Am I the only one who has had a miserable time over the past three weeks? I’m usually pretty good at navigating through Mercury retrograde periods, but this one really did wreak havoc in many areas of my life. I can’t count the number of appointments that I either didn’t enter into the calendar or put in the wrong place. Confusion in communication was rampant, including changing my mind and redoing certain things over and over.
All of this was made worse by the fact that Mercury (communication) aligned with Mars (passion and anger) at the eclipse degree, at the end of August. Any issues that came up at the time of eclipse continued to erupt at that time.
Richard Nolle is a brilliant astrologer who first coined the term “Supermoon” for a lunation (Full or New Moon) that is closest to the earth. Another one of his ideas is that of “Mercury Max” – the period of greatest elongation between Mercury and the Sun. According to Richard, the Mercury Max period ”
begins when evening star Mercury reaches its maximum elongation (greatest distance) east of the Sun; extends through the Mercury retrograde and the inferior Sun-Mercury conjunction, and ends when the little planet as morning star reaches its maximum elongation west of the Sun.
If like me this technical language is difficult to comprehend, the important thing to note is that these cycles occur four times a year in concert with the Mercury retrograde cycles. The current Mercury Max cycle according to Richard began on July 30th and continued all the way through August, ending around September […]
You’ll be reading a lot about Pluto in these pages in the next months because I’m just entering a cycle of Pluto to an important system in my chart (geeky astrological details: to my Sun/Saturn/Neptune conjunction which squares Uranus). Pluto was discovered in 1930 and is associated with psychology and the understanding of our hidden motivations and the mental and emotional factors that underlie our actions.
Pluto, of course, was the Lord of the Underworld. In psychological astrology he represents the Underworld of the psyche – the secrets that we hide from others and from ourselves, the dim recesses of the mind where our darkest emotions are tucked away. In transformational astrology I consider Pluto to act as the “Will of the Higher Self” – the part of us that encourages us to transform our secret darkness into an awakened Self through wisdom and understanding.
If we look to the mythological history of Pluto (or Hades as he was called in ancient Greece) we find that Hades was closely identified with Ploutos, the god of wealth and agricultural bounty. Hades himself was a god of the hidden wealth from under the earth such as precious metals and gems, as well as being the protector and defender of the dead.
We often think of Pluto as being a ruthless Lord of Death and destruction, but this early association of Pluto/Hades with protecting the dead reveals a secret to the Pluto archetype that we don’t often consider – Pluto’s real role is to facilitate our personal evolution if we allow it to. Under Pluto’s influence we find ourselves facing life in a far more intense way than might be comfortable, but it’s all for the sake […]
There are some planetary cycles that visit all of us at around the same time of our lives. Many of you are familiar with the Saturn Return, the first one of which occurs around age 28-30 and brings with it the call of responsibility, Saturn’s baileywick. The outer planets, being farther away from the Sun, have bigger cycles. Uranus, for example, takes 84 years to orbit the Sun to the Uranus return occurs at around age 84.
The outer planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) inspire us to transform our lives – they don’t dabble in the personal realm like the traditional planets do. Uranus cycles (the opening square at age 21-22, the opposition at age 41-42, the closing square at 61-63 and the return at age 84) always ask this question: What are you doing with your life, and does it reflect your authentic self?
In my own life I’ve had a lot going on the past few years. Typical Second Saturn Return stuff: My mother’s illness and death, having to trademark my blog after a threat of a lawsuit from a Big Portal Site, rebuilding the blog, challenges with my work team, three house renovations and cleaning out my mother’s house, the death of my beloved dog, my husband’s retirement, a new dog, the illness and death of my sister’s husband… all typical things that happen in a person’s life, but packed into a small amount of time.
The Uranus square follows the Saturn Return and suddenly I’m looking at my life and everything I have manifested over the past 20 years, since the last Uranus cycle, and trying to get clear about what is really important and feels right, and what I am just doing out of habit.
In my […]
As an astrologer, I see the world through the astrological lens and wanted to share that viewpoint with whoever happened to stop by and visit. At the same time I wanted to demonstrate to a larger audience that astrology is more than so-called “horoscopes” and sun signs. Over the years so many people have told me that it was my blog that started their path of astrological study, and I can’t tell you how gratifying that is.
For seven or eight years I managed to post nearly every single day – finding interesting news pieces or philosophical ideas to frame within the astrological lens. Over the past couple of years I have had a more difficult time keeping up the inspiration for that daily writing, and this year for the first time I took long breaks between posts. I attribute much of this to the fact that I am in the middle of a Very Big Uranus Transit, the kind that happens only every 21 years or so. It was during the last Very Big Uranus Transit in 1992-3 when I first started writing my monthly planetary column which I then called Skywatch and which is now posted as Planetary Illuminations. At the time a monthly astrology column which was not a sun sign horoscope column was pretty rare.
Uranus urges us to break free of routines that no longer work for us, and under his influence (he has been virtually stationary sitting right on an already Uranian system in my chart since May and will be there through March) I have been reassessing […]
Some of you may be wondering where I have been, and in fact I have wondered that myself. I am in the middle of a Very Big Uranus Transit in which the planet of rebellion and the destroyer of all that is rigid and feels like obligation is sitting right on an important system in my chart. (Geeky astrological details: I have a triple conjunction in Libra of Saturn, Sun and Neptune which is squared by Uranus in Cancer.)
The Uranus cycle tends to be associated with major changes in a person’s life. The first one, the square (90 degree) aspect from Uranus in the sky to Uranus in the chart, occurs around age 20-22 in tandem with the closing square of Saturn in the sky to Saturn in the chart. This is usually a time of chaos in a young person’s life during which they may dramatically shift the course their life has been taking up until that time. Saturn puts pressure on the individual to get serious about their life, and at the same time Uranus is urging rebellion and a breaking away of anything that feels restrictive. No wonder it’s such a challenging time!
The second phase in the cycle is the classic midlife crisis transit at age 40-42, the Uranus Opposition, which occurs in tandem with the square of transiting Neptune to natal Neptune. During this cycle the urge to break out of routine (Uranus) is complicated by the confusion and delusion that is imposed by Neptune in an effort to inspire transcendence and a yearning for a more inward and spiritual life course.
The third phase in the cycle occurs […]