Planetary cycles

Venus retrograde – the significance of 40 days and 40 nights

40 days venus retrogradeVenus turns retrograde only every two years or so which makes it one of the more rare astrological events (the outer planets retrograde every year and Mercury retrogrades four times a year).  When a planet is retrograde, meaning it APPEARS to be moving backwards from our perspective on earth, its influence tends to be more hidden and we generally are urged to look backwards and rectify matters from the past.

 makes an interesting point – that the 40 days and 40 nights of the Venus retro period corresponds to the 40 days and 40 nights that Jesus traveled in the wilderness.

Forty is mentioned in the bible often, but most famously when Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness for forty days. Could this be referring to the astrological phenomena of Venus retrograde? After all, Venus has two sides to her. She is the goddess of love and war according to the Babylonians. The word Lucifer (which is often confused with Satan) means light-bringer and refers to Venus in her morning star phase. The ancients said the first few days of her Lucifer phase was a particularly dangerous time. People born with Venus as a morning star are said to rush headlong into love affairs and are very passionate. Venus as an evening star is has more of the receptive, traditional meaning.

You might also be interested  in this earlier article I wrote about the two sides of Venus, and in this article about Lucifer as Venus, the Light Bringer.

I became curious about the significance of 40 days and 40 nights, because before Jesus was tempted in the wilderness for this length of time rain fell on Noah for 40 days […]

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By |2018-10-06T10:03:24-04:00October 5th, 2014|Planetary cycles, Religion|8 Comments

August astrological forecast – Planetary Illuminations – now posted

August horoscopes 2014The full report is posted here at this link, and if you’re on my mailing list you will soon be receiving my easy to understand abridged version.  You can sign up in the sidebar if you’d like to be added to my list!

Meanwhile, here is the introduction to the month along with details about the first week in August.  Enjoy!


As August begins, Mars has just entered Scorpio. In Scorpio, traditionally ruled by Mars, the aggressive force of Mars is permitted virtually free reign. We can view this as an opportunity for true self-expression – if we run in fear of that unbridled potency the energy tends to build rather than dissipate. So harnessing it and utilizing it by attuning to our inner Will can be very helpful in this process.

The final phase of the harmonious trine from Saturn to Chiron peaks on August 5th. This positive interaction between the Teacher (Saturn) and the Healer (Chiron) has helped to pave the way towards greater understanding in the midst of adversity. The energy of this dynamic will be available through the 15th or so, making this a wonderful time for introspection and energy work and yoga and all other modalities which help us to feel better integrated and release old wounds of the past.

The elemental balance is heavily skewed right now towards fire and water, with virtually no planets in earth signs (other than Pluto in Capricorn). This will shift around the 15th when Mercury moves into Virgo, followed shortly thereafter by the Sun. Until then, grounding may require more conscious effort but the creative juices of fire […]

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By |2018-06-11T11:59:29-04:00August 2nd, 2014|Planetary cycles|0 Comments

Mars in Scorpio, 2014

Art by Artemesia Dark

Mars went into Scorpio just before the New Moon, and will remain in Scorpio until mid-September.

Mars is the traditional ruler of Scorpio (as well as Aries), and when Pluto was discovered it was assigned as co-ruler of Scorpio.  Mars is the planet of war, and its dominion is aggression, passion, drive and desire.  For that reason it rules the pure physical desire of sexuality.  In Scorpio, it takes on an added emotional depth and intensity and a desire that is transformed from the purely physical to an intense need to lose oneself and become transformed in the process.  Like the Phoenix which is one of Scorpio’s symbols, the fire becomes so focused and burns so powerfully that we are turned to dust, and emerge anew from the rubble.

I consider Pluto to be the “higher octave” of Mars – where Mars rules the expression of the individual Will, Pluto acts as the will of the higher self – guiding and creating transformation in spite of what our own personal desires may be.  Usually after an intense Pluto transit we recognize that the changes that occurred during that time were really for our benefit and probably not something that we would have chosen for ourselves.  Like when we are fired from a job and then realize we were miserable and that freed us to find something better.  Or when we have a terrible accident and discover a great gift or talent as a result.

Scorpio is passionate and intense and has little patience for superficiality.  As a water sign it is concerned with the realm of feelings, but the fire of Mars adds the passion and ability to cut through fear […]

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By |2014-07-30T13:17:38-04:00July 30th, 2014|Planetary cycles|1 Comment

More reader advice: the Pluto square Pluto transit

Pluto square plutoLynn, per your recent post you wrote: “Pluto transits can be devastating periods of loss, but they can also be times when we discover our latent strengths and emerge into great periods of personal power as we see here.” I currently am experiencing Pluto conjunct my Ascendant and Pluto square Pluto transits, both lasting through about the end of this year. I just entered into a major dispute with a colleague that may turn into a legal battle. What should I look at in my chart for signs of where things are headed?

Pluto transits are some of the most intense experiences possible for a human being.  When we are in the middle of them we sometimes feel that everything in our life is being ripped from us and that our foundations are being stripped away.  But at its core, Pluto is about empowerment – Pluto’s role is to help – ok yes, to force – us to let go of anything in our life that is not functioning so that we can emerge as truer versions of ourselves.

For this reader, Pluto squares the Capricorn Ascendant.  This alone tells us that she is on a journey of  transformation – of letting go of previous versions of herself and emerging anew.  The Ascendant represents our very persona and the way in which we live our life, and Pluto in a strong square (90 degrees) configuration to the ascendant suggests that she may struggle with issues of power and control.   The Capricorn Ascendant is well suited for Pluto contacts because there is a willingness to work hard and embrace whatever challenges are thrown her way.  She also has a Scorpio Moon, which is ruled by Pluto, so she is […]

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By |2018-11-27T16:48:30-04:00July 21st, 2014|Life, Planetary cycles|2 Comments

Jupiter in Leo, July 16 2014 to August 11 2015

Jupiter in LeoJupiter is the biggest planet in our natural solar system, and it radiates more energy than any other planet except for the Sun.  Mythological Jupiter was the King of the Gods.  With these bigger than life qualities, Jupiter’s role is to expand our sense of what is possible in our ordinary lives by removing fears and limitations and instilling faith and trust in the Universe.  Jupiter is associated with the mental constructs that we develop which give our life a sense of meaning, such as religious or political philosophies, and it is generally seen as a “lucky” planet that brings opportunities and greater confidence.

Jupiter takes about twelve months to travel through a sign, and Jupiter now leaves the emotional sign of Cancer for fiery Leo. In Cancer Jupiter was focused on emotional security and security of the family or “tribe” – the realm of feeling has been highlighted and the sense of righteousness that Jupiter can demonstrate has been emotionally based and less reasonable than it was previously when Jupiter traveled through Gemini, an air sign of ideas.  Now Jupiter moves into the fire element where passion prevails.

The transition from Cancer to Leo takes us from a quiet expression of life to a more buoyant and almost explosive interest in experiences that will allow us to expand and grow in our sense of enjoyment of life.  Leo at its core is represented by the archetype of the Divine Child – the innocence and beauty of the Ego in its pure and unadulterated form.  Many of our spiritual philosophies and religions denigrate the Ego as something to be rejected (a Pisces/Neptune concept), but a healthy human experience requires that we develop and maintain a strong sense […]

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By |2018-06-11T11:25:23-04:00July 19th, 2014|Planetary cycles|2 Comments
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