April-May 2019 astrological highlights: the Lunar Nodes aligned to Pluto-Saturn + Uranus in Taurus

This post has been already published, in a slightly edited form, in the Uki’s Village News, issue 105, April/May 2019.
Astronomicum 'Caesareum' by Michael Ostendorfer (1540)

Astronomicum ‘Caesareum’ by Michael Ostendorfer (1540)

The Lunar Node, Pluto and Saturn

The highlights of the April/May period will be two alignments of the Lunar Nodes to Pluto (April 5) and Saturn (May 1). The conjunction South Node-Pluto (and opposition North Node-Pluto) will be exact on the same day as the Aries New Moon (first New Moon in the astrological yearly calendar).

Both the Pluto and Saturn’s alignments will also happen on the same degree of longitude (23 degrees Capricorn and Cancer) as the Sun’s southernmost and northernmost degrees of declination, corresponding with the Winter/Summer Solstices . This is only a symbolical or numerical connection though: the two planes of celestial declination and celestial longitude being different from each other. Any apparent coincidence can be considered significant in astrology, because we are dealing here with becoming aware of all possible meaningful coincidences in our lives and the life of the planet (synchronicity).

Pluto will also turn Stationary-Retrograde on April 25, while sitting on this critical degree, just about on the exact declination of the Tropic of Capricorn. The alignments of the Nodes to Saturn will go beyond May, returning on July 4 and September 28.

These are all huge events in Mundane Astrology, that branch of the art that deals with the worldly effects of planetary motions.

The North and South Nodes of the Moon (also known, more picturesquely, as the Head and Tail of the Dragon) are the ascending and descending points of interception of the Moon and Earth’s orbits. Due to the Moon and Earth’s constant motion, these points naturally move too, completing 360 degrees in about nineteen years. The Nodes are closely connected to the phenomenon of Eclipses because it is only when the Sun is close to one of the Nodes, near a New or Full Moon time, that Lunar and Solar Eclipses can occur.  This means that the Nodes are linked with the deep experiences associated with Eclipses, new beginning and climaxes on a grand scale. They represent in astrology an axis of collective and individual destiny, showing the direction we are going, the trajectory between past and future enacted in the present moment.

The conjunction to the South Node (and opposition to the North Node) with Pluto occur only once every sixteen or seventeen years; with Saturn every twelve years or so.

The South Node has to do with the past; in this instance the world’s past. It has to do with letting go of what of the past is dragging us back (coal, bigotry and greed come to mind). The two Nodes are an axis and never work separately; if one is affected the other is too. So what we do with these mighty transits will have enormous effect on the future (the North Node), how things will eventually turn out.

Pluto is the planet of crisis, transformation, power struggles and all experiences in life that help to change us in radical ways. Saturn and Capricorn, on the other hand, are symbols of structure, security, ambition, the established order, authority, governments etc. These alignments certainly indicate a serious shake up of the established order of things, the sort of things we take for granted.

Much corruption, injustice and hypocrisy of our past and present are coming to the surface now. Confronting these could help remove our gaze from the scapegoats we have chosen to bear the burden of our collective guilt. Confronting stuff within ourselves (Pluto), taking responsibility and doing something about it (Capricorn and Saturn) are key necessities here.

Uranus in Taurus

We cannot forget that we are also still adjusting to the recent ingress of Uranus in Taurus (March 6), transit that will continue to 2025.  A passage over the very first degrees of any Sign is always harbinger of significant adjustments in the planet’s psyche, especially when a game changer like Uranus is involved.  The Moon on April 5-7, the Sun on April 23, Mercury on May 9, Venus on May 19 will in turn align to Uranus, bringing its exciting and/or disruptive energy to the fore around these dates. Times for things to perhaps unexpectedly change in our lives, our destiny taking a u-turn of sorts, new unforeseen opportunities arising, especially if the first four degrees of the Fixed Signs happen to be highlighted in your Birth Horoscope (from the first to the fourth degrees Taurus, Scorpio, Leo, Aquarius).

All these cosmic events are actually foreshadowing the big one on the horizon, the actual conjunction of Saturn and Pluto on January 13 2020, ending a mutual cycle that had its climax at opposition, around 9/11 (covering the period from August 2001 to June 2002). Let’s hope this is good news, the end of the bitter divisions that have been breaking the world apart in recent times.

 

 

Leo Full Moon, Venus entering Aries and meeting Uranus, a fiery time

What difference a day makes!  It seems only yesterday that I was raving on about the watery realms of Neptune and Venus in Pisces, and here we are now, enveloped by a highly charged Fire energy, not only from the Leo Full Moon, but from other fiery events happening around the same time. The effect of the Full Moon will last up to the next Pisces New Moon on February 22.

The Full Moon in Leo on February 8 or 7, depending where you happen to be in the world (February 8, 8.56 am, my local time), has the power for firing up many areas of our lives, in particular if the 17th, 18th and 19th degree of the Fire, Air and Fixed Signs are constellated in our Birth Chart (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius, Libra, Aquarius, Gemini, Taurus and Scorpio). The birthdays actually aligned to the Full Moon will be Leo, born August 9 to 11, Aquarius born February 7 to 9, Taurus born May 7 to 9, and Scorpio born November 9 to 11. Also if you have your Natal Moon, Mars, Venus,  Mercury or one of the four Angles (Ascendant, Descendant, Mid-Heaven, Lower-heaven) on these degrees you are in for some pleasantly warm or unpleasantly hot times. For you this will be a more remarkable event than a round of the mill lunation.

Also particularly susceptible to the intensity of this Full Moon will be the Baby Boomers born between September 1949 and June 1952 because the Leo Full Moon will be conjunct their Natal Pluto. And  those individuals born from the middle of 1959 to the middle 1960 because they have their Natal Uranus around the same degree at birth. Both Uranus and Pluto are known as powerful agents of change. The Full Moon will make more openly visible to you and those around you the need for a general reorientation of your life, involving a radical departure from the past.

The way the Full Moon climax will turn up for you depends on the use or abuse you have made of the transits active during the last fortnight. You can either reach the peak of your creative endeavors shining in the full glory of success, being loved and appreciated for your efforts, or just create more emotional dramas in your life and relationships, in order to feel alive. Negatively in fact the Leo Full Moon, especially this year, could prove a stressful event for many. Positively it could instead bring some passion and enthusiasm back into our routine, enlivening everything.

Here is the Horoscope for this event, calculated for the coordinates of my place in Eastern Australia. While the orientation of the planets will be different in different places (the celestial bodies’ relative distance to the local horizon and meridian) the mutual relationship between the Sun, the Moon and the planets remains the same all over the globe.

click to view larger image

On February 7, few hours before the Full Moon, Mercury reached his Superior Conjunction to the Sun (transiting on the other side of the Sun from us). When the Moon becomes Full on the 8th she will not only oppose the Sun but also Mercury. The power of the Moon to stir passions and emotions will be more keenly felt because of this double opposition, affecting also the way we think, our reason and rationality. The call within our hearts will be a better guide at this time, while attempting to rationalize our feelings too much could bring poor results.

Mercury, at the moment completely invisible, lost in the glare of the Sun for the rest of February, is preparing for his next appearance as an Evening Star in early March, especially for people in the Northern Hemisphere. Mercury will form his next Inferior Conjunction (transiting between the Earth and the Sun) on March 21, day of the Aries Equinox, after that returning to visibility as a Morning Star.

As you can see from the above Chart Venus is on the threshold of a new Sign, moving from Watery Pisces to Fiery Aries just a few hours past the Leo Full Moon. Two days later, on the 10th, Venus will align to Uranus in Aries. A great deal of excitement generally accompanies this transit, even more so this time due to the proximity of the Leo Full Moon. Negatively it could however enhance the stressful potential of the Leo Full Moon. The need for independence and self-determination is such in this aspect that it could affect negatively the harmony and cooperation within relationships, causing emotional rifts, arguments and uncompromising attitudes. At the same time Venus is also activating the trine Saturn-Neptune, by forming meaningful angles to both of them (semi-sextile to Neptune in early Pisces and quincunx to Saturn in late Libra). This is great, but lasting only a day or two, at the start of Venus’ transit through Aries. It will help to tap into our imagination and intuition without forgetting the practicalities. Positively Venus in Aries can help all of us in fact, and especially women, to be more assertive and positive, without  becoming too bossy or arrogant. We can go after what we want with more passion, courage and initiative. Venus will remain in Aries until March 5.

To add to this list of events Saturn is becoming Stationary-Retrograde on February 7, thus refraining, for the time being, to enter Scorpio (the actual ingress of Saturn in Scorpio will happen only on October 6 2012). Saturn Retrograde’s period represents a positive time to re-think the way we organize and structure our lives, routines, work, business. An opportunity to catch up with all the jobs that have been left behind, unfinished, weighting on our back and stopping us from moving forward. Roll up your sleeves again, says Saturn, not time for procrastinating. You either do it in the next few months or forget about it . Mars is helping this trend too by moving backward in Virgo, a Sign bent on work and healthy routines. I have discussed the retrogradation of Mars in Virgo in earlier posts.

Let’s make this a joyous and passionate Full Moon.

A look into the future: 2012 Astrology, January to March

Apollo's Chariot III, by Odilon Redon

Welcome to my thoughts for the Capricorn Solstice season, January to March 2012.

Uranus Direct in Aries

Since December 2011 Uranus and Jupiter have resumed their direct motion, while Saturn is slowing down and will soon become Retrograde. The irrevocable dance of the planets continues.

When planets turn direct, after their retro period, the function they represent has the greater chance to be expressed outwardly in a positive and direct manner.

Uranus turned Stationary-Direct on December 10, 2011, around the time of the Gemini Total Lunar Eclipse, promising an accelerated pace of change for the next six months or so. This transit will strengthen the willingness to try new directions, moving on from the habitual and humdrum.

Uranus is said to be more dangerous and unpredictable in his effect when moving retrograde. The need for change is then more likely to implode, not finding suitable outlets for the release of his erratic energy, or to be squandered in anxious and nerve-wracking attempts to cut with the past. During the Direct motion instead Uranus’ intense drive can be more readily focused on external projects and active changes, often of a radical nature. This is the phase Uranus is entering now, until mid-July 2012.

To some of us Uranus in early Aries will offer the opportunity to implement changes we have been obsessing about for a while but lacked the ability or opportunity to make real. We are slowly being released from a period of high anxiety and erratic nervous energy, toward a period when we should feel more in charge, doing  things our own way.

Uranus’ transits over the Sun always entail an experience of individual uniqueness, bringing about some very independent choices.

This phase will be more keenly felt by the early Fire Signs: Aries (March 20/29), Leo (July 23/31), Sagittarius (November 22/30). With greater difficulty, by some early Cancer (June 21/July 1), Libra (September 22/30), and Capricorn (December 22/30) also.

Jupiter Direct in Taurus

Jupiter, has returned, in retro motion, to the start of Taurus, and has now began his journey in this Earth Sign all over again, hopefully this time enriched by greater practical wisdom and inspired by more realistic goals.

Amongst all the present planetary influences, until June 2012, Jupiter in Taurus will be a stabilizing factor. At the end of this season the third and last pass of the harmonious aspect between Jupiter and Pluto (March 13, 2012) could suggest some radical solutions, legislations and bills to find creative ways out of the general mess, practical and austere means to harmonize our natural needs for expansion and growth, our human arrogance and ambition (Jupiter) with the real ecological needs of the Planet, her dwindling resources, her desperate plight for regeneration and rebirth.

Since mid 2011 the Jupiter-Pluto’s contact has shown how it can be a very constructive and transformative influence. If integrated it could help the world to regenerate before it begins to degenerates beyond hope. They suggest finding wiser and more sustainable ways to interact with Earth’s resources, revealing riches and solving mysteries that have puzzled earthlings for thousands of years.

The long awaited first pass of the Uranus-Pluto’s  square, on June 24 2012, will give these grass roots aspirations enough fuel to make a big bang for the rest of 2012 and the whole (at least) of 2013 .

While Jupiter transits placid Taurus though growth is slowed down, everyone is looking for more security. Much energy can be stored in the root system of our psyche and the planet, for a few more months, because Jupiter in Gemini, from the second half of 2012, will have a much more buzzing and risk taking type of energy.

The aspirations of Jupiter, his flights of intuition all the way to divinity are now checked by the pragmatic solidity of Taurus. To feel contented with our lot could be the outcome of such a transit when used wisely. This will be especially true for the Earth Signs of Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn; and also, perhaps in a more challenging way, for the Fixed Signs Scorpio, Leo, and Aquarius.

Saturn Stationary/Retrograde in Libra

As ever the forward dance of some of the giants is punctuated by the beginning of the backward dance of another.

Ringed Saturn turns Stationary/Retrograde on February 8, on the very last degree of the Sign Libra. Scorpios will have to wait until October to welcome Saturn in their mist.

From January to October 2012 Saturn will contact, in turn, the Sun degree of some Libra (October 17/24), Aries (April 13/20), Cancer (July 16/23), Capricorn (January 13/20); and, more gently, also Gemini (June 14/21), and Aquarius (February 12/19). A retrogradation of Saturn over someone’s Sun manifests often as a sort of test, things appear harder than usual, and, in some cases, life seems to have lost its meaning, depression easily settling in, when hope is lost.

It is a reality test. Can you take it without crumbling into many pieces? After this honest look at your life what have you learnt from Saturn? Which areas of your life need the most urgent work, restructuring, making more efficient? Often it comes down to a realization that you pay for everything and there aren’t many easy rides in this world.

Three different generations are also experiencing their respective Saturn’s Return in late Libra, over the next seven months. These are coming of age transits, to more fully embrace who we have become and begin to appreciate the cycle ahead of us, no matter our age. Growing up has its moments of sadness, to be sure, but also many rewards, the sort we appreciate only at the right age, and not a moment before. That’s why Saturn was known as the Lord of Time, dispensing the wisdom that comes from experience, and hard ego-building work.

The Saturn-Return’s generations comprise:  the very old, now in their nineties, born October / December 1923, and April/September 1924. The Baby Boomers, in their sixties, born November 1952/ April 1953, and August 1953/October 1953. And the Saturnine Youngsters, turning just thirty, lucky them, born October/December 1982, and May/August 1983.

The Retrogradation of Mars in Virgo

Amongst the most important astrological events of the start of 2012 will be the lengthy retrogradation of Mars in Virgo, from January 24 to April 14. Mars will enter the next Sign of Libra only in early July 2012, after having transited Virgo for a whooping eight months, since November 2011!

The fact that Virgo is highlighted here shows a need to adjust our daily routine, clean our acts, tackling those jobs we always find a good excuse not to do. Making our space at work and home clear of clutter, organizing everything in a more rational way will contribute to efficiency and better practical outcomes.

The tendency of people influenced by Virgo to become engrossed in details of no consequence will be tested during the Mars’ retrograde period when opportunities will arise to look into our habits (from diet to work), and experience, in a more acute way, the anxieties brought about by the inability to stick to priorities.

The birthdays directly aligned to Mars retro in Virgo are: Virgo (August 26/September 16), Pisces (February 21/March 14), Gemini (May 24/June 14), and Sagittarius (November 25/December 15).

It could be difficult for many of us to freely express our passions and highly charged emotions or to go after what we want in an effective way. This could be true for the birthdays given and also for those whose Mars was in a prominent or difficult position at birth. In particular individuals who had Mars transiting Virgo the day they were born and will experience the all important two yearly Mars’ Return during the retro period (end of January to mid-April).

When Mars moves retrograde his energy, usually spontaneous and outgoing, is somewhat internalized, to serve psychic rather than physical purposes. There arise the need for re-thinking the way we go about asserting ourselves, our modalities of action, in our personal lives as well as communities of people and nations.

If our habitual behavior has often created strife and attracted opposition in the past perhaps now is the right time to look into these issues and the way we normally handle conflicts in our lives.  Because Mars, during retrogradation, becomes somewhat frustrated in his desire for action, we got to find another way to deal with anger, and with all the unspent energy that boils beneath the surface.  Virgo suggests taking up a discipline or healthy routine that could help dealing with the unspent energy and the unending frustrations and irritations of daily life (Virgo’s stuff).

Neptune returning to Pisces

After six months spell in Aquarius, Neptune finally returns to Pisces on February 4, to stay in this Water Sign until 2025. This transit will define an epoch in human history, reflecting on our spiritual and aesthetic values for years to come.

As our daily lives become more and more impacted by the momentous adjustments and disruptions all around us, Neptune in Pisces can show us transcendental ways to navigate the troubled waters of the present, enhancing creativity, imagination and compassion. There will be a sense of underlying unity between us and the planet, a striving toward greater integration amongst races, religions and ideologies, in the face of the still polarized situation on the surface of things. Outlasting many other transits that preoccupy astrologers at the present time, this influence gives us real hope that we will be guided toward greater spiritual unity in the next decade and beyond. The fate of the planet, I feel, depends very much on the way we will be able to embrace Neptune in Pisces, avoiding its downside of extreme passivity and escapism.

This season the birthday people touched by Neptune will be the early Water and Mutable Signs: Pisces (February 19/22), Cancer (June 21/24), Scorpio (October 23/26), Virgo (August 23/26), Gemini (May 21/24), and Sagittarius (November 22/25). You will feel, in a quiet space within, growing like a pool slowly filled by spring rains, a new dimension of being. This could open your perception to intangible realities, making you long for more love and creative joy in your life, refusing to be caged in by routines and duties.

It is a poignant fact that, while Neptune shifts into Pisces, Mars is making his difficult transit through the opposite-complementary Sign of Virgo. These transits should help us see two apparently opposite ways of experiencing the world: one free of per-conceived ideas, easy flowing, imaginative and creative (Pisces), the other limited by necessities and struggling to manifest the dream into practical reality (Virgo). This polarity is vital though, because, if Pisces and Neptune are the soul’s life of the planet, imbued with the vision of earthly and unearthly paradises, ultimately no real good work could be accomplished without Mars’ drive and Virgo’s dutifulness.

Happy transits, everyone.

EYE ON THE SOUTHERN SKY, APRIL 2010

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April and May will be great months to observe five close members of our Solar family

Jupiter is visible in the early morning sky, transiting Pisces at top speed and bringing abundant creativity to all the Water Signs, Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio: time for penetrating insights and to reap the fruits of your previous labours, generally enjoying going with the flow of things (see Jupiter in Pisces post).

Venus came back into dim view in March, but only in April this brightest of planets will stay up long enough after sunset (about one and half hour) to be easily observable. This is the evening star incarnation of Venus, Vesper or Hesperus to the ancient star gazers, a self-reflective phase of this planetary intelligence, instilling wisdom in relating because it is considered of past experiences. Venus will transit Taurus from April 1 to 25. All Earth Signs, Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn, will benefit from her wise rays (see Venus post).

A long stay of Mercury in Taurus is on the cards too, entering on April 3 and leaving only on June 10. It will be dimly visible at twilight times (evening in April, morning in May). The child of the Solar System will perform its station and retrogradation in Taurus between April 18 and May 12, affecting in particular Taureans born between April 21 and May 3. These few weeks could be the ideal time for a break from routine and duties. If you slow down the pace of your life you are less likely to experience frustration. This will be a test of your mental flexibility and ability to adapt, not usually your forte.

Mars (still in Leo but now direct in motion) will be also visible on top of the sky toward the north from sunset, setting out of view just past midnight. The light of the red planet is dimming. Collectively these are better times to be enterprising and to use our energy with more purpose and less wastage. The Twin Stars of Castor and Pollux in the constellation of Gemini can be observed nor far from Mars.

Saturn will be visible throughout the night, setting just before sunrise. The ringed planet was at its most brilliant just the day of the Autumn Equinox (March 21), its rays very powerful and in full retrogradation, during its opposition to the Sun. Saturn will transit Virgo in retrogradation from April 8, re-entering Libra only in July. This last pass into Virgo could bring back some of the restrictions we have experienced in 2008 and 2009. To go along with this energy we need to be a little bit more careful, more humble and also readier to help others. Our collective return may seem scarce for the present time, but the passage into Libra should be some relief and a fairer go for everyone.

For an indepth reading of the major transits for the present and near future, please visit 2010 Forecast page.

The Earth Signs are definitely at the receiving end of many transits in April.

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