Over the past six months we have been in a heavy retrograde period but recently Pluto, Chiron and then Neptune changed direction so that now only Mercury and Uranus are in retrograde motion (appearing to move backwards from our perspective on earth). At one point this past summer six planets were retrograde, making it difficult to move forward with our plans and visions; we are now prepared to make those changes. However, we may be somewhat stifled in our efforts until November 18 when Mercury turns direct and moves forward again. All in all, though, November gives us a breath of fresh air after the challenging year behind us.
The opposition between Saturn and Neptune is widening now and diminishing in power until it returns in February of next year. (you may want to read this article which more completely describes the Saturn/Neptune cycle which began in August) Saturn desires to create form and Neptune urges us to dissolve into the ocean of pure consciousness, and the opposition between these two planets can be destabilizing. During Saturn/Neptune periods we are forced (Saturn) to relinquish our illusions and fantasies (Neptune), but we may also find ourselves better able to manifest our spiritual yearning (Neptune) into a day-to-day practice (Saturn). We have completed just the first phase of the cycle, and those of us with planets in the fixed signs (Aquarius, Leo, Taurus, Scorpio) will be most subject to its influence.
Saturn is also approaching a trine to Pluto, the god of the underworld and power, which will not awaken fully until next year. The harmonious interaction between the two Lords of Darkness is a powerful ally, aligning the discipline and grounding of Saturn with the transformative power of Pluto, and we are beginning to sense this influence. We typically don’t notice the harmonious transits as much as the more difficult ones; trines sometimes provide opportunity that is never activated. Understanding that the power of transformation is available now will help us to use it for practical purposes. This is a time when the setting of intention can be a powerful tool for growth.
During the first week of November Mercury (the mind) is retrograding away from a conjunction to Jupiter (expansion and opportunity) that will be in effect throughout the week, adding a buoyancy and optimism to our thought process and communication. At the same time, Mercury and Jupiter are both square to Saturn, the planet that forces us to face reality and apply discipline to our endeavors. Jupiter is King of the Gods, and while it brings confidence and opportunity, in a hard angle aspect like the square it tends to overextend itself with a reckless abandon. In conjunction to Mercury we may find ourselves more argumentative than usual, or facing more arguments from others. The square to Saturn will apply a brake to our confidence level and perhaps force us to work a little harder towards the perfection of our endeavors.
For the first two weeks of November, the Sun and Venus dance in conjunction and bestow favor on interpersonal relationships and social events. The pair are trine to Uranus, god of the unexpected, bringing new people into our lives and breathing new life into relationships that have become stale.