunction that led the wise men to discover the Christ child 2000 years ago. The two planets connecting so closely together, especially if both are in full light, create the illusion that they are one enormous, amazingly bright star – perhaps the Star of Bethlehem. You can read more about that possibility here and it’s very interesting.  And here’s another article offering several different possibilities on the Star of Bethlehem. 

Venus-Jupiter-Conjunction-Aug-27-2016

This is the chart of the moment of the exact Venus/Jupiter conjunction along with Mercury at 6:29 PM Eastern time. We won’t be able to see these two beauties at that point – the sky will have to get darker first. By 8:30 we should be able to see them, and certainly by 8:45.

Venus-Jupiter-Conjunction-Setting-Aug-27-2016

This chart at 8:55 PM Eastern shows Jupiter, Venus, and Mercury setting – just about to dip below the Western Horizon.

 

The Sagittarius Full Moon – again! – and the Summer Solstice of June 20, 2016

Couple-overlooking-mountains-with-moon-and-balloons

Welcome to the second Full Moon in Sagittarius (7:02 AM EDT today, June 20, 2016) in a row… that’s pretty unusual! This Moon is called The Strawberry Moon, signifying to our early Native Americans that it was time to pick ripened fruit. (Maybe we can use that symbolism metaphorically. What ripened fruit is it time for you to pick?) This Full Moon also occurs at the 29th degree of Sagittarius, with the Sun at the 29th degree of Gemini, which is a very special degree. Add to that the Summer Solstice beginning today when the Sun moves into Cancer at 6:34 PM EDT, and we have very exciting energies to explore!

There are several different ways to come to this Full Moon. First I invite you to think back to 6 months ago, specifically Dec. 11, 2015, when the Moon was New in Sagittarius. Can you remember anything that you may have been excited or anxious about? Anything you were just beginning or making decisions on? Today is a culmination of that time, a moment of en-lighten-ment around whatever was going on in your life then. I also invite you to look back to a little over a year ago – May 2, 2015. This was the last Sagittarius Full moon until last month’s  (on May 21) – so we’ve come a full year’s cycle since then. What has occurred for you emotionally during the past year? Track back and really think about what has come to fruition for you, and whether you have evolved in meaningful ways emotionally – perhaps pushing past boundaries and creating higher, broader parameters, which is what the Sagittarius Moon requests of us. Or perhaps you’ve devolved? In which case, you have another opportunity to become unstuck and get moving.

With-this-fiery-MoonSecond, this Full Moon in Sagittarius at the critical 29th degree seems to be highlighting relationships pretty “loudly.”  With this fiery Moon in opposition to Venus, the planet of all things “love” and the ways of being that go with it, there’s an immediate understanding that this lunar event impacts us where we relate to others. Add to that a square to Chiron, our friendly karmic relationship indicator, as well as a trine to Juno, who wears the crown of symbolizing relationship from a karmic commitment perspective, and we have a relationship karmic cocktail. Juno, amazingly, is also at that 29th degree – of Libra in her case – which just happens to be the sign of, you guessed it, relationship. That critical 29th degree carries the energy of taking a new direction, sometimes in a completely unexpected way that belies our past ruminations and carefully laid plans. (And don’t get me wrong, I’m thinking positive here!) Degree 29 can carry a fated quality to it, and sometimes has us feeling a bit out of control. So there can be questions around our commitments, or, and better, opportunities to refresh them!

One other ally in this cosmic lunar posse pushing us to “clean” our love auras is Uranus – that feisty renegade who calls it like he sees it, and breaks down the status quo. So at this Saggy Full Moon, I’m imagining there may be some culminating moments providing us opportunities to clear our love alliances, particularly those with whom we carry karma. There can be enormous healing during this Full Moon energy… healing that allows us to attend to our loved ones with more acceptance of their uniqueness. Healing that opens the doors of the past and the future, asking us to balance our need for freedom and independence within relationship with our deep caring and devotion of our loved ones. This isn’t the time to be proud or stubborn, but a time to talk, to risk the truth, to stand by our commitments in a more faith-ful way, in order to create something more authentic – something that feeds our vitality and our emotional health. For many, I know there’s a whole lot of YUMMY that can happen with this Full Moon…

Thirdly, Mercury is also at 29 degrees in this Full Moon chart… and it’s creating a trigger point to the Saturn / Neptune square. How does this land? We need to talk. We need to talk about what makes us feel safe and secure. We need to talk about what confuses us, and about our pasts – not to create an environment of judgement, but to create an environment of acceptance and grace. Let’s get past the fears and anxieties that are holding us back (Saturn), be open about our dreams and our vision for the future (Neptune), and create a goal for our compassion – a goal for our spiritual evolution. And then make a commitment to it! You know what happens when we make a real commitment. All heaven and earth move to support it… And with Jupiter also involved in this mix, we can truly benefit from positive thinking here.

One-World-One-Love-One-Community-Global-Hands-HeartFourthly (and I’m about to get political) I like to think of Sagittarius as being “the citizen of the world.” That’s the phrase that Banzhaf & Haebler use in the book Key Words for Astrology as the by-line for Sagittarius. “The citizen of the world.” That’s always stuck in my mind. In the past 30 days we’ve been sandwiched between two culminating points – two Full Moons in the sign Sagittarius – highlighting who we are as citizens of the world. And with the deadliest mass shooting in the history of our country just behind us, we are left pondering – at least I hope we are – how we go about being better citizens of our world. Perhaps that’s the reason we’ve had two Sagittarius Full Moons in a row… so that we must use this emotionally charged energy to become wiser citizens of the world – to become righteous about gun control despite previous blocks preventing that effort, to become higher minded around, and more tolerant of, those who have different lifestyles. The 15-hour gun control filibuster on the the Senate floor this past Thursday, led by Senator Chris Murphy, is a perfect example of Sagittarius energy “having enough” and “stump thumping” to make a point of justice. And sadly, the horrific actions of the shooter are also an example of the lowest possible vibration of Sagittarius at work – being so self-righteous and filled with the fervor of your cause that you take life, feeling somehow justified in your actions. The shooting and the filibuster occurred between 2 Sagittarius Full Moons, the second one at the critical 29th degree – meaning we’ve reached a critical turning point, and while we may not follow any plans we’ve previously put in place, and we may be feeling overwhelmed – we know we must go in a new direction. Fate is in play here, and that new direction must have greater meaning and a higher purpose, and point us toward freedom and justice – for everyone – as we move forward. All Sagittarian qualities. (An interesting point: the 1:58 AM chart for the Orlando shooting, when the first gunfire was heard, has THE SAME DEGREE – 29 degrees Sagittarius – on the MC – the most elevated point in the chart, which is the angle that shows how we see that moment in the greater world. Blows my mind.)

The key here is meaning… what expanded awareness and meaning can we derive from these events, and how do we move positively forward with that meaning? And how do we derive wisdom from something so horrifying? The comedian Hasan Minhaj addressed members of the press and members of Congress at the 72nd Annual Radio and Television Correspondents’ Association Dinner this past Wednesday evening – 3 nights after the shooting. He said something in his address -a very Sagittarius address I might add – that seems to push us toward the higher vibration of Sag – striving for higher things, and expanding our awareness. He said, “Stuff like this (the mass shooting) is going to continue to happen unless we recognize that civil liberties are an all or nothing game. A rising tide lifts all boats. It’s not pick or choose. So whether you like it or not, we all have to step up and fight for each other – otherwise the whole thing is a sham.” A “rising tide” pulled by these Sagittarius Moons. That’s what I’m thinking. It all seems quite a bit zeitgeist-y.

(If you want to see comedian Hasan Minhaj’s full address click here. The first 18 minutes are funny in a “roast” kind of way. The famous 5 minutes begin at 18:16 – but watch the whole 23 minutes if you can.)

Fifthly – Happy Summer Solstice! The Solstice officially happens at 6:34 PM when the Sun moves into the sign of  Cancer. As the longest day of the year, with more hours of sunlight than any other, most of us wait all year for this special day. It’s the FUN time of year! But as I mentioned previously, this Sagittarius Full Moon occurs at 29 degrees. The 29th degree of any sign is known as a “critical degree” or the “anaretic degree” meaning we’re coming to the end of one way of being and moving into another – a complete change of direction. Sometimes that change feels fated, or out of our control, but the change needs to happen. So as you’re soaking in the sun, soak in the meaning of this Full Moon as you think about your Summer. How will you be changing directions? What is your highest calling? Toward what direction will you be shooting your arrow of intent, and where will you be seeking meaning and purpose? This bright moon, this enlightened moment, is the perfect time to answer these questions.

P.S. It’s interesting to have a Full Moon in Sagittarius – the sign connected with the Winter Solstice – the shortest day of the year – on the longest day of the year! Here we are in the fullness of Summer with the Sun at it’s highest point (in the Northern Hemisphere), while the emotional energy around us is reminiscent of the shortest. Hhhhhhmmmmm. That just occurred to me – not quite sure what to do with it yet, but I’m thinking.

Chart for the Full Moon in Sagittarius - 7:02 AM, June 20, 2016 Eastern Daylight Time

Chart for the Full Moon in Sagittarius – 7:02 AM, June 20, 2016 Eastern Daylight Time

 

Want some personal one-on-one help with navigating this Full Moon? Wondering where in your life and your psyche you’re being impacted? I’m happy to help! Please simply fill in the Client Info Form here, and we can set up an Individual Session. Looking forward to it! 

Astrology for Thursday, June 9, 2016: Cosmic Life Ops

The-Birth-of-Venus-Botticelli

During the morning hours, due to an uncomfortable angle between the Moon and Pluto (quincunx), there could be some adjustments that must be made in an emotional situation… the need to control something could be pretty strong, but look deeply at your motivations and see where you can shift a little to create a more comfortable atmosphere. As we move into the afternoon there are some super pleasant energies available today via Venus and the Sun in Gemini being intimately close (conjunction – we can see this as the beginning of the birth of Venus as she transitions into her new phase as the evening star), and the Moon reaching out to both of them (sextile) from Leo for possible social time with an intellectual bent – or maybe just a gossipy one. 🙂 These combinations create an emphasis on our vitality being impacted by beauty and relationship, our values coming to the fore in a prominent role, and connecting with others emotionally for companionable or even playful gatherings. There could be some creative tension possible with Mercury (the way we communicate) in Taurus moving into opposition with Mars (the way we take action to get what we want) in Scorpio, but the key is to be willing to go deeply into an issue without manipulating your opponent or refusing to budge in an opinion. Allow your peers and companions time to process rather than pushing for resolution. During the evening things may get a little more exciting – and whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing will mostly depend on how willing you are to let go and flow. The Moon will contact Uranus (trine), with Venus heading toward a connection with him as well (sextile), so be prepared to step outside the norm so that you can move with this often unusual and fluctuating energy. And make it fun! If your schedule unexpectedly shifts outside your comfort zone, move with the current and see where you land. It could be eye opening!

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Mercury is Definitely Retrograde…

Mercury-Statue

As most of you know, Mercury is definitely Retrograde.

The Retrograde was initiated this past Thursday with Mercury in Pisces in a tight connection to Neptune... some challenging areas to be aware of during this period of time are self-delusion, understanding what you want to understand rather than what is actually being communicated, excessive sensitivity, and feeling victimized. Areas of strength to operate within are your spiritual practice, allowing your imagination free reign, and connecting to your intuition and your sense of empathy and compassion.

As Mercury moves back into Aquarius on the evening of Valentine’s Day, it will be opposite the Full Moon in Leo. Think about that for a second – the Full Moon in Leo will be trying to come to balance with a Retrograde Mercury. Hhhhhmmmmm. Add to the mix that the Sun, Moon and Mercury are all connecting to Saturn (in a challenging configuration) and to Mars (easy flow) and you get a bit of a interesting mix of energies. My take is that we could get a little fixed in our attitudes and perhaps come up against that same emotional mindset in someone else… perhaps with a few fireworks. The point though may be to illuminate somewhere you’ve been stuck and, one way or another, help you out of it.

For those born between 1957 and early 1962, this Mercury Retrograde is going to transit across your natal Chiron – or get very close to it. If you know the house of your natal Chiron (it’s going to be in late Aquarius or early Pisces) that will help you navigate. Look to that house and how it’s aspected to other natal planets for areas due a bit of mending and restoring.

Wherever Chiron is, it’s to do with your karmic wound – and this Mercury Retrograde trigger could bring stuff up around that wound – maybe offering opportunities to talk about it, heal it, review it – or provide you with chances to help someone else with their wounds. When these issues come up, don’t flinch and push them back down. The beauty of Mercury R is that really fantastic material can arise from the deep psyche and the unconscious self. Take advantage of that.

Remember that Mercury Retrograde is a time for the “1-step back” part of the natural “2-steps forward, 1-step back” process… so take the time to review, reflect, and refine what you’ve already put in motion rather than being in hot pursuit of something entirely new.

Relax! This is nature’s gift telling you to slow down and engage in your internal navigation… there’ll be time for pushing forward again soon!

THE STATS: This particular Retrograde began Thursday, Feb 6, 2014 with Mercury at 3 degrees of Pisces and will run through Fri. Feb. 28, 2014 with Mercury going back to 18 degrees of Aquarius. The shadow period, that 16 to 21 day period after the Retrograde when Mercury is making its way back to the point where it first started its backwards trek, ends on March 21, 2014.

It’s that time again – Mercury Retrograde in Scorpio, Oct. 21 – Nov. 10, 2013

Mercury-Retrograde-Samhain-Halloween

Just a reminder that Mercury has been slowing down over the past few weeks and stationed (meaning he appears to have stopped) at 18 degrees of Scorpio on Friday, Oct. 18, and will turn Retrograde on Oct. 21. He will be Retrograde until Nov. 10, reaching back to 2 degrees of Scorpio. (Read the article Mercury Retrograde: The Unlikely Healing Gift here for an in-depth look at the meaning of this phenomenon in general, a bit of Mercury mythology, and how to navigate the Retrograde with better ease and understanding.)

If you’ve been feeling, like I have, that it seems Mercury Retrograde has already been happening for a while, remember that there are two shadow periods during every Retrograde phase. The pre-shadow that occurs for about 2 weeks when things feel as though they’re slowing down prior to the actual Retrograde and when, if you pay close attention, you are getting clues as to how a particular Retrograde period will impact you; and the post-shadow that occurs for about 3 weeks afterwards, when things are picking back up, but you are still integrating and seeking resolution. So really, the entire Mercury Retrograde phase takes about 8 weeks.

Mercury-Retrograde-diagram-of-movementOur typically fleet footed planet appears to slow down, stop, and then turn and trudge in the opposite direction once every 4 months. This phenomenon occurs when Mercury is at his greatest distance from the Sun (when he appears as the Evening or Morning Star), and then turns back toward the Earth, appearing to us as though he’s going backwards. It’s as though Mercury is conferring with the Sun who gives him information to bring back to Earth for the use of us mere mortals – thus Mercury’s ancient reputation as the Messenger of the Gods. 

If you know your birthchart, look to the house that contains Scorpio, and to any planets in that house to gain understanding of how this particular Retrograde period will impact you. Also look to any planets in your birthchart that fall between 2 and 18 degrees and find what sort of angle (the geometric distance between) this Mercury in Scorpio is making to them. This will give you further insights.

Folks born between 1956 and 1970 all have Neptune in Scorpio. If you were born between late 1956 and late 1966 your Neptune is somewhere between 0 and 22 degrees of Scorpio, meaning that it is in range of being impacted by this particular Mercury Retrograde. If your natal Neptune is also in aspect to (having a significant geometric distance between) any of your natal personal planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars), then this Mercury Retrograde period could be a significant one for you. 

Mercury Retrograde in Scorpio brings our inner attention to probing topics like sexuality, long-standing emotional issues, death and dying, our deepest psychological fears, profound shamanic healing and making the unconscious conscious. The tendency and purpose is to thin the veil between our typical movement away from these somewhat taboo areas of life and bring them into greater awareness – and ultimately greater integration. Mercury Retrograde in Scorpio can help us heal our Shadow. (What more perfect energy could be afoot for Samhain / Halloween / All Saints Day when the veil between the living and dead is reportedly thin, allowing connection between the two worlds!)

Mercury connected to Neptune (just for those late forties and fifty-somethings among us that I mentioned earlier) is a complex combination of energies. On the one hand Mercury and Neptune combined can bring up visionary experiences, loosen the imagination, prompt us to express our dreams and give voice to the images that arise from our Souls. On the other hand we can feel muddled in our thinking, express ourselves chaotically, or tune in to our fondest modes of escape – which can translate into a Mercury Retrograde double whammy. Watch for your tendencies, one way or the other, but understand that you have the choice of which way to direct yourself.

If you’d like help figuring this Mercury Retrograde phase out in your own life, please contact me ASAP for a Mercury Retrograde consult by emailing astrology@michellegregg.com. It will only set you back $25. Mayhem possible during Mercury Retrograde = frustration and anxiety. Navigating Mercury Retrograde with confidence = priceless. 🙂

As of Today, Nov. 26, 2012, Mercury is Retrograde No More… At Least for the Next 3 Months!

I’m delighted to let you know that Mercury is going Direct in Scorpio today as of 5:48 PM Eastern Time. I can hear you shouting “Yay!!” as you jump up and down… No more Mercury Retrograde until February 23, 2013! I’m saying that just as a reminder that Mercury turning Retrograde is a very regular cycle in our lives that occurs every 3 months – 4 times a year – and it stays Retrograde 3 weeks each time. This is an example of the natural inhale and exhale, ebb and flow of life – of two steps forward, one step back, of needing rest after forward motion. Learning to move gracefully and fully engaged with that cycle is a terrific goal to have. (See my article “Mercury Retrograde: The Unlikely Healing Gift” for insights on that.)

This Mercury Retrograde for me has actually been quite smooth and fruitful… perhaps that’s the result of consciously working in accordance with the energy, or maybe, I’ve just been lucky this past 3 weeks. Trust me – I’ve had my share of truly DOOZIE Mercury Retrogrades! Whatever the reason for the ease of this one, I’m looking forward to the next 3 months as Mercury moves forward to see what will bloom fresh and new in my mind and how I will determine to express it to others.

Time-lapse image showing Retrograde motion in space.

Bear in mind that we will be in the “shadow” of Mercury Retrograde until Dec. 14. This simply means that Mercury goes back over the same degrees of the Zodiac it covered while it was going backwards, until it ends up where it started. During this time, the next 19 days, you might expect whatever came up during the Retrograde to resurface. (For this kind of retrospective, it’s helpful to know what degrees of Scorpio and Sagittarius the Retrograde covered – it began at 4 degrees of Sagittarius and moved back to 18 degrees of Scorpio – and where those degrees are in your birth chart – and what days over the past 3 weeks specific things happened. Always helpful to keep a journal for things like this so you can look back and find patterns or witness lessons learned or simply life experienced.)

I love watching annual trends with these kinds of Cosmic escapades. Last year, 2011, Mercury went Retrograde on Thanksgiving Day. This year, 2012, on Thanksgiving we were in the throes of Mercury Retrograde – just a few days before the end of it. And next year Mercury Retrograde will be over almost 2 weeks before Thanksgiving. But we’ll have a Retrograde Halloween! That sounds like the perfect time to communicate (Mercury) with those already gone before us (Retrograde).

Have fun in your forward journey all!

 

NOTE: Here’s a wonderful video that shows Mercury Retrograde motion astronomically – a space view of how we see Mercury Retrograde. Fabulous!

From the YouTube Video explanation:

Please watch in Full screen HD-mode! This animation shows from GEOCENTRIC point of view (Earth’ observer) how the innermost planet Mercury moves on its small orbit direct, than suddenly appears to move retrograde (backwards) and turns direct again. The red grid marks the ecliptical plane, in which the Sun and most planets move more or less. The figures indicate the 30° intersection of the ecliptical grid, so 0° longitude is the beginning at the vernal equinox = 0° Aries, Every further 30° step is the next astrological (tropical) sign of the zodiac, so e.g. 30°-60° = Taurus, 60°-90° = Gemini and so on. The movement for Mercury is shown for 2009 and 2010 covering two of its retrograde periods, which take about three weeks and occur four times every Earth year. Mercury’s orbit is shown in orange colour (ellipse). The panel on the left corner is in German and displays the calendar date of the animation. The timestep is 1 day per trail and computation. This is how the apparent retrograde motion of planets actually appears and happens. Stars and other planets are excluded in this animation. The animation was generated with Redshift 7 Premium by USM Media. More explanations will be inserted into the animation soon.