Monday, November 28, 2011

Mercury Retrograde: November 24th Through December 13th

Mercury, messenger of the gods, travels around the sun creating cycle after cycle of predictable energy that we can learn to understand and even work with as we plan our projects and communications and deal with our everyday reality. While Mercury is direct, we are more inclined to project our thoughts and energies outwardly in order to accomplish all of the everyday things that keep our lives moving forward. Like all of the planets, Mercury has a clear and predictable cycle and can therefore provide us with important information about our everyday reality.

Mercury appears to move backward periodically for approximately 3.5 weeks. In astrology Mercury is defined as the planet we associate with thinking, communicating and processing information through the brain and nervous system. It rules everyday communications and travel. It is associated with the signs of Gemini and Virgo. During the retrograde period of Mercury things tend to break down and all sorts of communication problems arise.

The message is to go with the flow, keep impatience in check and see what the cycle is trying to teach you. Rather than pushing forward, it is a time of reflection, introspection and possible reworking that which is not quite ready to be put out there. We live in a world of immediate gratification so when retrograde, the frustrations tend to build up as we try to make things happen. Mercury retrograde teaches us to be more cautious, take a closer look at our projects and ideas and be patient while we take the time to reflect and reevaluate our lives.

In the area of contracts, it is very important to be especially cautious while Mercury is retrograde. Be sure to review all documents carefully and make sure you fully understand what you are committing to. Major purchases are also often best left for after the retrograde period because this is the time for all of us to pull our energies inward and reflect on where we have been and where we are going. Appointments may need rescheduling as the everyday world sputters along. Think in terms of spiritual growth rather than getting mundane matters done.

Another common manifestation of Mercury retrograde is the reemergence of the unfinished business of the past. Sometimes people we haven’t heard from in years will contact us or if we have been procrastinating and not completing important matters, we might experience a real urgency to get these things accomplished.

We might begin to experience the effects of retrograde Mercury several days before it actually “turns”. Some sage advice: If anything needs to be repaired and you have been putting it off, Mercury retrograde could force repairs. Cars, computers and other everyday household items are at risk and frustrations can mount. The best advice during this relatively short period of time is to relax, take things more slowly and create the space in your life for deep reflection.

As the next 3 weeks unfold, remember to take a deep breath when frustrations mount and remind yourself that this too shall pass. As Mercury directs, it takes another 2 weeks or so for the planet to move into new zodiacal territory. So, by January 1, 2012, Mercury will be at 20 degrees of Sagittarius which is where it was when it went retrograde on November 24, 2011. This actually completes the old cycle and begins a new one. In my daily scheduling calendar, I mark the Mercury retrograde periods and when the planet reaches new ground in order to remind myself to go with the flow. This little exercise has always served me well.

People born with Mercury retrograde will experience these times as more comforting and natural.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Full Moon November 10, 2011

This month’s full moon is in the sign of Taurus, a fixed earth sign. There is always great potential for awareness and some clarity during a full moon and whatever began at the new moon on October 26th can now be developed or processed with more persistence and determination for fixed signs offer those qualities to all of us. The real beauty of the lunar cycle is that it is so repetitive. Each month, each new moon, offers a new opportunity to grow just as each new day offers a new beginning. In astrology, we can find many new beginnings as we study the cyclic nature of our planets as they revolve around our sun and symbolically around our natal charts.

This full moon stands by itself in some ways as there are no close aspects to it. We truly can attempt to gain clarity about emotional issues and look at the tendencies we have to get stuck and hold onto old feelings and patterns of behavior. When the moon is full it is reflecting as much of the solar light as it possibly can so look deeply into your depths and explore how you manifest your energy to create your physical world. We are still dealing with the intense sign of Scorpio but the moon in the opposite sign of Taurus helps us to ground that intensity with something tangible.

Mars in the final degree of Leo has moved into a direct opposition with Neptune and is now beginning to move past that opposition. As it does, it will move into the mutable earth sign of Virgo and begin to form a grand trine to Jupiter in Taurus and Pluto in Capricorn. Any confusion that has been felt regarding taking action on your life may now begin to clear up. It is a very positive time for creating something real from the clarity that can come with this energy. Grand trines can also make us more laid back and because this is an earth grand trine, more physically lazy. For a while this energy will allow healing to take place if we tap into the spiritual reality of who we are. Mars implies the need to act on things and grand trines are not very motivating but any action at all will yield results now. Those with planets in earth signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn), especially planets in the early degrees of earth signs, will find this energy most beneficial.

Mars trine Jupiter encourages taking action that expands the current situation while trining Pluto at the same time demands deep and intense acceptance of what is. There can finally be a rising above it all in order to come to terms with whatever was creating confusion and disillusionment (Neptune). Do something concrete with this energy and share it with others while this grand trine is active. As Mercury turns retrograde on November 24th, things will shift once again and this lunar cycle will complete on the 25th just in time for Mercury to do its thing. I will discuss that in depth in my next blog at the next new moon.

Mercury and Venus have been hanging onto a conjunction since the new moon of October 26th and are now in the mutable fire sign of Sagittarius. As Mercury slows down, preparing for its retrograde period, Venus moves past the conjunction. Generally a conjunction of these two planets is short lived, a day or two so this longer period can be seen as a time that began with intensity in Scorpio and opened up through a generous spirit of communicating love and caring these past two weeks.

Saturn, the task master, is moving toward a trine to Neptune. This will become more exact as this year ends and a new year begins. A trine of these planets offers us all the opportunity to marry our spiritual tendencies with our physical reality. Helping those in need and contributing our resources, whether physical or spiritual is a great way to allow this energy expression. More on this as well when it becomes more exact.

Finally, I would like to share a paragraph of information I came across while re-reading one my favorite astrology books. It is some food for thought as we open up to what the world is going through during this time as Pluto moves through Capricorn.

Pluto in Capricorn (Approximately from 1764 to 1778)

Capricorn refers to the establishment of large scale social schemes and political institutions, but also to their crystallization, which Pluto confronts and often radically upsets. The United States of America began its career under such a Pluto transit, which challenged the rights of the English king, particularly in matters of financial policy. Pluto is in the second house of the US chart with mid Sagittarius rising, a highly significant position as the new nation found in the land of its birth tremendous resources which it ruthlessly and relentlessly tapped and indeed misused because of corporate greed and personal ambition. In France the monarchy was crumbling because of a variety of scandals. Pluto often tends to bring into the open the shadow of political power or personal ambition. It forces any entrenched group to surrender its privilege or else to face revolution or moral-spiritual bankruptcy. It seems probable that Pluto had recently entered Capricorn when Luther challenged the powerfully entrenched Catholic Church.

The Galactic Dimension of Astrology: The Sun is Also a Star by Dane Rudhyar
Pages 95-96. First Edition published 1975 under the title The Sun is Also a Star.
In light of the revolutions and financial challenges around the globe in the past few years, since Pluto once again entered Capricorn, I thought this quote was extremely interesting. We can take a closer look at the chart of the USA in future blogs.