August 2018 Astrology: The longest Lunar Eclipse of the century, multiple retrogrades and the ongoing risky dance of Mars-Uranus

Eclipse ancient artA slightly shorter version of this post was published in early August 2918 in the Uki Village News.

Last Eclipse Season for 2018

Spanning the months of July and August 2018 the Eclipse season will be intensified in its effect and extended in its duration by the fact that many planets are going retrograde, including our closest brothers, Mercury and Mars, with Saturn, Chiron, Neptune, Pluto and, from August 7, Uranus also. Mercury’s retro period in Leo will go from July 25 to August 19, while Mars’ current retrogradation, between Aquarius and Capricorn, will last until August 27. On top of this Mars has been closest to our planet for a number of years, fact that tends to make his war-like nature more evident; while, between July 7 and September 24, Mars will also be ‘out of bounds’ (beyond the usual 23° declination), another factor that could make the martial energy more erratic and unpredictable .

The Cancer Solar Eclipse of July 13 began the cycle and the August 11 Leo Solar Eclipse will end it. The July 28 Total Lunar Eclipse represents the culmination of the whole period, right in the middle of it, and it is indeed a very special event, not only to astrologers but astronomers as well, because of its length, a whopping one hour and 42 minutes, the longest lasting of the whole 21st century.

Many Retrogrades

In August and September the July 28 Total Lunar Eclipse in Aquarius will still dominate. The reason for this is that during the eclipse Mars is closely conjunct the Moon and thus the difficult ongoing 90° between Mars and Uranus (active at least until October) will also involve the Moon, the Sun and the Lunar Nodes (T Square). This is a combination of energies that could sorely try our collective patience.

This transit acquires strength due to the Lunar Eclipse, thus extending its influence beyond the month of August, but it started having an effect already in May 2018, when the first pass of the Mars-Uranus’ Square took place, just as both planets were entering Aquarius and Taurus respectively (exact on May 16).

The fact is that while Mars, in backward motion, implies that we are required to soften our stance, looking inward rather than outward for the causes of conflicts and misunderstanding, the strong involvement of Uranus could make it a lot more difficult to find the patience and calm needed to review the way we usually deal with conflicts. And retro Mercury will not help by aggravating any difficulty in communication.

Mars retro always represents an opportunity to avoid arguments by maintaining a calm and detached attitude, remaining centered in the eye of any storm that may come our way, avoiding unfruitful retaliation. The angle with Uranus, especially coinciding with such a full on eclipse, could make this task ever more difficult, because we are, at the same time, pulled toward a more antagonistic and rebellious way of dealing with confrontations, while our reactions could be exaggerated and compulsive. Uranus is in fact the least diplomatic, more radical and uncompromising planetary energy there is!

Again the Fixed Signs of Aquarius, Leo, Taurus and Scorpio are the ones that could be more directly affected by these events, especially if the 4th, 5th or 6th degrees (Lunar Eclipse) or the 17th, 18th or 19th degrees (Solar Eclipse) of these Signs are highlighted in your Birth Horoscope. Because the nature of these Signs is wilful and focussed there is here a need for everyone to be more flexible and tolerant.

The Lunar Node involved in the Lunar Eclipse is the South, indicating that whatever we need to face now, individually and collectively, has to do with negative patterns established long ago, and that this could be an ideal time to recognize and release them.

Positive Transits

To help dealing with the emotional extremes and frustration of the Mars-Uranus’ aspect, Jupiter in Scorpio, is forming a harmonious angle (120°) with Neptune in Pisces, exact on August 19, and active until early September. Here perhaps is one cosmic key to survive and thrive through this challenging and intense period: the cultivation of compassion, closeness to nature and any activities that can help you relax and unwind, thus reconnect to your emotional/spiritual source.

Another helpful transit, active between August 7 and September 9, is the passage of Venus through Libra, the Sign of cooperation and justice, showing us a way of reconciling differences and finding a middle ground from which to work out these differences in creative rather than disruptive ways.

September 2018

Past August the month of September looks mild in comparison, with a stronger accent on the Earth Signs, implying a more practical and realistic outlook that will help all of us to stay more grounded.

Mars will then be direct in motion too, encouraging the start or re-start of any enterprise and project we may have had to put on halt during retrogradation. The effect of all the aspects I discussed before will be still lingering though, if not as intense.

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Major Transits active in June and July 2018: Mars Retro in Aquarius; second Eclipse Season 2018; Uranus in Taurus

Mars Retro in Aquarius

Mars Retro in Aquarius

A shorter version of this post was published in the 100th issue of the Uki Village News, in early June 2018.

We are now well into the Uranus in Taurus era. As usual astrology seems to have anticipated much of the tensions and disruptive events, as well as the breakthroughs and evolutionary upheavals in store for the world at this time.

June and July 2018 sees a return of some of the most intense transits already active in mid May, while another eclipse season is upon us too. It will start at the July 13, Cancer 20° New Moon Partial Solar Eclipse, continuing to the July 28, Aquarius 04°Full Moon Total Lunar Eclipse, and will end on the August 11, Leo 18°New Moon Partial Solar Eclipse; three events rather than the usual two.

If your birthday falls very close, a day or so, from these dates the eclipses could prove significant for you, marking an emotional climax of some kind (Lunar Eclipse) or new beginnings in some area of your life, responding to a new level of awareness within (Solar Eclipses).

Similar effects are possible if the Moon or any planet or angle in your Birth Horoscope happen to be on or around 20th degree of Cancer, Capricorn, Aries or Libra (Lunar Eclipse), and/or the 4th/5th and the 18th degrees of Aquarius, Leo, Taurus or Scorpio (Solar Eclipse).

The Taurus Uranian era will last for the seven years stay of Uranus in this Fixed Earth Sign (until 2025). In the long or short term, depending on our personal alignment to these cosmic events, it will be better if we prepare for major and rapid transformations in our world. Being complacent could find us unprepared for the necessary adjustments to new circumstances.

The very positive side of all of this will be about aligning ourselves to our truer purpose, asserting more openly our individuality, breaking with old moulds and taboos by defying social and family convention/conditioning. In the line of major impact will be the Fixed Signs, Taurus, of course, and also Scorpio, Leo and Aquarius.  This transit will hopefully shift those Signs from their proverbial tendency to become stuck and their stubborn avoidance of change, without completely upsetting their sense of security and belonging.

Depending on the exact position of Sun, Moon and planets in our Birth Horoscopes these transits will be close and personal to us, or manifest mainly as changes in the general environment, impacting on our life in an indirect way.

From the time of writing, end of May 2018, to mid August, than again from the end of August to September 11, Mars will transit the Fixed Air Sign of Aquarius. Salient transits of Mars will be the alignment to the Lunar Nodes on June 8 and July 20, and the Mars-Uranus 90 degrees angle, from the week of May 16, to the weeks of August 2 and September 19. These difficult angles and the also challenging 45 degrees angle of Uranus to Neptune (June 16, December 15, 2018, + May 2, 2019) will dominate the whole period.  Rebellion and defiance are in the air; everybody seems more opinionated and stubborn than ever; the world is not shying away from open confrontations. Conflicts of ideas and ideologies could prevail; rationalism versus idealism; technology versus ecology. Many will need to stand up to uphold or defend the evolutionary principles and ideals of a just and tolerant world, because reactionary and ultra conservative traditions will not give up their grip on the planet without a good fight (Mars).

Manifestations of these conflicting forces are the present increase in tectonic and volcanic activities and in war-like posturing from world leaders. Look historically at the high cost modern democracies had to pay to stay alive during the last Uranus in Taurus epoch, 1934/35 to 1941/42.

With all the differences between the world now and the world of 84 plus years ago we are facing somewhat similar challenges, with rapid increase in governments power mongering, with the surge of dictatorship and general war-mongering around the globe, and the ever greedier big corporations and financial institutions’ control over our lives.

Timeline for the Mars’ Retro period

  • Mars turns Retro in Aquarius on June 27
  • Mars re-enters Capricorn on August 13
  • Mars turns Direct in Capricorn on August 28
  • Mars re-enter Aquarius on September 11

Let’s stay cool but alert, embracing the changes that come our way. They may seem daunting but they are really opportunities to rise above stagnant situations, allowing better things to manifest in our life.

 

The Waxing Moon transits Scorpio from Saturday, May 26, to Tuesday, May 29, between the Libra Gibbous and the Sagittarius Full Moon Phases

Artwork by Galina Chuvilyaeva

Artwork by Galina Chuvilyaeva

SCORPIO, Moon of depth and resourcefulness
Emotionally supportive and resilient

The WAXING MOON TRANSITS SCORPIO from Saturday, May 26, 11.39 pm,
to Tuesday, May 29, 8.28 am, with the ingress into SAGITTARIUS

Suitable energy for cleansing, getting rid of the old, spring cleaning, rubbish removal, recycling, nursing, practical and emotional support, midwifery, intimacy, partnership in business, profound talks, sharing secrets, healing old wounds, cultivating psychic powers, studying occult subjects. Purchase of insurance policies, underwear, hygiene articles, medicines, medical equipment, payment of bills, fees and taxes, collecting debts. Helping the dying, honoring the dead. Action motivated by the desire to experience, to know or to control. Reserved and deep feelings, strong attachments, intense likes and dislikes. Beware of wilfulness, emotional control, resentments, obsessive thoughts, unyielding attitudes.

*** In the garden Scorpio is a very fertile Sign. It is also suitable for propagating cuttings, grafting and irrigation. It promotes sturdy roots. Corn, squashes and tomatoes seem to like particularly to be transplanted when the Moon is in Scorpio.

*** Healing Herbs: Aloe, Don Quai, Ginseng.

A note: the garden activities associated with the Moon Sign depend also on the cycle the Moon is in. The Moon transiting through a fertile or productive Sign will no be so favorable if the Phase is not a productive one, and vice-versa. For best results the Sign and Phase of the Moon have to be considered together.

Gibbous Moon First Quarter Moon animation

The LIBRA GIBBOUS MOON PHASE starts on Saturday, May 26, 4.13 am,
and ends on Wednesday, May 30, 0.19 am, with the SAGITTARIUS FULL MOON PHASE

The Moon is waxing, 135 degrees ahead of the Sun, only 45 degrees or three and half days to the Full Moon. The Moon shows a strange shape now, like a rugby ball. Our goals are becoming more clear and we can power ahead, not too concerned about possible obstacles on our path. The power of attraction of the Full Moon proves irresistible.

*** In the garden as in life there should be plenty of activities and a sense of urgency, least one should waste the great energy available at the moment. When the Moon transits a very fertile Sign like Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces, or a productive Sign like Taurus, Libra and Capricorn in this phase practically every plant and seed can go into the garden successfully. This is the middle of the second waxing week. Ideally, after sowing or planting leafy vegetables in the first week, we should be busy putting in those plants we grow for their fruit or seedpods (tomatoes, beans, etc.).

Full Moon animationFull Moon

At Full Moon the Moon has reached a distance of 180 degrees ahead of the Sun, becoming diametrically opposed to it, with planet Earth in the middle. This is symbolically harvest time, when we reap what we have sown in the waxing period. We might experience success or failure, but either way we are coming to some important realization. The cycle has now reached its half way mark and is at its most intense. Like the New Moon a fortnight earlier this is also a time for new beginnings, not in the naïve, tentative way of the New Moon, but in a more mature and conscious way.

*** In the garden the Full Moon is a great divide: before the exact phase the increasing light and surging energy are particularly good for Annuals and above the ground crops; after the phase Perennials, Biennials, Trees and Root crops are more suited. Traditionally no sowing or planting are recommended however twelve hours before or after the phase itself. Some authors suggest even 24 hours.

The Waning Moon transits Pisces from Wednesday, May 9, to Friday, May 11, during the Aquarius Last Quarter Moon Phase

Winken Blinken & Nod

PISCES, Moon of compassion and universal sympathy
Adaptable and romantic

The WANING MOON TRANSITS PISCES from Wednesday, May 9, 1.10 pm,
to Friday, May 11, 10.40 pm, with the ingress into ARIES

Suitable energy for sailing, swimming, day dreaming, escapism, falling in love, creative writing, especially of poetry, theater, performances, movies, concerts, music, crowds, solitude, remembering. Charity, water scrying, astral traveling, past life experiences, déjà vu, psychic awakening, bliss. Purchase of swimming gear, boats, surfboards, pets, alcohol, shoes. Action motivated by the need to accommodate fate, to go with the flow. Gentle poetical expression of feelings, romantic, changeable, ambivalent. Beware of escapism, untruthfulness, drug taking, victimization, passivity, impracticality, phobias, fatalism, lack of discrimination.

*** In the garden Pisces is a very fertile, particularly suitable for growing water plants, like Water Chestnuts and Lotus. A great time for propagating cuttings, grafting, irrigation, pruning to encourage re-growth, but not potatoes that may sprout too soon. Romantic garden walks and picnics could do well too.

*** Healing Herbs: Echinacea, Eyebright, Golden Seal and Mugwort.

A note: the garden activities associated with the Moon Sign depend also on the cycle the Moon is in. The Moon transiting through a fertile or productive Sign will no be so favorable if the Phase is not a productive one, and vice-versa. For best results the Sign and Phase of the Moon have to be considered together.

Last QuarterLast Quarter to Balsamic Gif

The AQUARIUS LAST QUARTER MOON PHASE starts on Tuesday, May 8, 12.08 pm,
and ends on Saturday, May 12, 10.07 am, with the ARIES BALSAMIC MOON PHASE

If the First Quarter presented us with external challenges to overcome in order to achieve the goal promised by the Full Moon, at the Last Quarter we feel that whatever bar our progress is within us and not without. We can now take responsibility for our life and circumstances. The battle needs to be fought with oneself and not other people. Both Quarters are crucial times that suggest division and strife, but while at the First Quarter we could find refuge in the illusion that the cause of all the problems was someone or something else, now we can clearly see how we contribute to whatever crisis we may be experiencing. The Moon is now 90 degrees behind the Sun, another right angle. The friction generated by the inner dialogue could be very creative if you don’t let it depress you.

*** In the garden we should stop all sowing and planting, and concentrate on soil conditioning and cultivation. Suitable energy also for harvesting and getting rid of unwanted weeds and pests.

The Waning Moon transits Aquarius from May 7 to 9, between the Sagittarius Disseminating and the Aquarius Last Quarter Moon Phases

Golden Angels series artwork by Chuvilyaeva

Golden Angels series artwork by Chuvilyaeva

AQUARIUS, Moon of knowledge and dispassion
Friendly and eccentric

The WANING MOON TRANSITS AQUARIUS from Monday, May 7, o.48 am,
to Wednesday, May 9, 1.10 pm, with the ingress into PISCES

Suitable energy to make individual choices, to work in groups, to be with friends, to become aware of social issues, to change attitudes, share ideas, do the old thing in a new way, research, understand, study, teach, technology, Astrology, the Net, the unexpected, encounters with strangers or strange, eccentric people, UFO sighting. Purchase of books, encyclopedias, computer programs, computers, technology, electrical appliances. Action motivated by the desire to participate without losing one’s own individuality. Friendly, contained display of feeling, somewhat distant. Beware of coldness, indifference, emotional isolation, cynicism, impracticality, physical inhibitions.

*** In the garden Aquarius is considered too dry and barren for growing anything, but Pine Trees (?). Its energy is suitable for cultivating, general maintenance, pruning, pest control, weeding, harvesting. A ‘work day’ or other group activities in the garden will be ideal.

*** Healing Herbs: Chamomile, Skullcap, Valerian.

A note: the garden activities associated with the Moon Sign depend also on the cycle the Moon is in. The Moon transiting through a fertile or productive Sign will no be so favorable if the Phase is not a productive one, and vice-versa. For best results the Sign and Phase of the Moon have to be considered together.

Disseminating Moon PhaseDisseminating Moon

The SAGITTARIUS DISSEMINATING MOON PHASE starts on Friday, May 4, 9 am,
and ends on Tuesday, May 8, 12.08 pm, with the AQUARIUS LAST QUARTER MOON PHASE

The Moon is now on her return journey. This phase occurs three and half days past the Full Moon. It has been given this name because this is a time for spreading and sharing the knowledge or realization we have gathered at the Full Moon. It is the first step on the inner journey which began at the Full Moon, but it can still be an active time in the world too, with the need to reach out to others. The Moon has past her prime, but her still strong light is a reminder of her recent fullness.

*** In the garden, despite the rapidly diminishing Moon light, this is a productive time for growing things and also to apply slow release fertilizer. The fact that these are the last available days for planting before the Last Quarter should work as an incentive to get going. Favourite plants to grow during this first week of the waning cycle are the Perennials, Biennials and Root Crops because the Moon energy is being stored underground in anticipation of the resting period not too far ahead.

Last QuarterLast Quarter to Balsamic Gif

If the First Quarter presented us with external challenges to overcome in order to achieve the goal promised by the Full Moon, at the Last Quarter we feel that whatever bar our progress is within us and not without. We can now take responsibility for our life and circumstances. The battle needs to be fought with oneself and not other people. Both Quarters are crucial times that suggest division and strife, but while at the First Quarter we could find refuge in the illusion that the cause of all the problems was someone or something else, now we can clearly see how we contribute to whatever crisis we may be experiencing. The Moon is now 90 degrees behind the Sun, another right angle. The friction generated by the inner dialogue could be very creative if you don’t let it depress you.

*** In the garden we should stop all sowing and planting, and concentrate on soil conditioning and cultivation. Suitable energy also for harvesting and getting rid of unwanted weeds and pests.

The Waxing Moon transits Libra from Friday, April 27, to Sunday, April 29, between the Virgo Gibbous and the Scorpio Full Moon Phases

Artwork by Chuvilyaeva

Artwork by Chuvilyaeva

LIBRA, Moon of justice and harmony


Cooperative and artistic

The WAXING MOON TRANSITS LIBRA from Friday, April 27, 11.12 am,
to Sunday, April 29, 5.11 pm, with the ingress into SCORPIO

Suitable energy for sharing, decorating, being artistic, holding meeting, conflict resolution, diplomatic missions, weddings, engagements, parties, gifts, fantasy reading, falling in love, hairdressing, making oneself beautiful. Purchase of articles of clothing, cosmetics, furnishings, flowers, jewellery, art equipment. Action motivated by the desire to meet others half way, to be fair, to agree and harmonize. Amiable display of feeling, seeking equality, idealistic, cooperative. Beware of indecisiveness, lack of assertion, wishy-washy attitudes, peace at any cost syndrome, vanity, self indulgence.

*** In the garden Libra, unlike the other two Air Signs, Aquarius and Gemini, is traditionally considered fertile and productive. Being a Sign of Venus, goddess of pleasure and beauty, Libra is an ideal Sign to sow and transplant flowering plants and ornamental, and also herbs which help to balance the Elements in the body. Libra encourages bloom, but few seeds.

*** Healing Herbs:Corn Silk, Parsley, Uva ursi

A note: the garden activities associated with the Moon Sign depend also on the cycle the Moon is in. The Moon transiting through a fertile or productive Sign will no be so favorable if the Phase is not a productive one, and vice-versa. For best results the Sign and Phase of the Moon have to be considered together.

Gibbous to Full Moon animationGibbous Moon

The VIRGO GIBBOUS MOON PHASE starts on Thursday, April 26, 7.30 pm,
and ends on Monday, April 30, 10.58 am, with the SCORPIO FULL MOON PHASE

The Moon is waxing, 135 degrees ahead of the Sun, only 45 degrees or three and half days to the Full Moon. The Moon shows a strange shape now, like a rugby ball. Our goals are becoming more clear and we can power ahead, not too concerned about possible obstacles on our path. The power of attraction of the Full Moon proves irresistible.

*** In the garden as in life there should be plenty of activities and a sense of urgency, least one should waste the great energy available at the moment. When the Moon transits a very fertile Sign like Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces, or a productive Sign like Taurus, Libra and Capricorn in this phase practically every plant and seed can go into the garden successfully. This is the middle of the second waxing week. Ideally, after sowing or planting leafy vegetables in the first week, we should be busy putting in those plants we grow for their fruit or seedpods (tomatoes, beans, etc.).

Venus in Aquarius, cool, refined, friendly, free

Marlene Dietrich Venus in Aquarius

Marlene Dietrich Venus in Aquarius

Venus will transit the Fixed Air Sign of Aquarius from January 18, 12.43 pm, to February 11, 10.19 am.

Aquarius is a friendly and fair placement for Venus, but not a particularly emotional one. Independence, detachment and dispassion are more a driving force here than personal feelings. Under this transit we are less likely to be carried away by powerful emotions, and more inclined to cultivate an impersonal perspective. Especially during the self-reflective phase of Venus Evening Star, which began on January 9, these traits of Venus in Aquarius could be a great asset if we need to make sense of something, in particular when we are trying to gain clarity on relationships issues; and also financial issues.

This placement has though also a negative side, because more often than not feelings cannot be neatly rationalized, understood or psychologised, belonging as they do to areas of experience beyond all logic and reason. Because of this tendency Venus in Aquarius people may be considered cold and unfeeling by more emotionally intense types.

One thing that Venus in Aquarius does not suffer from is insularity. Only the placement of Venus in Pisces, following Aquarius, is perhaps better at including the whole human community in one loving embrace, Aquarius takes second place.

During this transit the Air Signs (Aquarius, Gemini, Libra) are more likely to receive the benefits of this ‘airy’ Venus. The other Fixed Signs (Taurus, Leo and Scorpio) may benefit too, but possibly also encounter some difficulties in their relationships, centering on issues of independence versus dependency, freedom of ideas versus per-conceived notions of gender role or any such thing. This could be a great transit though for stimulating creativity, especially in writing, and to open our minds to new ideas and concepts that we may have thought too outlandish or too idealistic before. Aquarius introduces a certain quirkiness to our love life, a way of looking at relationship from a different angle. First and foremost independence and room to move are a must for this Venus’ placement. This is a Venus very loyal to social causes or ideals, but she wouldn’t stand to be caged in by too close or co-dependent relationships.

This is a great Venus’ transit for group activities, especially those that include learning something and sharing new and exciting ideas and knowledge, workshops, language classes, trips abroad, meeting with foreigners or people different from the usual group you frequent.

On February 4 Venus in Aquarius will form the most significant angle of the whole period, the Square (90 degrees) with Jupiter in the Fixed Water Sign of Scorpio. This transit could bring any relationship or financial issue to a climax of some kind, Jupiter tending to magnify everything and resolve issues by gaining a more philosophical perspective on them, personal problems seen in larger context. Negatively this transit could cause exaggeration, over-estimation, excessive confidence, over indulgence etc.

If Venus is in Aquarius in the Natal Chart

The traits described so far will fit the typical Aquarius Venus person, if there ever was such a one. Depending on other placements in the Natal Horoscope these traits will be more or less dominant. Often people born when Venus was transiting Aquarius have the Sun and/or Mercury in Capricorn, Pisces, or even Sagittarius or Aries. Combined with Capricorn this Venus will be more conservative and in need of emotional security and commitment. Combined with Pisces the Venus in Aquarius individual will have to contend between his/her need for a fluid expression of emotions and that for clarity and detachment. Venus in Aquarius combined with any of the Fire Signs will be more independent instead, not overly emotional but more passionate and expressive.

Aquarius Venus can be somewhat scared of intimacy and even try to avoid it, preferring the more impersonal, non judgmental, less binding atmosphere of friendship. A spouse, lover, child or parent of someone with a Venus in Aquarius will have to be first and foremost a friend, because love, respect and freedom go hand in hand with this Venus’ placement.

The ideal love partner should be open minded enough to accept the Venus in Aquarius person’s need for time on their own and for interacting with other people. And, of foremost importance for this Venus, is to feel that their unconventional ideas about life and love are not just tolerated, but accepted with a open heart.

Intellectual stimulation, comradeship and the sharing of similar cultural interests would be a more potent aphrodisiac than any romantic candle light dinner for this Venus.