FROM THE CANCER SOLSTICE TO THE LIBRA EQUINOX
Welcome to my thoughts for this opening Solstice season, June to September 2011. Numerous eclipses constellate this period, while new sets of cosmic relationships are also emerging.
The planets in a nutshell: Jupiter enters Taurus on June 4; Saturn is still transiting Libra, turning direct on June 13; Uranus is powering ahead in Aries, turning retrograde on July 10; Chiron and Neptune are transiting Pisces, but Neptune will be there only until August 5, when he will cross back into Aquarius, remaining in this Sign until February 2012.
Jupiter, from Fiery Aries to Earthy Taurus
Jupiter moves into a new Sign every year. This shift is said to colour the philosophical/religious attitudes of the time and of the people born during this time, thus also generating future trends when these people will be old enough to have an impact on collective attitudes.
Earth always follows Fire in the organic sequence of the Zodiac. What this particular shift reveals is the collective need to ground (Earth) the ideals we have conceived previously (Fire). We now need to transform the ideals into practically achievable goals. And there is more: Jupiter here is also moving from a Cardinal Sign (active, energetic, initiating) to a Fixed Sign (static, conserving energy, stabilizing). This means that not only we need to ground our ideals, but also make them more secure, less liable to change and waver.
When Jupiter transits Taurus, Earth Fixed Sign, conservative views may prevail, because Taurus is conservative and unchanging by nature. This is not necessarily in the sense of bigotry and intolerance, but rather in the sense of respect toward traditions and tried and tested principles. This phase of Jupiter then ensures the conservation of what of the past we still consider valuable, its most basic legacy over which we want to build our future. Fixing our collective ideals, even making them into dogmas at this time will ensure that they will not be lost. The continuity with the past will help to stabilize society, fostering a feeling of personal and collective security. During these troubled times Jupiter in Taurus will be in fact one of the main factors helping to keep society together.
All it is well when positive and forward looking ideals become part of our human heritage, via Jupiter in Taurus, because this Sign will help to solidify them and make them more permanent. Danger may lurk ahead however when backward looking ideals creep instead back into the collective psyche, creating a more intolerant and draconian mindset. This is our philosophical challenge in the coming months.
Jupiter has a lot to do also with global finance. His transit through Taurus can be read as a possible return to financial prosperity and ease. To lend credibility to this idea Jupiter will also form a harmonious aspect to Pluto in Capricorn, Lord of Riches, active, on an off, until April 2012. We cannot exaggerate however the influence of just one transit because the overall picture still points at difficulties and changes affecting all aspects of our social and political life. Jupiter will also turn retrograde at the end of August, and has not long ago separated from the opposition to Saturn in Libra, indicating that the global economic contraction will be on for a while longer. Taurus and the aspect to Pluto could help though, mitigating the effects of the financial crisis, assuring at least supplies of essentials, like food and shelter, to our planet’s people, Pluto lending the necessary resources.
In the three months between June and August the people who could feel in a big way the expansive and optimistic Jupiter’s effect will be Taurus (April19/30), Virgo (August22/September2), Capricorn (December21/31), Scorpio (October22/November 2), Leo (July22/August2), Aquarius (January19/29).
June and July Eclipses
This astrological period is also very much about Eclipses, three of the record six of 2011 occurring between June and July. To have this number of eclipses in a year is somewhat rare.
Because eclipses are considered as portals to greater awareness, this year and this season could bring awakening opportunities for a very great number of people, through personal breakthroughs as well as via the heightened impact of global events.
The first is a Partial Solar Eclipse, on June 1/2 (depending where you are in the world), visible only at high latitudes in the northern hemisphere, Iceland, the Scandinavian countries, North Alaska and North Canada. The transits around this eclipse do not look as dramatic as some we have had recently. Both Sun and Moon will be in fact in harmonious aspect to Saturn, a positive and constructive influence, especially considering that Saturn will soon turn direct (on June 13), always a cause for celebration, because our efforts may start to bear results. This eclipse will prove helpful to some Gemini (June1/3), Sagittarius (December2/4), Virgo (September2/4) and Pisces (February29/March2), or anyone with Moon, Ascendant or planets around the 11th degree of the above Signs. This could be an ideal time to consolidate your position in practical ways, building on your professional and personal security, making cautious but steady advances in your life. As all New Moons a Solar Eclipse represents the start of a new phase, this time not only for your month ahead but for a much longer period.
A Total Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius is expected for June 15/16. This is an important event, an eclipse of long duration (one hour and forty minutes), passing deeply through the Earth’s shadow, and thus meant to be more influential. It will be visible in its totality in Eastern Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, India and Western Australia. The Moon will be rising as she becomes eclipsed in South America, West Africa and Europe, and setting instead over East Asia and the eastern states of Australia. North America is cut off from the shadow and will not witness directly this eclipse.
Sun, Moon and Mercury are forming a 90 degrees angle to Ceres (Demeter) the largest asteroid orbiting between Mars and Jupiter. In the last few years I have tried to observe the position and aspects of Ceres at the time the Earth has been particularly challenged by natural and man-made disasters, and often found meaningful connections. Not surprising in view of the fact that Ceres is a symbol of the original Earth Mother, Goddess of the Harvest and first Mater Dolorosa, weeping Madonna of myths and religions, mourning the death of her child. This archetype is brought to light by the darkling eclipsed Full Moon, time for full emotional impact and deep realizations.
Mars is an important actor at this time, as it is transiting Taurus, a difficult terrain for this planet. Mars can in fact make the notorious wilfulness of this Earth Sign more fiery and dangerous. It will be even more so during this Lunar Eclipse, due to Mars’ conjunction to the head of Medusa (the star Algol), a troublesome encounter, inclining to power struggles and sometimes even bloodshed.
Mars in Taurus is said to sometimes function as a trigger for increased seismic and volcanic activity, if other more ponderous transits point in the same direction. Mars is also just separating from an aspect to Saturn, always a difficult bedfellow, and approaching a square to Neptune in early Pisces, the aspect is not as close, but still seems significant, because of the proximity to the time of the eclipse.
Due to the above considerations and to the eclipse’s totality this event could be more powerful than the other two solar eclipses.
The people whose birthday will be in direct alignment with this eclipse will be Sagittarius (December14/16), Gemini (June13/15), Virgo (September15/17) and Pisces (March13/15); or anyone with Moon, Ascendant and/or planets around the 24th degree of the same Signs.
The third eclipse of the season will be another Partial Solar, at the Cancer New Moon of July 1, visible only in very low South latitudes, near the Antarctic Circle.
Despite its limited range this is a special event, being the first eclipse in a new (defined by a Saros number) happening around the same degree of longitude at intervals of 18 years. The period inaugurated by this eclipse will last 1.226 years, until 3.237, and contain 69 Solar Eclipses!
Something important is beginning at this time, whose influence would be however unformed for now, not very well defined, with nonetheless significant implications for the future. For many years astrologers will look at this eclipse, trying to fathom its possible effect on each of the eclipses belonging to the same series. Great stuff!
If during the previous Solar Eclipse of June 1/2 the Sun and Moon formed a positive relationship with Saturn, here instead they are forming a difficult angle with the same planet.
This eclipse may have the effect of making people realize their limitations, stressing more what it is negative or lacking in their lives rather than what is positive and abundant (a negative Saturn’s effect). The sense of discouragement and pessimism could prove difficult to shake off for a while. On the positive side, as with the previous eclipse, all events involving Saturn are always helpful to find practical solutions to life problems.
The birthday people aligned to this Cancer Solar Eclipse are Cancer (June30/July2), Capricorn (December31/January2), Aries (March29/31) and Libra (October2 /4); as well as anyone with Moon, Ascendant or planets around the 9th degree of the above Signs.
Uranus in Aries begins its risque dance with Pluto in Capricorn, take cover or ride the wave, it is up to you.
Since March 12 Uranus in Aries has lend new impetus around the globe to radical and rapid reforms, even revolutions, as recent history has demonstrated. Via the same amazing energy Uranus’ ingress into Aries also coincided with the appalling natural and ecological disaster that hit Japan. We are learning that dealing with this Uranus is like dealing with fire: it can be put to many amazing uses to improve our lives, but it has also the capacity to burn all our hopes to cinders and cause severe geological and political shocks.
Between June and August 2011 Uranus and Pluto will be transiting at a distance of around eighty nine degrees from each other, very close to what astrologers call a square aspect (ninety degrees angle). The aspect will be close enough to give the world a taste of its significance. The main exact dates for this historical transit are still in the future though, June and September 2012, May and October 2013, April and December 2014, and finally April 2015. These are seven exact squares in three years!
From the lengthy duration of this transit we can gather that it will be indeed a transformer of our collective mind-set, an opportunity to embrace real changes as it hasn’t occurred for decades; also, of course, implying an abrupt end of some of our old ways of doing things, forced by compelling outer circumstances.
It wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that this is one of the cosmic factors that will be eventually responsible for the birth of a new civilization, or, at least, for the demise of the old one! It has been in the past and it will be now even more so, because of the other major planetary shifts occurring at the same time. It is not all gloom and doom either, because only through a deep renewal of our human values we can look forward to a viable future on the planet.
A radical way of tackling ingrained problems is emerging and will continue to gain strength in the coming years. This could be very positive, if enough conscious individuals decide to take a stand, but it is also naturally fraught with the danger of extremism, power-mongering, and the desperate attempt on the part of the powers to be and the international plutocracy (dominion of the super rich) to cling to the old corrupted and unfair ways.
More instances of war, international hostility and general unrest are possible, as well as more geological turbulence, because both Uranus and Pluto symbolize unmitigated and uncompromising stances, Uranus bent on fostering change no matter the cost, and Pluto bent on destroying in order to make a complete fresh start, because he is as much the God of Life as he is the God of Death.
The strength and solidity of our public institutions, systems of government, education, science and technology, industries, financial institutions, laws, ideologies, beliefs will be put to one of the greatest test in recent history.
Countries in the Middle East and in the African continent will continue a steady surge of uprisings, Central and South American countries will follow suit, while also giants like China, Russia and India will be seriously unsettled, the old system of government tested as never before.
Since 2008 the energetic Cardinal Signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) have become activated by various transits, meaning that this is time for action and not procrastination, that collectively we are all quite driven to participate into those ground-breaking activities, sometimes even subversive and dangerous ones, that will be necessary to bring on the changes we want to see in the world. They are anyway fated to occur, because the time is right, as the cosmos is clearly showing.
Many of us who feel their life style and livelihood threatened by these social upheavals could do well to prepare for more adjustments, looking at what seems now unsettling with an eye to the future, when those same changes will bring on a renewed sense of security and a better world, once the dust has had time to set on the ruins of the old one.
In a way the present season is the ideal time to begin making some of those adjustments. The main aim would be to become more independent and self sufficient, reducing our needs and working on our life skills, like building, gardening, husbandry, recycling, DIY projects, creating more independent incomes etc. These are the skills that could help us ride the wave of possible future crisis with greater ease.
Observing Uranus-Pluto’s mutual relationship in the context of their whole cycle (synodical period), they formed a waning square between 1932 and 1934 (extending to 1935/36), then they met in conjunction between 1965 and 1966 (extending to 1968), and they are now approaching the waxing square that will extend to 2015/16. The past dates have been very significant in shaping our collective history, with the enormous socio-economic changes of the 1930s during their previous square, that culminated in the Second World War, and the cultural revolution of the 1960s, during their conjunction (a more constructive aspect than the square), that ushered a wave of revolutionary thinking, as well as social and political reforms that many of us take now for granted but weren’t granted at all, back then.
In June 2011 the Uranus-Pluto’s square will receive an indirect boost from the transits of Saturn and Mercury, traveling in Libra and Cancer respectively, and forming wide squares and oppositions to Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn, around the 20th of the month. Later on a similar trigger could be Mars in Cancer opposing Pluto and squaring Uranus, between the 9th and 13th of August.
When faster moving celestial bodies enter in contact with slow moving ones they function as triggers of their energies, bringing the effect of the slow transits in our every day immediate experience.
Another loop for Mercury
Mercury will make his cosmic loop between August 2 and 27, from early Virgo to mid-Leo. Careful consideration of the way you communicate your mind and your manner of thinking will be on the cards for some Virgo (August23/24) and Leo (August11/23). Expect some disruptions, delays and misunderstandings; even in the most carefully planned, routine jobs.