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Meanwhile, here is the introduction to get you started:

As July begins, Venus has just turned direct and is moving forward again after her short retrograde period. The Transit of Venus is behind us, as is the first exact formation of the Uranus/Pluto square which actually began last year and will continue through 2014.

You can read more about the square formation between Uranus and Pluto here if this is new to you. The two planets are still only 17 minutes of arc from the exact alignment, and it will be the middle of July before they really begin to separate. So throughout the first few weeks of July expect for this conflict between the structures of the past (Pluto in Capricorn) and the new ideas and patterns of individual self-expression (Uranus in Aries) to continue, especially between the 11th and 22nd or so when Mars enters the picture and acts as a trigger for the unexpected to occur. More on that in the planetary details below.

The Uranus/Pluto dynamic is intensified by the fact that Uranus will turn retrograde mid-month so its motion has slowed to a standstill in preparation for the change of direction. When a planet changes direction its influence becomes more insistent, and with Uranus we are dealing with energies of surprise, radical changes and a journey into the unknown. Pluto is also retrograde now so both of these behemoths are urging us to look back over our lives to see where we have stalled the progress of our own evolution – where do we need to break free (Uranus), what do we need to let go of (Pluto).

Mercury will also turn retrograde this month, creating the usual communication snafus but providing us with opportunities to go back and perfect areas in our communication that have been lacking. Mercury retrograde is excellent for writers and is a good time to purge and release small reminders of the past that we can’t take into our future.

Throughout July we have a severe shortage of the earth element. Mars is just finishing its long journey through Virgo and once it moves into Libra on July 3rd there will be no planet in an earth sign other than Pluto. Earth is the element that provides stability and offers comfort and security. It will be difficult to ground the tremendous amount of energy that the Uranus/Pluto square is creating, so we will have to create and participate in our own grounding rituals. Spending time in the outdoors, gardening, communing with nature, and with our own body – all of these things will help us to counterbalance the lack of earth in the skies.

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