A Fresh Route: Mars in Aquarius+Venus in Scorpio

By Johannes Plenio jplenio ( [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

By Johannes Plenio jplenio ( [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

We are still in the dark of the Moon, the cyclic restart of the lunar cycle. New beginnings abound pointing us in fresh directions. The Moon's new cycle is underway at the start of the week, so be prepared to rise and forge ahead. Mars re-enters Aquarius today, following Venus' entrance into Scorpio yesterday. Mars direct in Aquarius will make its third and final square with Uranus next week (Sept. 18), but we will feel it the next two weeks. 

Mars in Aquarius square Uranus is innovative and cutting edge in its approach, but also volatile, even erratic. The rebel genius is the Aquarian/Uranian ideal, and Mars' square can inspire sudden breaks with the past and anything suffocating autonomy. So, the next two weeks offers up another wave of rebellion, freedom fighting, and groundbreaking moves. However, unlike Mars/Uranus squares earlier this year, Venus joins the conversation. 

Yes, Venus will turn retrograde next month. We may already notice strange turnarounds in our relationships, serendipitous meetups, or even blast from the past reemergences. Those will get louder Oct. through Nov., and Uranus flavors each of these changing dynamics in our partnerships. Anticipate allowing yourself and others more space to reinvent themselves.

Experimentation with new arrangements and interactions is a likely scenario. However, Venus in Scorpio gets deep into the core of relational issues, uncovering all hidden dimensions. Be sensitive to that, and avoid pushing others too hard too fast. Venus retrograde is a cycle of revaluing what we love and want, so give your heart some time to reflect. Some profound work lies ahead. 


Going Deep: New Moon/Partial Solar Eclipse in Cancer 2018

Demänová cave of freedom, "Emerald Lake"; photo by  Juloml

Demänová cave of freedom, "Emerald Lake"; photo by Juloml

New Moon/Partial Solar Eclipse @ 20 degrees Cancer 41'

July 12, 2018

7:48 PM Los Angeles

10:48 PM New York

July 13, 2018

3:48 AM London

6:48 AM Dubai

10:49 AM Beijing

12:48 PM Sydney

2:48 PM Auckland

On July 12/13, the Moon will slightly graze the solar disk. In tropical Cancer, a partial solar eclipse will be visible in the extreme southern hemisphere. While this isn't an especially potent eclipse by itself, its near exact (and contra-parallel) opposition to Pluto gives it an extra edge. Marking the beginning of the final eclipse season of 2018, this New Moon culminates as a highly dynamic total lunar eclipse in just two weeks. 

In the midst of Mars currently in retrograde and an approaching Mercury retrograde cycle (beginning July 25), the astrology of the next month is exceptionally vibrant. In Cancer, this New Moon/partial eclipse highlights our sensitivities, vulnerabilities, and deeply concealed feelings. Ruled by the Moon, the sign of Cancer symbolizes the human need for security, safety, and trusted human bonds. 

Attuned to the inner life and imagination, the Cancer archetype prefers to lay low or at least stick with more intimate and meaningful interactions. As mentioned, sitting in direct opposition to this New Moon/eclipse is Pluto, confronting us with both a magnified emotional response and the surfacing of highly unconscious or repressed psychic content. 

Given the context of the background astrology, most notably Mars retrograde, this isn't a good time to force things to completion or reach definitive conclusions, especially if we find ourselves reacting solely on emotion. This New Moon encourages reflection and observation. For some, this lunation could be somewhat uncomfortable with the sudden emergence of feelings or unanticipated reactions. 

On a collective level, this New Moon can ignite a conversation about ignored social injustices, corruption of power, atrocities, and all things discarded. On the personal level, this lunation is a starting point for expanding awareness of realities which have gone long neglected. But deep healing is always possible as we choose to face what scares us about ourselves or our environment. 

Combined with Mars retrograde nearing the lunar South Node, this Plutonian New Moon/eclipse adds further fuel to a process of dealing with or moving through unresolved anger, rage, frustration, or fear. It's an ideal moment to deal with these residual feelings and find safe, healthy outlets for their release or expression. 

Pluto ultimately beckons us beyond our concerns to take part in something more extensive, meaningful, and fulfilling. What often prevents us from connecting to the greater community are our own personal hangups, wounds, or insecurities. The more we shed light on such things, the more empowered we become to extend our reach beyond ourselves so we can take part in healing the planet. 

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path


New Revolutions: New Moon in Taurus 2018

Photo by  Ira O. Villanueva  via Wikimedia Commons. 

Photo by Ira O. Villanueva via Wikimedia Commons. 

New Moon @ 24 Taurus 36'

May 15, 2018

4:48 AM Los Angeles 

7:48 AM New York

12:48 PM London

3:48 PM Dubai

7:48 PM Beijing

9:48 PM Sydney

11:48 PM Auckland 

This month’s New Moon occurs in tropical Taurus just hours before the planet Uranus enters Taurus, later followed by Mars entering Aquarius. With two planetary sign changes occurring alongside this lunation, this New Moon can symbolize a subtle, yet highly potent transitional beginning point. And with both Mars and Uranus making a square aspect to one another shortly after their ingress into new signs, we can anticipate an influx of impulsiveness, rebelliousness, and freedom seeking desires as we seek to liberate ourselves from the monotony of outdated routines.

Of all the zodiac signs, Taurus is the most immovable and resistant to change. As a fixed, earth sign, Taurean energies prefer to conserve and maintain a predictable or dependable stability. However, with Uranus entering Taurus (where it will transit for the next seven years after solidly entering Taurus in early 2019), radical changes are on the horizon for many things we thought were permanent or solid fixtures in our lives or within the world. For those of us with planetary placements or critical angles in Taurus, sudden, unexpected, and revolutionary changes are likely.

Despite the intensity of Mars square Uranus and both planets changing signs simultaneously, this New Moon still stands as a solid grounding point. The New Moon’s wide opposition to Jupiter also gives this lunation an auspicious and optimistic edge but combined with Taurus’ impulse toward pleasure and self-gratification, we’ll need to be mindful of going over the top or taking on too much of a good thing. Combined with Mars/Uranus and Jupiter opposing the New Moon, this lunation can symbolize the first steps in a process of stretching some aspect of our lives beyond its normal parameters or expanding our expectations of what we’ve thought possible.

But the New Moon in Taurus reminds us that no matter what may be going on in our lives, we’ll need to keep calm and find our center before taking action. Mars’ square to Uranus is the first of three squares this year due to Mars’ retrograde cycle from June 26 through Aug. 27. This first square indicates that whatever actions we feel we need to take now could later be revised, or a new course of action could suddenly emerge later down the road. Keep that in mind because the combination of Mars/Uranus can ignite impulsive or rash decision making.

Still, the New Moon in Taurus invites us to chill out and trust the process that’s just now beginning for us. Change is an inevitable part of life, and every change is a necessary function of evolution. At this moment, you might notice some subtle (or not so subtle) signals that something you’ve long thought to be stubbornly resistant to change is in fact not as solid as you have come to believe. Reflect on the house that Taurus correlates with, and you’ll probably find some powerful indicators of what area of your life is about to undergo a reformation. In fact, no matter how placid things might look on the surface, the revolution has just begun.

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path


Unleash the Wildness: Full Moon in Scorpio 2018

Geysers of Tatio, San Pedro de Atacama, Chile; photo by Diego Delso via Wikimedia Commons.

Geysers of Tatio, San Pedro de Atacama, Chile; photo by Diego Delso via Wikimedia Commons.

Full Moon @ 9 Scorpio 39’

April 29, 2018

5:58 PM Los Angeles

8:58 PM New York

April 30, 2018

1:58 AM London

4:58 PM Dubai

8:58 AM Beijing

10:58 AM Sydney

12:58 PM Auckland

This month’s Full Moon occurs in tropical Scorpio, proceeding a conjunction of Mars and Pluto. Honesty, directness, and intensity are hallmarks of this lunation. A Scorpio Full Moon empowers us to seek and articulate truth. Quincunx aspects from both Mercury and Venus extend the reach of this Full Moon to our relationships and communicative exchanges, but with the Full Moon at the apex, critical adjustments are required in our interactions to create space for more authentic encounters, no matter how uncomfortable it might be.

With Mars, the ruler of the Full Moon separating from a conjunction with Pluto, primal instincts, impulses, and drives can be magnified to an extreme degree. Mars represents our ability to assert, defend ourselves, and claim our right to exist. Mars compels us to take action for the things that we want or desire. And from an evolutionary perspective, desires emanating from Mars originate from deeper motivations contained within the soul. As this Full Moon culminates, it can ignite awareness of how we may have held ourselves back from getting what we want, or it might confront us with limitations because we’ve overused our assertiveness, crossing too many lines.

The collective agreement we call “civilization” requires that we repress or subjugate the wild, untamed aspects within ourselves for the sake of maintaining order and control. For several thousands of years, human-created ideologies, religions, and philosophies have attempted to convince us that humanity is somehow elevated compared to the rest of the natural world. But as modern science progresses, we realize that there’s not much difference between ourselves and the rest of nature. We’re primal beings with primal needs, and no matter how “civilized” we’ve become, we cannot deny where we came from, and where we will return.

At the heart of Scorpio is a lucid awareness of the full spectrum of life and death and that we need humility to honor all of life. True humility comes from realizing our place in a larger, interconnected whole. While facing the truth of ourselves and what we are can be frightening and uncomfortable, living a lie is far more difficult to contend with. With this Full Moon’s wide conjunction with Jupiter, it invites us to dive in deep and explore what scares us. While we should be mindful of opening ourselves too much, revealing too much, or going too far too fast, this lunar culmination opens up emotional and psychic landscapes which need to be seen and felt.

In the watery depths of Scorpio, this is an emotionally sensitive Full Moon--instigating passion and releasing anxieties, desires, and hidden motivations. Or you might find it easier to glimpse dimensions of yourself and life typically concealed or forbidden. However you experience this Full Moon, either impactfully or subtly, look beyond appearances more deeply and push yourself a little further to see what you’ve been unable (or unwilling) to see. As intense as this Full Moon could be, the Sun in Taurus trine Saturn offers a grounding and solid foundation, helping us to patiently and consistently work toward personal and collective transformation.

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path


Surrender to the Data Flow: Full Moon in Gemini 2017

Light traces of a chain carousel, Viktorkirmes in Dülmen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany; photo by Dietmar Rabich, via Wikimedia Commons.

Light traces of a chain carousel, Viktorkirmes in Dülmen, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany; photo by Dietmar Rabich, via Wikimedia Commons.

Full Moon @ 11 Gemini 40'
Dec. 3
7:47 AM Los Angeles
10:47 AM New York
4:47 PM London
7:47 PM Dubai
9:47 PM Beijing
Dec. 4
12:47 AM Sydney
3:47 AM Auckland

This last Full Moon of 2017 occurs in tropical Gemini and is also a Supermoon. A Supermoon is a Full Moon that occurs at perigee (when the Moon is closest to the Earth) which results in a slightly larger Moon, especially when rising beside buildings, mountains, or trees. 

A Supermoon also seems to correlate with increased psychic upheaval and natural events (like anomalous weather or earthquakes). Collectively and personally, a Full Moon is a dynamic culmination of energy, and alongside Mercury's retrograde station, Mars and Uranus' opposition, and Jupiter trine Neptune, it's a critical breaking point in narratives both public and private. 

A Gemini Full Moon is likely to bring significant information, facts, data, and discussions to the surface. With Gemini ruler Mercury in retrograde, conjunct Saturn, we're looking at some heavy topics requiring careful articulation and analysis. But considering that Mercury is retrograde, fully processing this information is going to take some time. 

It might be best to avoid hasty conclusions. Consider everything purely hypothetically and in need of further testing and evaluation over the next three weeks. If you feel the need to rush into something, really step back and question whether that's an appropriate response. 

And if you feel confused, overwhelmed with options, choices, decisions, or overburdened with info overload, try reflection or meditation instead of a purely rational approach. With Neptune squaring the Full Moon axis, obfuscation of the facts is highly likely. So the truth is hard to come by with this Full Moon. Again, the next few weeks of Mercury's retrograde cycle can help us flesh that out. 

Ultimately, this Full Moon appears to topple some paradigms built upon theories which no longer have validity in the face of reality. Saturn's last breath in Sagittarius, conjunct Mercury retrograde, transitions us into a new understanding of the truth in light of unique insight, information, and perspectives. Open your mind and surrender to the data flow. A new reality is opening up, filled with possibilities. 

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path

The Revelation 12 Sign: Is It Really Astrology?

The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun by William Blake. 

The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun by William Blake. 

As many of my readers are probably well aware, I’m not a Christian. I’m going to assume that most of my readers probably aren’t either. But, to be respectful here, I’m not going to make any attempt to denounce Christianity in this article. My spiritual and philosophical views are rather varied, and my own personal “beliefs” (if you want to call them that) reflect a synthesis of many things that work for me personally, which means that organized religion doesn’t work for me.

Naturally, that conflicts with many of the beliefs of Christianity. I’m also an astrologer, but that doesn’t really conflict with Christianity entirely. Actually, there are Christian astrologers (and they’re good at what they do). I want to make it clear that I don’t believe in a lot of things that Christians believe, but I don’t think that’s a problem in discussing the legitimacy of the popular “Revelation 12 sign” and I think that many rational people within the Christian community will agree with me on many points in this article.

Also, this article isn’t my attempt to make anyone look stupid, or to dissuade anyone from believing in the prophetic context of The Book of Revelation (Revelation) or the spiritual significance of the Bible. However, it is my strong conviction that Revelation and the Bible were never intended to be literally interpreted. With that said, the Revelation 12 sign brings up an interesting discussion about astrology and biblical prophecy that needs to be addressed. Also, the Revelation 12 sign is another opportunity for astrologers to better inform the public about what we astrologers actually do because the debunking of the Revelation 12 sign from the scientific and astronomical communities is going to impact the public’s perception of what astrologers do, unfortunately.

The Revelation 12 sign is a theory proposing that on September 23, 2017, a certain “alignment” of planets and stars occurring over Jerusalem will signify the beginning of Jacob’s Trouble, also known as the Tribulation Period as outlined in Revelation. This “theory” suggests the literal fulfillment of the prophecy of Revelation, i.e. the rapture and the eventual end of the world. Now, “literal fulfillment” is the important point here.

Not all Christians agree on the interpretation of Revelation. For example, historicists look at the book through the broad lens of history. Preterists think that it describes events that happened in the 1st century or during the fall of the Roman empire. And futurist interpretations are really at the root of the Revelation 12 sign theory and suggest that Revelation describes future events. This falls into alignment with a literal or fundamentalist interpretation of biblical passages. However, an idealist or symbolic interpretation (something I would suggest if you take it seriously) looks at Revelation from a metaphoric standpoint.

If you study religion, theology, AND occultism, you soon realize the Bible’s esoteric nature. Basically, you could suggest that the Bible is filled with veiled astrological metaphors, which is true, but not the whole picture. You see, the astrology of the Bible is not really astrology as we understand it today, but rather something called astrotheology. Horoscopic astrology and astrotheology are quite different, as is the difference between alchemy and modern day chemistry. Astrotheology is more congruent with shamanism and mysticism and was an integral aspect of many ancient, religious cults. A rigorous discussion of this subject is beyond the scope of this article. There are many books on this subject and if you’re interested, I’d strongly suggest researching this.

For our purposes here, I’d like to point out that the “theory” of the Revelation 12 sign is not astrology as I would practice it or as many of my colleagues would practice it. The belief or theory of the Revelation 12 sign is more in alignment with astrotheology and prophecy, not western, horoscopic astrology. But before I go further, let’s flesh out this Revelation 12 sign. It all begins with this prophecy from Revelations 12: 1-2:

“A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of 12 stars. She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth … She gave birth to a son, a male child, destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod.”

An image of "The Revelation 12 Sign" on September 23, 2017 using Starry Night software. 

An image of "The Revelation 12 Sign" on September 23, 2017 using Starry Night software. 

On September 23, just after the equinox and the New Moon, proponents of the Revelation 12 sign suggest that this prophecy from Revelation will literally happen as an alignment of planets and stars in the sky. As you can see in the image above, the woman is said to represent the constellation of Virgo; the Sun is at her shoulders (“clothed with the Sun”), the Moon is at her feet, three planets in the constellation Leo (Mercury, Venus, and Mars) are visually “aligned” “above her head” along with nine of the most visible stars in this constellation (making 12 “stars”), and the planet Jupiter is stationing direct near her abdominal area.

Jupiter is said to symbolize the male child this woman is giving birth to. The fact that Jupiter is recently stationing direct, which means that it’s shifting from retrograde (an apparent backwards movement through the sky) to direct motion, further reinforces the theory and belief that Jupiter is symbolic of the birth of a child in Virgo’s abdomen, because this retrograde period takes 42 days, which is the approximate period of gestation in the womb.

Now, it’s certainly intriguing and this particular setup of planets is quite rare, but let’s get real here. This isn’t the first time this kind of alignment has occurred since Revelation was written. In an article featured on The Catholic Astronomer, astronomer Christopher M. Graney, pointed out that in the last one thousand years, similar configurations have happened at least four times: September 24, 1827, September 6, 1483, September 5, 1293, and September 14, 1056. I’m very grateful for Mr. Graney’s work in finding these past configurations, because I really didn’t have the time or interest to do this myself.

You can use an astronomy software program (like Starry Night which I use, or Stellarium) to easily verify these dates for yourself, which I did. While these past configurations are not identical, they’re extremely close and are enough to warrant a validation of this prophecy at those times as well. Maybe the rapture already happened in 1483 and we just haven’t realized it yet?

It’s also possible that Revelation, if it has any prophetic or symbolic value, was probably never meant to be taken as a vision of literal future events at all. It’s possible that Revelation, and the Bible itself, are filled with veiled astrological metaphors meant only for those initiates who could decode it and understand the symbolism. It was extremely common for alchemists and initiates of mystery religions and cults to write material coded in esoteric symbolism. This was a way of keeping non-initiates from understanding the true message, cult secrets, and also a way of protecting the secrecy of the cult from persecution. The popularity of the Revelation 12 sign reflects the exoteric understanding of Christianity, and it misses the likely truth that Christianity today is not what it was over two thousand years ago.

The same is true of astrology. In fact, astrologers today are just now uncovering the techniques, beliefs, and practices of astrologers who lived thousands of years ago. We’re just now beginning to understand the origin of western astrology. Even with this newfound material, we still barely understand how these ancient astrologers practiced, how they understood time and space, or how they even thought. In light of these discoveries, it’s obvious that early Greco-Roman astrology and the astrotheology of the Bible are not the same thing, by any means.

In fact, modern astrologers don’t actually use the constellations. The large majority of astrologers today use either the tropical or sidereal zodiacs. The signs of these zodiacs are named after the constellations, but are not the same thing in a technical sense. The tropical zodiac was already in use long before the Bible was written, and was used in tandem with the sidereal zodiac during the height of Hellenistic astrology during the reign of the Roman empire.

When astronomers try to say that your Sun sign is actually the sign before it, they apparently don’t know that western astrologers don’t use the constellations at all, but rather the tropical zodiac, constructed from the Sun’s seasonal cycle. The sidereal zodiac attempts to line up the signs with the constellations, but fails to do so completely because the signs of the sidereal zodiac occur at 30 degree equal increments, while the constellations do not. The constellation of Virgo is 40 degrees wide!

The reason astrologers no longer use the constellations is due to something called precession of the equinoxes. This is the gradual shifting of the constellations relative to seasonal points and planetary alignments over a period of thousands of years. For example, roughly two thousand years ago, during the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere, the Sun was in the constellation of Aries, but today it occurs near the end of the constellation of Pisces.

This is also where the belief in the astrological ages comes from, and the suggestion that we’re moving into the “Age of Aquarius”  since the Sun on the equinox is moving from the constellation Pisces to Aquarius. But, to go back to Revelation 12, I don’t think that this particular passage from the Bible was referring to a specific “alignment” of planets on September 23, 2017. In fact, whenever this configuration occurs, it happens near the Sun, where no one could ever possibly see it! You won’t see any of these planets or stars on Sep. 23. You’ll only see the Sun, and I wouldn’t recommend looking at it (unless you still have some leftover eclipse glasses).

From The Book of Revelation ; a study of the last prophetic book of Holy Scripture by Clarence Larkin, 1919. 

From The Book of Revelation ; a study of the last prophetic book of Holy Scripture by Clarence Larkin, 1919. 

This “great sign” that “appears” in the sky doesn’t actually appear at all. Doesn’t anyone think this is a little suspect? Or did the prophet of Revelation know that two thousand years later we would have the astronomical software to see the “great sign?” I’m thinking probably not. Also, referring to the planets Venus, Mercury, and Mars and the constellation Leo as the “twelve stars” that appear above the woman’s head, is really some serious twisting of the facts to make things fit perfectly.

There are actually more than nine stars in Leo. The nine “stars” in the the Revelation 12 sign are the most visible stars in the constellation, but there are several more, as well as above the Virgin’s head that are technically not in Leo. Also, while we know that ancient people may have referred to planets as stars, they actually knew the difference. The word planet is Greek for wanderer, which refers to a star that moves. While they may have thought of planets as “wandering stars”, they knew there was a difference between stars and “wanderers” because they had a word for it.

The constellation of Virgo also refers to a virgin! Yes, last time I checked, with the exception of the birth of Christ and Mary’s supposed immaculate conception, virgin’s don’t give birth to children. Okay, that’s not a strong point, but I thought it was kind of funny. The Revelation 12 sign is also somehow tied into the belief in “Planet X” (and a whole host of other viral internet ideologies like the “Flat Earth Theory”). The belief in Planet X originates from the work of Zecharia Sitchin and his many books about the fabled planet “Nibiru”, but particularly his most popular, The Twelfth Planet.

According to Sitchin, Nibiru enters the inner solar system periodically, close enough to cause weather changes and massive destruction on Earth. Sitchin primarily made connections between Mesopotamian artifacts to support his thesis that Nibiru is a planet inhabited by a race of extraterrestrial beings called the Annunaki, who descend upon the Earth whenever their planet is in the neighborhood. Sitchin suggested that these aliens actually created the human race, and that the deluge mythologies from Mesopotamia and the bible actually refer to Nibiru.

Now, how Christian conspiracy theorists on YouTube are getting caught up in Sitchin's literal interpretations of mesopotamian mythologies is beyond me (unless you decide that the bible is now an account of aliens creating humans). I do think it’s possible that extraterrestrial beings may have interfered with human evolution. Do I whole-heartedly believe that? No. But I’m not going to dismiss that as a possibility. It’s plausible, and it’s an interesting hypothesis. Also, there is much credence to a Planet X.

In fact, astronomers are still looking for a large planet, known as Planet Nine, that’s creating gravitational anomalies in the Extreme Trans Neptunian Objects, but it still remains hypothetical. Could this planet be Nibiru? Is it coming into its cyclic passage through the solar system creating havoc and destruction on the planet? I doubt it. And if Nibiru actually does exist, is it inhabited by a race of extraterrestrial beings? I’m going to say, probably not. These are all fascinating ideas and speculations, and they make for great works of fiction, but there just isn’t enough evidence to convince me of their actual validity (and I’ve actually read all of Sitchin's books).

The hypothosized orbit of Planet Nine; image via Wikimedia Commons.

The hypothosized orbit of Planet Nine; image via Wikimedia Commons.

So, why would anyone believe in the Revelation 12 sign or the planet Nibiru? Why do people periodically get swept up in paranoid fantasies about the end of the world? If you go back through history, especially since the writing of Revelation, these kinds of predictions and speculations have been going on for a very long time. It’s nothing new. I mean, let’s go back to medieval Europe during the bubonic plague and imagine what they thought was happening as they watched everyone around them dying (with Revelation probably at the forefront of their minds). The Revelation 12 sign is not really that unique. As we have seen, it’s happened before.

I think that these reactions are a natural response to uncertainty and change. We’re living in a world and society that’s becoming increasingly complex and fast paced. Everything is changing, and rapidly. Technological progress and scientific understanding are happening at an increasingly faster rate. We’re living in a period of human evolution that’s probably never happened before, and if it has, we have no record of it. As a result of this increasing complexity and advancement, people get scared. They want to have some sense of control over what’s happening.

It’s possible that what’s happening in the world, for the most part, is beyond our control. For astrologers, we look at a world possessed by mythology. I believe that these myths have power and that they influence people on a very real, psychological dimension. I also think that the Christian mythology is important, and it’s influenced all aspects of our culture, even within the institutions of scientific skepticism. Again, that’s a lengthy conversation, but I point that out because I don’t think anyone is immune to myth even if they don’t believe in a literal battle of “good versus evil”. That battle is still being waged within the unconscious of all people influenced by western culture.

I think that humanity is in a process of awakening. To me, this process is endless, because it is the process of evolution itself. As we awaken, we realize the vast complexity of reality, and at each stage, we have varying reactions to that. Here in the U.S., the current political establishment appeals to a percentage of the population that wants to revert back to a more simplistic period of American history. We’re seeing this trend not just in the United States, but across the world. For an astrologer, this appears to be an archetypal inundation within the collective consciousness, and understanding it objectively helps us keep some distance from being taken over by it.

But the solution to what’s happening in the world lies at the heart of evolution: adaptation. I think that humans have survived some extremely difficult situations throughout our time here. Given the advancements in science and technology, I think we’re more equipped to survive now than we have ever been. I think it’s time that we embraced change and chaos, and do what we can to continue our journey here on earth, whatever that looks like.

In conclusion, many astronomers (including Mr. Graney mentioned above) go on to debunk astrology along with the Revelation 12 sign. This is unfortunate, because their discussion of astrology is always poorly researched. It’s clear that astronomers don’t study astrology, and therefore are not qualified to make any claims about it. They often use the same rhetoric in their discussions, emphasizing poorly written Sun sign horoscopes, as if those represent the entire field of astrology and those who practice it. This is entirely untrue, and forges a very limited perception of astrology in the public eye.

To compare the fanatical beliefs and astrotheological prophecies of the proponents of the Revelation 12 sign with the entire field of horoscopic astrology, is rather absurd. Unfortunately, this is a common trend with astronomers and scientists, who, with their very narrow, ad hoc understanding of astrology, try to “debunk” something they know very little about. To experienced, professional astrologers, who study, research, and practice astrology their entire lives, the Revelation 12 sign is insignificant astrologically speaking, but it’s interesting because it opens a discussion about the Bible and astrotheology as a whole. We could suggest that the believers of the Revelation 12 sign are actually debunking the literal interpretation of the Bible through their unwitting obsession with astrotheology.

The myth of Revelation, however, is definitely significant from a symbolic or archetypal perspective, and I think that it’s playing out within each of us, and in the world, whether we believe that or not. That is an entire discussion by itself, but for now, I’ll leave you with this: the world isn’t literally coming to an end. The Sun will be around another 5 billion years, and the Earth will be habitable for at least another billion. A meteor strike or nearby supernova explosion could always happen, and yet the Earth would likely still be here, though we might not. But our demise isn’t the demise of the Earth. It’ll move on with its evolution, so let’s move on with ours. These myths may actually be part of that evolutionary process, and working through them within our own lives and on the world stage, may be a very crucial piece of our human story and evolution here on Earth.

Shine On: Total Solar Eclipse in Leo 2017

Total eclipse of the sun taken in Chita, Russia on March 9, 1997; photo by  名古屋太郎  via Wikimedia Commons. 

Total eclipse of the sun taken in Chita, Russia on March 9, 1997; photo by 名古屋太郎 via Wikimedia Commons. 


Total Solar Eclipse @ 28 tropical Leo 53'

August 21, 2017

11:30 AM Los Angeles

2:30 PM New York

1:30 PM Chicago

7:30 PM London

2:30 AM Hong Kong

4:30 AM Sydney

6:30 AM Aukland

*The U.S. times above are for the precise conjunction of Sun and Moon as measured from the center of the Earth, not the times for the maximum phase of the eclipse if you plan to view it. Also, NEVER watch a solar eclipse without using eclipse glasses or a special filter. For eclipse safety and viewing times, please read this article. 

This much anticipated total solar eclipse in tropical Leo is here (much anticipated for those visiting or living in the United States, especially those on the path of totality). For thousands of years, eclipses were viewed by many cultures as negative omens, often feared and revered by those who witnessed them, and for obvious reasons. Especially with a total solar eclipse, the experience is mesmerizing, visceral, and eerie. In a little over an hour, the Moon passes over the Sun, creating a darkening of the sky, a drastic drop in temperature, and during the few minutes of totality, spectators witness spectacular visual effects such as the appearance of the solar corona, the emergence of stars and planets typically hidden, and sometimes, in rare cases, shadow bands (which appear as shimmering, wavy shadows on white or very lightly colored objects below). 

It’s no wonder that our ancestors viewed eclipses with terror and came up with various superstitions about them. Science has done much to dispel this superstition, and has given us a more precise technical understanding of why eclipses happen, but science has also stripped the magic and archetypal reality away from the modern mind. Those who witness a total solar eclipse cannot deny their own experience which is profound and unforgettable. In that moment, a beauty and power that’s hard to describe overtakes you. Even the most staunch materialist will be consumed with awe by the sheer magnificence and mystery of the experience, even sometimes drawn to tears. Something primal inside of us responds to this, even if it’s just a mechanical fluke of nature. As an astrologer, I avoid making outlandish claims and speculations when it comes to astrology, but I also study the subject and observe its relevance in my life and the life of friends, family, clients, and notable figures.

And because of that, I can say with much certainty that eclipses, like any other astronomical event, have a direct correlation with human life. There is convincing evidence that throughout history, eclipses that occur over a specific region perceptibly impact that place in significant and notable ways. Aside from their historical implications, they can accelerate interpersonal changes, life transitions, and amplify emotional and psychological constructs within us. And collectively, a rapid series of events begins to unfold. What will happen with this particular eclipse? I don’t know concretely, and I won’t pretend that I do. Eclipses are hard to understand while they happen, and because they tend to develop weeks, months, and even years after the event itself, they’re more discernible in hindsight. But, especially with a total solar eclipse, the symbolism speaks volumes. The Moon, a symbol of the irrational, unconscious, and hidden dimensions of life experience, momentarily overtakes the light of the Sun. 

The Sun symbolizes the rational, apollonian archetype related to the visible world we see and interact with. A solar eclipse is a powerful New Moon, which is a symbolic death and rebirth of the lunar cycle. Thus, what I can say with confidence is that a large shadow will be cast across the United States and a powerful, unconscious narrative/mythos will overtake the collective mind of this country. Many people will be swept up in a collective drama with origins lying deep within the collective psyche, or what psychologist Carl Jung called the collective unconscious (the repository of repressed psychic content within a given culture). We will also witness some very drastic external changes happening in this nation from here on out, especially since the U.S. is nearing its first Pluto return alongside a conjunction of Saturn and Pluto in 2020, and will also witness another total solar eclipse in 2024. What that will all look like, I don’t know exactly, but I think we are already seeing it emerge on the world stage as I write these words. It is a dynamic process of death, rebirth, and an upwelling of contraction.

A viewer of the Solar Eclipse on Aug 11, 1999 in Paris, France; photo by Arnaudh via Wikimedia Commons. 

A viewer of the Solar Eclipse on Aug 11, 1999 in Paris, France; photo by Arnaudh via Wikimedia Commons. 

I’d suggest looking into the work of scholars who specialize in studying historical and economic trends, as well as mundane astrologers with that kind of analytical expertise for a better understanding the unfolding historical narrative. My focus is more so on the personal dimensions of astrological application. For a more mundane perspective on this eclipse, do read my article here. This New Moon/total solar eclipse occurs at the final degrees of Leo. Leo is a fire sign of yang polarity. The solar eclipse also creates a fire grand trine between Saturn in Sagittarius and Uranus in Aries. The trine to Uranus is particularly significant in its precision, and can empower the rebellious, revolutionary, and unstable elements surrounding this eclipse. Personally, it can feel like a dramatic, passionate, and creative uprising within each of us (as well as collectively). This solar eclipse seeks to awaken within us a renewed desire for life, vitality, and self-expression which serves to liberate and free us from limitations and past constraints.

As always with Uranus, previous barriers and obstacles are suddenly and unexpectedly cleared, making way for new avenues of experience and opportunities to express individuality. For good or ill, this eclipse is empowering individuals to step out and gain more visibility in the world. The wider trine to Saturn can help us gain more traction, as well as bring forth the fruits of hard work, discipline, and sacrifice. If you’re feeling motivated to bring forth your creative energy now, you should feel a sense of greater confidence and courage to do so. If you’re unclear of what you want to create or express exactly, this eclipse can help catalyze movement by igniting inspiration and motivation to make some drastic changes within yourself and within your personal life. These changes will unfold and develop in the coming weeks and months. 

With the south nodal lunar eclipse in Aquarius just two weeks ago, we crossed a threshold of accelerated release and dissipation of past patterns, attitudes, and behaviors that have been limiting the flow of life force, creativity, passion, and vitality in our lives. This north nodal solar eclipse in Leo is like a great awakening of excitement and zeal. While certainly we can take some positive steps, and gradually begin expressing our talents and willpower, there’s a negative side to these symbols too. Leo can indicate a blindness as a result of overt subjectivity and egocentricity. It can also incite an over dramatization of the ego (or false self) which can empower others to overstep boundaries and impose themselves tactlessly and harshly. Be mindful that what you’re expressing now is actually in alignment with your authentic self, not something imposed on you externally. Eclipses can also relate to a difficult transition or even a sudden fading away of the past, which can be painful for some.

The positive side of Leo is the ability to bring forth our creative, child-like self in healthy ways which helps to inspire and enliven others. Tantrums and misguided revolts are an expression of the fear based components of the inner child and will work to harm or otherwise keep us from fulfilling our true potential during this eclipse. Remember, that the greatest of all revolutions are within. Uranus’ close trine to this eclipse encourages us to liberate ourselves and gain more autonomy and independence to be who we are. If you’re feeling the need to step into this fire, do so. This eclipse will express both the positive and negative faces of these energies. Seeing that western culture is rather unconscious of its own myths and demons, the demons are likely to run amok here. But you have the power to face your own, and by doing that, you’ll be creating not only the life you want and deserve, but also helping to bring us all back to wholeness.  


Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help.

Follow me on Instagram for weekly astrological updates.

Stepping into the Light: Lunar Eclipse in Aquarius 2017

Light beams into an Arizona "slot canyon" near Page, Arizona; photo by Carol M. Highsmith.

Light beams into an Arizona "slot canyon" near Page, Arizona; photo by Carol M. Highsmith.

Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse @ 15 Aquarius 25'

August 7, 2017

11:11 AM Pacific

2:11 PM Eastern

My experience of eclipse season is always different, but suffused with mystery each time. Eclipses can generate an awareness of something larger, more powerful running the show. Since so much seems to be happening due to a mysterious “acceleration” effect (of which eclipses tend to correlate with), eclipse season can feel overwhelming and we can easily get caught up in dramas and events that feel beyond our control. That’s why it’s important to be mindful. Keep your focus on your thoughts, emotions, and reactions. Find your center. I’m not suggesting that you suppress or avoid anything that arises, but do keep yourself in check. Eclipses have the power to poke holes in our ego/identity, revealing things deep within us that we’ve been avoiding or totally unaware of. Syncing up with Mercury’s retrograde cycle, this eclipse season is powerful and dynamic in terms of changing our focus, direction, priorities, and perceptions.

Eclipses also reverberate through time. They connect us to the past and future in deep, encompassing ways. Whatever we’re currently dealing with has its origins long before this moment and will have consequences for months in the future. Eclipses are not isolated events, but a long process of change and reversal of circumstances. Since this is a south nodal, lunar eclipse in tropical Aquarius, we are working on releasing, moving on, and then stepping more fully into the future after the solar eclipse on Aug 21. That means that the themes you’ll be dealing with during this lunar eclipse will be issues from the past: moving beyond stagnant attitudes, habits, and perceptions that are no longer useful. In the two weeks between this lunar eclipse and the following Aug 21 solar eclipse, we’re in a deep process of archetypal death.

With Mercury’s retrograde cycle beginning in between the lunar and solar eclipses, and with the usual nature of eclipses in general, keep in mind that whatever begins within this two week time may not go in the direction of your intentions, and may in fact represent a series of “dying” circumstances. That’s because the Moon is waning from Full to New, and thus in a process of decay. And since eclipses are simply more powerful New or Full Moons, after this Full Moon, we’re heading for a more pronounced death/rebirth at the New Moon/solar eclipse. The shadow of Aquarius contains feelings of alienation, social rejection, or perpetually working against society/culture out of fear or even righteousness. It can reveal a victim consciousness due to social exclusion, an attitude that is essentially antisocial (against maintaining or creating cohesion and peace) or unconsciously rebellious (rebel without a cause).

Look to see how this has shown up in your life, and how these patterns have been in the background somewhere. This lunar eclipse/Full Moon is a culminating release of energy. It helps to shift us forward into the north nodal Leo solar eclipse on Aug 21. That will relate to the need to overcome fear of rejection and step into our creative and expressive power. Or it can relate to the need to overcome intentional isolation and righteousness into a more active participation in the life drama. Where have you been a spectator in your life? Have you withheld your gifts out of fear that others would judge, persecute, or seek to devalue them? Or have you been mindlessly rebelling due to an inability to accept your uniqueness thereby suppressing your true individuality? Obviously not every eclipse will impact everyone the same (or much at all) but if these questions strongly resonate with you, then you’re more likely impacted (check planets or angles in the horoscope touched by 14 degrees of Aquarius and 28 degrees of Leo).

With Jupiter making a helpful and dominating trine, it blesses this lunar eclipse and offers help, assistance, and support when we need it most. This trine from Jupiter in Libra suggests looking beyond your own preconceived notions of what’s happening in your life, or intentionally reaching beyond yourself to contribute, offer assistance, or even guidance to others. However this eclipse shows up for you, this Jupiter trine helps us to make constructive use of these changes and to find compromise, common ground, and peace with others. These themes will not only show up in your own life, but will appear on the world stage in some way. These external events reflect a collective process of change and evolution, revealing the inter connectivity of all beings and things. Take a moment with this eclipse to see how you can transcend any tendencies of working against the social current and instead see where you can jump in and make peace where it’s needed most.

Be sure to read your Kosmic HorIzon Forecast for this lunar eclipse. These bi-weekly forecasts will be FREE until mid-September! Sign up for my newsletter below to receive news and updates.

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help.

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Insights into "The Great American Eclipse"

Total solar eclipse on July 22, 2009; photo by kubotake via Wikimedia Commons. 

Total solar eclipse on July 22, 2009; photo by kubotake via Wikimedia Commons. 

As usual with rare astronomical/astrological events, a lot of speculation, rumor, hype and superstition surround it. The unfortunate part of this is that it spreads a lot of fear, anxiety, and then, when some momentous event doesn’t in fact happen, it reinforces a perception among the general public that astrology again failed and got a lot of people worked up over nothing. As you probably now know, next week’s lunar eclipse leads into a total solar eclipse in Leo just two weeks later on Aug 21. It will only appear as a total solar eclipse for those residing in Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, south eastern Georgia, and South Carolina. For everyone else in the U.S., it will appear as a partial eclipse (still a pretty cool experience).

As you may or may not know, as an astrologer I stay away from making radical predictions and claims. While I’m not completely against the idea that there are many predetermined events in life, I think that for the most part, consciousness can alter and change our experiences. I think that life is a mixture of fate and free-will. So often, our predictions fail to manifest as we expect them to. That could be partially a result of faulty technique, but I think it more often has to do with the fact that astrological symbolism is multivalent. Each sign and planet has an array of possible expressions. Even with a finely tuned, time-tested technique, astrologers will never be 100 percent accurate in predicting the future. One thing that I’ve learned about astrology, especially the more I engage with it consciously, is that it’s so often hundreds of steps ahead of me.

I’m more often completely surprised by how things actually turn out. In hindsight, I look back and the event certainly fit the symbolism, but never could I have imagined the end result. I think most of us experience life like that. Astrology shouldn’t be used to control your choices or dread the future, but rather to help you make more conscious and informed choices. Rarely do the worse-case scenarios ever manifest as we feared. With that said, and considering where the U.S. currently is politically, this event is pretty interesting. The first thing to consider is that eclipses are not isolated events. Eclipses open a portal in the zodiac that becomes an active hot zone. Planets that cross over or aspect the degree of the eclipse can trigger its manifestations for weeks, months, or even years into the future. The first step in analyzing this eclipse is to consider that it’s emphasizing the United States because it will be visible here and cross from coast to coast, which means that it’s making a statement about this country. The next step is to look at what kind of eclipse it is. Since it’s a solar eclipse, it’s basically a supercharged New Moon. It symbolizes a dramatic end and beginning of something.

Death is a natural part of life. That’s an obvious statement, but so often we choose to forget it for good reasons. We’re here to live our lives; there’s no sense in dwelling on death while in the thick of life. But I think every nation, or anything that gains considerable power in the world, creates an illusion that it’s somehow omnipotent and immortal. As an American myself, I grew up with this belief pounded into my head that my country was the “greatest” and would never end. I obviously didn’t grow up to believe that. All empires meet their end. Everything dies. While we might not have the capacity to comprehend it, the Sun will die too. The entire Universe will cease to exist. These unsettling thoughts threaten the ego, that dominating part of our consciousness that has gained such power over the western mind.

Empires come and go, just as people do. As the Buddhists would say, “all is impermanent.” I think eclipses are fascinating because they generate this very real sense that there’s something more powerful than we are. Like an earthquake or severe storm, we’re suddenly minimal in comparison. Our existence is instantly put into perspective. It would seem that this eclipse kind of sends that message to America: “you’re not the center of the universe and there are greater powers than you.” You can interpret that in many ways. I’m certainly not predicting the fall of the American Empire over this eclipse, but it may well signify the beginning of an end in terms of how we’ve perceived ourselves as a nation. Consider the tropical sign of Leo, and consider how this eclipse occurs at the end, the anaretic degrees of this sign.

Leo is a fixed, fire sign of yang polarity. It’s ruled by the Sun. It carries this symbolism of gravitas, presence, and a sense of permanent ruler ship and power. The Sun is the center of our solar system. The Sun forces all planets to orbit around it, but as I just said, the Sun will not have rule forever. It too will die. I think this illusion in the American psyche of being the dominating and fixed power center of the world needs a serious reality check. It has mobilized a movement of people who seriously lack perspective, and I think that’s a dangerous thing. I think the United States needs some humility and respect of other perspectives. And I think it’s highly possible that this eclipse signifies the beginning of the end of this illusion. Many would say that began long ago, but I’m not sure it’s reached the collective consciousness of the United States just yet. Perhaps it soon will.

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help. Click here for personal readings. 

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President Donald Trump and the U.S. Horoscope

As you may be aware, this “Great American Eclipse” touches the horoscope of President Donald Trump. You’ve probably heard of him. I’m going to steer clear of expressing any personal bias or opinions about him here. The eclipse touches on Donald Trump’s Ascendant. This is the sign that was rising on the eastern horizon at the time he came screaming into the world (I imagine he was probably pretty vocal with a 10th house Gemini Sun, but maybe not). In modern astrology, the Ascendant is the cusp of the first house, and in ancient, Hellenistic astrology (which tended to favor whole sign places over houses), the first house was known as the Helm. In simple words, this place originally signified where we steer the ship, that is to say, how we direct our lives. In modern, evolutionary astrology, the Ascendant is a symbol of our persona or outward mask. This is separate from our public mask. It’s more personal and one on one. It’s what my teacher, Steven Forrest, calls the mask we wear at a cocktail party.

I would argue that the mask we see of Donald Trump is more described by his 10th house and the sign that falls on his Midheaven because it’s what he shows to the public (though you’ll soon see that his Ascendant and Midheaven are interchangeable). Using equal houses, Trump has his Sun conjunct Uranus and the North Node in Gemini in his 10th house. We see a statement about a person who has greatly emphasized public and career matters (10th house) and that he’s using radical and rebellious vocal expression as a means of getting ahead in life (Uranus conjunct Sun). With a strong 10th house statement, Donald Trump is deeply concerned with status, reputation, and making a stamp on the world. With Uranus making such a statement here as well, Donald Trump is a rebel and has an eccentric public persona. With Taurus on his Midheaven, immediately we see a fixed, stubborn, and determined edge to this. Taurus is an immovable sign, and it symbolizes energy that stands tall and firmly entrenched.

The ruler of his Midheaven is Venus which is separating from a conjunction with Saturn in Cancer in the 11th house. This reveals that a big part of his public image depicts him networking and schmoozing, but also gives a traditional, conservative side (Saturn in Cancer) to his otherwise eccentric and radical Uranus vibes. The 11th house is known traditionally as the house of dreams, hopes, and friends. With Saturn placed in Cancer and conjunct Venus, this placement also shows a person who is fated to have a history of separations and challenges in his friendships and relationships (which will be very much public knowledge). Also, from a modern perspective, this Venus/Saturn conjunction in Cancer paints a person whose public image is predicated upon laying out nostalgic dreams and visions of the “good old days”, promising security, safety, and practical goals. Do we see his, “Make America Great Again” slogan emerging from these symbols?

Donald Trump's chart (inner chart) with transits (outer wheel) during the total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017. Note the eclipse to the left of the chart on his Ascendant. Equal houses and tropical zodiac.

Donald Trump's chart (inner chart) with transits (outer wheel) during the total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017. Note the eclipse to the left of the chart on his Ascendant. Equal houses and tropical zodiac.

President Donald Trump’s Saturn/Venus conjoins Mercury in the U.S. Sibley horoscope. These nostalgic dreams and visions hit a powerful chord in the American mind. Donald Trump’s Ascendant falls in the last degrees of Leo, and is ruled by the Sun. This brings us back to his equal 10th house Gemini placement conjunct Uranus. Thus, there is a strong synergy between his personal persona and public image. With a Leo Ascendant, Donald Trump’s personal style is one that is showy, dramatic, attention getting, and loud. With Mars close to his Ascendant, there is an element of assertiveness, aggressiveness, and a “warrior” like quality to this. Mars, the planet of war, reveals a highly combative and forceful persona which amplifies the fire element in his mask.

This eclipse represents on one level a death of that image and style, and the way he makes decisions, choices, and asserts himself in the world. Hitting an angle of the chart (the Ascendant) is also very significant as the beginning of a critical shift in his consciousness and personal life. On another level, the solar eclipse requires a rebirth of his personal and public image, one that is likely to be dramatic in its change and transformation. Thus, what we could expect here is to witness a major shift in how Donald Trump represents himself, which may come as a result of a crisis or challenge to his reputation. This will utterly change the freedom he has to make decisions and lead others. Since the first house and Ascendant are tied into themes involving leadership as well, we see the death and rebirth of a leader in one way or another. How exactly that manifests is partly up to fate, and partly up to Donald Trump’s own free will.

Also, the first house and Ascendant represent the physical body, and it’s possible we may see some health related issues arise from this. From these symbols we can ascertain that Donald Trump is going to be “eclipsed” in the coming weeks and months. What that actually looks like, we’ll soon see. The eclipse occurs in the ninth equal house/place in the U.S. Sibley chart. This chart is the most commonly used by astrologers, and really proved its validity during the events of Sept 11, 2011. In traditional astrology, the ninth house was known as the house of the “king” or “God” and governed issues dealing with foreign travel/relations, divination, religion, and even astrology. Since we live in different times (though technically not much different), we can conclude that this “Great American Eclipse” will change much of our national ideology/beliefs, foreign relations (policies) as well as our “king”, which we could say symbolically represents the President of the United States.

The U.S. Sibley horoscope (center chart) with transits during the solar eclipse on Aug 21, 2017 (outer wheel). Note the eclipse making an opposition to the Moon in Aquarius in the third house. Equal Houses and tropical zodiac. 

The U.S. Sibley horoscope (center chart) with transits during the solar eclipse on Aug 21, 2017 (outer wheel). Note the eclipse making an opposition to the Moon in Aquarius in the third house. Equal Houses and tropical zodiac. 

In evolutionary astrology, the ninth house deals with encountering shocking perspectives and the formation of personal ethics, philosophy, or worldview. Its shadow exhibits dogmatism and defensiveness against foreign views and perspectives. So for the country as a whole, there’s a dramatic shift in our perspective as a nation, and a change in our national ideology. The eclipse also makes a challenging opposition to the natal Moon in Aquarius in the third house. This Aquarian Moon, looked at through a modern lens, symbolizes the “revolutionary” soul of America and our need to be a “progressive” and rebellious nation via the Aquarian association with Uranus. The third house came to be known as a house dealing with communication in a broad sense, though traditionally it was called “Goddess”, and dealt topically with issues surrounding travel, relatives, and siblings.

I believe that the third house association with communication is an important modern shift in its symbolism. It can indicate the transmission of news and gossip. American culture is so highly influenced by the media which now expresses itself mostly through the internet. We see here an eclipsing of our media, and also the revolutionary spirit of America. This is being directly challenged by the “King” as well as a foreign influence or through foreign relations. It will stimulate much gossip and theorizing to take place surrounding these issues, or will utterly change how Americans communicate over time. I’m sure that given the nature of recent events and speculations, we could imagine all kinds of scenarios here.

From the evolutionary view, the third house deals with the ability to form unbiased perceptions. Opposite the ninth, the third house supports the asking of questions as opposed espousing a definitive underlying truth. In it’s shadow, similar to the ninth, it seeks to defend a given perception of reality and limit the flow of information, leading to a scattered pursuit of useless facts and ideas. It’s interesting that the themes of these two houses are rather hot topics with the current presidency. It’s presented us with a lot of questions about what the truth really is, who to actually trust, and whether the facts are really what we think they are.

I think theses symbols also speak to the reality of the times we currently live in. We are at a point in this country where we need to be very careful of simplifying and polarizing the issues on the table. I don’t think it’s as simple as making one side “good” and another side “bad”. There isn’t much of anything in life that’s that simplistic. Life is complicated and messy. The truth isn’t so clean cut and dry. I think that as we approach this eclipse, Americans need to be really careful of taking any particular side, no matter how hard that is. If you really want the truth, these symbols suggest moving beyond any rigid assumptions you might have about reality, and choosing to look beyond your usual sources of information to find it. I think that’s important advice, and something we might find to be a necessity in the very near future.

One last observation here. The Moon rules the eighth house in the U.S. horoscope, which is traditionally called the house of death. That's always sounds a little ominous, but it also deals with issues pertaining to shared resources and debt. There are several critical placements in this sign and house, including the Sun and Mercury, and if using whole sign houses, both Jupiter and Venus as well. This was not seen as a favorable house for placements in earlier traditions, though even in modern astrology the eighth house is not a particularly comfortable place. It invokes a sense of having to face uncomfortable realities, usually pertaining to ones mortality. It's possible this eclipse will dredge up some unsettling truths which will deeply effect our national security and may well impact America's shared resources. 

Consider that currently, America's only major economic export is war. This sad truth is what led many to believe that Donald Trump could restore our self-sufficiency as a nation. I think the reality of whether or not this is possible is going to very quickly sink in here. And on a basic symbolic level, the Moon is a statement about our nation's heart, hearth, and safety. This eclipse brings into the collective consciousness of the nation an awakening realization to the threat that not all is as safe and secure as we might imagine. The synchronicity of that correlating with the eclipse hitting Donald Trump's Ascendant reveals that as President, he must alter his image somehow, to get the public to earn his trust as a leader. In looking at his current ratings, that may be a very difficult challenge. 

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help.

Follow me on Instagram for weekly astrological updates.

Reaching the Mars Zone: Sun/Mars Conjunction 2017

Dan Steele on an Eastern Illinois University Relay team, via Wikimedia Commons.

Dan Steele on an Eastern Illinois University Relay team, via Wikimedia Commons.

We're reaching a conjunction of Sun and Mars (exact July 26). If you looked down at the solar system while hovering above it from space, you would see a direct alignment of Earth, Sun, and Mars. The last conjunction, when Mars was on the far side of the Sun (where we can’t see it), was June 14, 2015 (this will be important to consider, so bear with me here). The last opposition (when Mars was behind the Earth opposing the Sun), was last year during Mars’ retrograde cycle on May 22, 2016. Thus, a Sun/Mars conjunction or opposition alternates roughly each year. You don’t need to understand the technical details, but check out the images below for a visual. The main point is that the last conjunction was in June of 2015, so what’s shifting now relates to what began or shifted at that time.

        The Sun/Mars conjunction July 26, 2017 as seen                 from a heliocentric (Sun centered) perspective

        The Sun/Mars conjunction July 26, 2017 as seen                 from a heliocentric (Sun centered) perspective

The Sun/Mars retrograde opposition May 22, 2016 as viewed from a heliocentric (Sun centered) perspective

The Sun/Mars retrograde opposition May 22, 2016 as viewed from a heliocentric (Sun centered) perspective

Mars is the archetypal warrior of the solar system. It relates to our need and desire to actively get what we want from life (claim what we desire), to defend ourselves, and take up some space in the world. This Earth/Mars synodic cycle (the technical term for the Sun/Mars/Earth alignments), relates to shifting themes connected to the archetypal nature of Mars. Look to the house or place that holds 4 degrees of tropical Leo for insight into the next two year cycle. Mars has many faces, and they shift alongside these conjunctions/oppositions.

While you may not realize it, you go through a roughly two year cycle craving or pursuing a particular theme which takes up much of your physical and psychic energy. That particular craving will be shifting again, and you'll be in pursuit of something else entirely which you can actualize over the next two years. I feel that the emergence of these cravings/desires are more closely related to the conjunctions, because Mars is symbolically engulfed by the Sun (it literally disappears behind it) and is renewed, thus Mars receives a new mission to actualize in the world.

The conjunctions of Sun and Mars deal with the emergence or start and activation of new paths. The oppositions relate to critical turning points in which we change the direction or flow of these actualizing impulses (because Mars is retrograde at these times). From the evolutionary astrological perspective, it is believed that Mars is a lower octave of Pluto. While Pluto is a symbolic reference for the desires existing within the soul, Mars is the means through which they’re carried through and actualized in the physical world. Thus, these conjunctions are significant markers in time and space for which we can better understand and work with to initiate (during the conjunction) or revise and redirect (during the retrograde opposition) desires of a metaphysical origin.

If we entertain the hypothetical suggestion that Mars somehow relates to the actualization of the soul’s pre-existing desires, then these cycles help us burn off our karma, or maybe even acquire more of it. So, we must bring more consciousness to this process to direct these energies to our evolutionary advantage. Check in with yourself (or your chart) to see what the next chapter holds and where much energy and passion will be directed. You're probably feeling it now with a change in the flow of your vitality and life force. On a purely collective level, this conjunction is heating up our drive, enthusiasm, and passion, or even revealing pent up frustration or anger. This may be a time to check in with yourself to see what's in the way of you attaining what you want or taking up some space in the world.

While the psychologist Sigmund Freud was probably off with many of his ideas, he did suggest that depression results from internalized anger and rage (but perhaps excluding clinical forms). I think that’s deeply insightful. To elaborate, if we repress our creativity, passion, and even sexual desires, then such feelings turn destructive and debilitating within the psyche. Also, if we favor one desire over another, then we tend to experience a polarization and the repressed desire manifests more strongly (even taking over our willpower for a period of time). If you're feeling moody, irritable, angry, frustrated, or depressed around this conjunction (unless of course you have obvious reasons to be), it's likely due to a blocked Eros, an inability to express your willpower or sexual and creative drive. You may want to get proactive now about ways you can direct this energy toward healthy and productive outlets.

Following a powerful New Moon with an applying conjunction to Mars (which occurred on July 23), this Sun/Mars conjunction is a significant starting point, and it’s been building up for some time. Mars has been in very close proximity to the Sun since mid-June of 2017, and so you’ve been feeling this transition ripple since then. This exact conjunction on July 26 may not manifest as a significant event, but so often the days surrounding the conjunction are accompanied by new beginnings of different flavors.

Whether you experience this energy positively or negatively has largely to do, hypothetically speaking, with how aligned you are with your soul’s true desires. Are you actively engaged with your life force, creativity, and passion? Are you listening to Eros? If not, then this can be a good time to connect with that reality, and begin taking those steps toward making changes that can better align you with what you’ve come here to do. If you are, then ride this wave confidently toward the actualization of what you really want. As we’re in the midst of eclipse season for the next month, expect to be on an accelerated path for change and personal transformation.

Upcoming Earth/Mars Synodic Periods

July 27, 2018 opposition @ 04 Aquarius

September 2, 2019 conjunction @ 09 Virgo

October 13, 2010 opposition @ 21 Aries

October 07, 2021 conjunction @ 15 Libra

December 07, 2022 opposition @ 16 Gemini

November 17, 2023 conjunction @ 25 Scorpio

January 15, 2025 opposition @ 26 Cancer

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help. Click here for personal readings. 

Follow me on Instagram for weekly astrological updates.

Acknowledging Your Darkness: Full Moon in Capricorn 2017

A high resolution photo of Pluto captured by NASA's New Horizons Spacecraft on July 14, 2015; NASA/John Hopkins Applied Physics Labratory/Southwest Research Institute. 

A high resolution photo of Pluto captured by NASA's New Horizons Spacecraft on July 14, 2015; NASA/John Hopkins Applied Physics Labratory/Southwest Research Institute. 

Full Moon @ 17 Capricorn 09'

July 8, 2017

9:07 PM Pacific

July 9, 2017

12:07 AM Eastern

This month’s Full Moon in tropical Capricorn generates some pretty dramatic and dynamic astrology. We’re likely to see the intensity of this lunation emerge on the world stage in one way or another, especially in the U.S. since it aligns with the Sun in the U.S. horoscope. The Full Moon is not naturally comfortable in Capricorn, especially given the fact that it conjoins Pluto. It’s likely to feel edgy and awkward for many of us. The Full Moon also creates a t-square configuration with the Sun widely conjunct Mars in Cancer and Jupiter squaring from the sign of Libra. On one level, this Full Moon culmination may correlate with very strong feelings, perceptions, paranoia, and possibly an eruption of anger in those not fully conscious of what they’re experiencing.

On the day of and the days surrounding this Full Moon, be mindful of not only how you’re responding to this complex dynamic, but also other people around you. While Pluto is certainly powerful, it's also sneaky. In combination with Jupiter, this Full Moon could bring about dramatic and possibly over exaggerated reactions to situations without fully understanding the source. Those reactions could be partially justified, but most likely, they are an unconscious, fearful reaction to the unknown. As an autonomous being with free will, you have the choice to step away from situations that may trigger upset, rage, or hostility in other people. With that said, this is a powerful lunation because it can bring about tremendous insight regarding realities that you’ve likely been incredibly unconscious of.

Both the Moon and Pluto are archetypes we associate with the hidden dimensions of the psyche. Every Full Moon brings events, projects, and developing situations to a head. This dramatic culmination will bring to light many things that have been concealed from view, ultimately so those realities can reach conscious awareness. This process has been underway the past week or so with several planets making oppositions to Pluto from Cancer. Pluto has been moving through Capricorn since 2008, and during this time we’ve collectively gained powerful insights about the dark edges of authoritarian power structures, either corporate, political, or governmental. This trend will continue for some time until Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024.

Capricorn is said to be a conservative sign, in that it helps us to prioritize and plan ahead practically and strategically. Use this Full Moon to take a good, hard look at your life and the choices you’ve been making up until this point. Distance and solitude may be your best tactic in dealing with these energies. In fact, this is a good time to step away from any developing, external drama to assess your own life position to gain insight into the changes that need to be made at this time. I think that Pluto’s ultimate teaching is that the more complex civilization becomes (and by extension, our own lives), the more it tends to reflect or mirror the unconscious state of the collective. This mirroring will probably show up for you in some way.

Since an opposition is naturally related to relationships, this heavy Full Moon will offer you the opportunity to see that external events are merely mirrors of your own unresolved issues. Pluto is not an easy archetype to integrate; it can often confront us with terrifying realities and realizations. That’s because, as much as we don’t like to admit it, it is a reality composed of the illusion of “good” and “evil”. Beyond this duality, is the ability to see ourselves as containing both of those polarities, and when we move beyond denying the unsettling and darker aspects within ourselves, we find tremendous power to rise above it and make lasting changes in the world. This Full Moon can also be a powerful creative catalyst, inspiring within us the ability to take decisive action to make sweeping changes in our own lives and the external world. Bottom line: look beyond appearances at this time; there is far more going on than you can visibly see. Instead of reacting to fear or anxiety, use this energy to get proactive and take initiative to take yourself to higher ground.

Life feels overwhelming when faced with things outside of your control. Understanding yourself is key to finding your power and place in the world. While you can't control fate or the chaos of life, your destiny belongs to you, something you can always strive for to gain command of your life path. Evolutionary Astrology can help. Click here for personal readings. 

Follow me on Instagram for weekly astrological updates.

New Moon in Cancer 2017: What Speaks to Your Heart?

White Yarrow by Peter Pearsall/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, via Wikimedia Commons.

White Yarrow by Peter Pearsall/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, via Wikimedia Commons.

New Moon @ 2 degrees Cancer 47'

June 23, 2017

7:31 PM Pacific

10:31 PM Eastern

This month, the lunar cycle renews itself with a New Moon in the tropical sign of Cancer. After the peak of energy at the Full Moon (June 9), you may find yourself needing a moment to recharge and relax. That’s kind of always the deal with New Moons in general, but particularly in Cancer, consciousness is more attuned to intimacy and inner needs. However, the Sun just made a conjunction with Mercury which lies within three degrees of the New Moon. There’s likely to be some residual buzziness in the atmosphere, urging you to seek stimulation and conversation. 
In Cancer, that’s likely to be directed to the imaginal life. With Cancer being one of the most fertile signs of the tropical zodiac and the Moon as ruler of this sign, this is a potent time for planting seeds of intention. Use this New Moon to get attuned to subconscious messages that may be arising. There’s probably been a lot of good ideas floating around, but focus your attention on those that really resonate with you on a gut level. That’s what this New Moon is all about, getting in touch with those impressions we receive about things that defy logic and common sense. 
The unconscious, imaginal life has considerable power with this lunation. This is also a potent moment for magic, mystery, and deep intimacy. Just past the summer solstice (winter solstice in the southern hemisphere), we’ve crossed a critical threshold in the Sun’s annual cycle. The summer solstice is a time to revel in our creativity and to enjoy the abundance that surrounds us. There is so much life and vitality at this time of the year, and with Mercury’s close proximity to this lunation, it can feel like there’s so much to do but you don’t quite know where to start. 
The New Moon in Cancer says, “start with what truly speaks to your heart.” To hear what the heart is saying, you need to avoid distraction and overwhelming yourself with too much activity. Make it a point with this lunation to lay low and recharge your energy. When you do that, you’ll find it easier to make contact with your inner guidance. With that said, a New Moon in Cancer highlights a need for security, safety, and domestic concerns. When planning for the future, you’re likely to take these themes into deep consideration. The Sun recently opposed Saturn, which is at its brightest this time of the year. 
This Saturnian opposition has many of us focusing on long term goals, strategies, collaborations, as well as a realization of life’s limitations. A New Moon in Cancer can also amplify emotional insecurities, fears, and vulnerabilities in the face of harsh realities and obstacles. However, the New Moon in Cancer invites each of us to trust the process at work. This dark of the Moon does not bring resolutions, but rather the willingness to take those first steps into the dark to make our dreams a reality. Look around for the support that you do have, and take time to show gratitude and love. The New Moon says, “you’ll find your way; just listen to your heart.” 

You did not come to Earth without a guide. Evolutionary Astrology is a powerful tool for self-discovery and an exceptionally helpful guide in times of uncertainty, crisis or stagnation. Click here for reading options and pricing.

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A Steady Gaze: Full Moon in Sagittarius 2017

 A swing high above Saturn by NASA's Cassini spacecraft; photo by NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI/Cornell, via Wikimedia Commons

 A swing high above Saturn by NASA's Cassini spacecraft; photo by NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI/Cornell, via Wikimedia Commons

Full Moon @ 18 degrees Sagittarius 23'

June 9, 2017

6:10 AM Pacific

9:10 AM Eastern

This month, the Full Moon culminates in the tropical sign of Sagittarius conjunct Saturn. It brings to a head the consequences of several choices recently made and an awareness of the reality of certain limitations we’re currently dealing with. In Sagittarius and forming a t-square with the Sun in Gemini and Neptune in Pisces, this lunation may also bring about a critical testing of our beliefs, ideologies, and faith in the universe/God/Goddess/higher power. With this potent Saturnian energy, the Full Moon also correlates with the manifestation of situations which require the solidification of commitments. 
This weighty Full Moon has a quality of seriousness with a focus on a specific mission, goal, or purpose. The Sun in Gemini creates some tension because there is an equally powerful desire for variety and a tendency toward distraction which can leave us running in circles, unable to tend to our responsibilities and more important priorities. Saturn in Sagittarius suggests narrowing our focus and sacrificing anything superfluous to avoid getting lost in uncertainty, confusion, and vagueness of purpose. In fact, this Full Moon is helping us to more clearly define or accept our purpose, whatever that may be.
In the days leading up to the Full Moon, look around for environmental cues that could be helpful in making more conscious choices and decisions. If you’ve been working hard toward some end goal, this Full Moon could help to bring about the rewards of your labor. But don’t expect any opportunities which manifest to be easy pursuits. Whatever shows up alongside this lunation is going to require time, energy, discipline, and hard work to reach success. Full Moon’s often coincide with an influx of excess energy, though some of us may respond to this particular lunation with feelings of depression, hopelessness and futility. 

This is because Saturn is always forcing us to face our limitations and employ reality testing to keep our ideals in check with what’s actually possible. If you find yourself feeling frustrated or sad, check in with yourself and take a sober look at what you’re dedicating the majority of your time and energy toward. We all need a purpose and some sense that we’re guided by a higher power; this is simply human nature. This lunation could be a powerful wake up call for some to rediscover their connection to a higher source and to connect with a divinely guided plan for their life. 
And remember, whatever you’re feeling is only transient in the moment. It will pass in the following days. Take whatever awareness or realization you acquire with this Full Moon and use it to guide you out of the fog of uncertainty and existential angst. Reflect deeply upon any potential commitments you’re considering at the moment. This powerful Full Moon is helping to provide us with a much needed perspective to take us to higher ground in our personal and professional lives. Most of all, pay close attention to your feelings and emotional center. It will have a lot to tell you about your current life direction. As always, have faith and trust the flow.

Love and Blessings,

Chad Woodward

You did not come to Earth without a guide. Evolutionary Astrology is a powerful tool for self-discovery and an exceptionally helpful guide in times of uncertainty, crisis or stagnation. Click here for reading options and pricing.

Follow me on Instagram for weekly astrological updates.

Be Gentle With Yourself: New Moon in Taurus 2017

Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve, Murrieta, CA; photo by Chad Woodward, April 2017.

Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve, Murrieta, CA; photo by Chad Woodward, April 2017.

New Moon @ 6 degrees Taurus 27'

April 26, 2017

5:16 AM Pacific

8:16 AM Eastern

April’s New Moon takes place in the tropical sign of Taurus. With Mercury still retrograde, this New Moon helps us keep things simple, direct, and gentle. Mercury retrograde conjoins Uranus in Aries alongside this lunar rebirth, adding a certain edge to this otherwise easy going and calming lunation. Mercury and Uranus invite us to deeply question our assumptions and perceptions about reality. In the days leading up this New Moon, you may have noticed something new about your environment, or had some potentially shocking realizations. 

How attached you are to a certain perception of life will determine how shocking or awakening these insights will be. Mercury and Uranus also help to give us glimpses of new possibilities or ways of solving problems in our lives. Innovative solutions are likely to be more readily available now, inviting us to re-strategize and find ways of moving around current obstacles. Questioning your beliefs, theories, and ideologies is likely in light of groundbreaking information. Needless to say, keep your ears open and receptive to what’s floating around in the wind. 

Mercury turns direct on May 3, one week from the New Moon. Use this time to dig deeply into this Taurus energy. As with all New Moons, new possibilities are emerging that aren’t quite clearly defined. A New Moon always points to something mysterious that you know exists, but you can’t quite pin it down exactly. The signs are all around you now, and they invite you not to think too much about them. In fact, with this Taurus New Moon, it’s a good time to get in touch with more subtle or even somatic dimensions of experience. 

Venus, the ruler of Taurus, is still picking up its speed as it goes direct, after roughly 40 days of retrograde motion. It is currently at the end of Pisces conjunct Chiron. That could shed some light on deep insecurities about our self-worth and relationships. Venus and Chiron may accentuate certain heart wounds and blockages in connection with our ability to bond and relate. Now that Venus is stationing direct, you may have had some deep realizations about yourself, your sense of value, and your true feelings. A change of heart is possible, and this New Moon can symbolize a new path to embark upon with our creative passion and loved ones.

Use this New Moon to slow down the pace of your life and take some time to listen carefully to your body, your heart, and the natural world. Whatever problems you’re currently trying to solve will be more easily digested by taking some time to unplug from the hectic external environment. Take some time for yourself. Eat well, listen to beautiful, soothing music, go for a hike or gentle walk in the natural world--anything to help relieve your nervous system. With Mercury still retrograde, there’s no need to rush. Your focus will become more clear in a few weeks, especially if you take this time to be gentle with yourself. 

You did not come to Earth without a guide. Evolutionary Astrology is a powerful tool for self-discovery and an exceptionally helpful guide in times of uncertainty, crisis or stagnation. Click here for reading options and pricing.

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A Larger Focus: Full Moon in Libra 2017

Photo by  Aleksandr Abrosimov , via Wikimedia Commons. 

Photo by Aleksandr Abrosimov, via Wikimedia Commons. 

Full Moon @ 21 Libra 33'

April 10, 2017

11:08 PM Pacific 

April 11, 2017

2:08 AM Eastern


We’re now waxing with the Moon into its cyclic culmination. This month’s Full Moon occurs in tropical Libra. Venus is slowing down, getting ready to turn direct, while Mercury just turned retrograde itself. Saturn is also in retrograde; though that is a much more common occurrence. Planetary stations tend to amplify a planet’s archetype. And when planets station (especially several at once as we are now experiencing), we often find ourselves at a crossroads or transitional point in our life narratives. That’s typically how it feels. 

Venus’ station has us focusing on our values, self-worth, and relationships. There’s a lot more mixed up with that, but those are the big themes. Saturn’s station is likely to give you a reality-check by accentuating limitations and challenges we’re currently facing. If you’ve felt a bit frustrated with some circumstances in your life, know that Saturn is helping you step up and take responsibility for yourself. Saturn’s help often goes unrecognized. Existential angst, depression, and feelings of futility are signs that we need to step it up and get productive with something. Mercury, well, it always tends to slow things down and create some setbacks alongside the usual technical and communicative issues. 

Luckily, the Full Moon in Libra conjoins Jupiter. That helps to open up new possibilities, opportunities, and connections for us at the right moment. However, don’t overestimate what you can handle. Don’t be surprised if the universe throws you quite a lot with this Full Moon. Your job is to mindfully discern what it is you’re capable of taking on. To start, take a deep breath (don’t forget to exhale). Find your center of calm or your happy place. Sit there and gather yourself. Transitions are often stressful; that’s a natural consequence of change. 

This social Full Moon can give you a helping hand. Consider reaching out and putting yourself out there to truly benefit, but first, make sure you’ve found some place of balance within yourself. That might not be reflected in your external life, but you can always find it within. All that chatter outside is just a highly convincing illusion anyway. The true reality is inside of you. Once you’ve calmed down, take a step back and assess what it is you’re actually trying to do. If you have no idea, accept that, and put it out to the universe that you need some help and guidance, perhaps some signs or omens. 

Use the next three weeks to play around with some things. Give yourself extra time and space to gain clarity. Urgent and pressing emergencies aside, Mercury’s retrograde cycle suggests holding off on making big decisions right now. Give yourself a few weeks to sort it all out. Accept that there isn’t much in life that can’t wait that long. What you’re looking for won’t manifest if you actually look for it. That might sound strange, but Pablo Picasso summed it up when he said, “I do not seek, I find.” Commune with the playful, trickster. Allow it to surprise you. The Sun is in opposition to the Moon and conjunct Uranus and Eris. 

The need for freedom and authenticity is strong, which can go against cooperation or compromise in certain situations. This Full Moon equally asks that we find some balance between the need to be true to ourselves and the need to integrate with others. That’s a point of frustration, but again, consider new possibilities you’ve yet to encounter. Put yourself in a place of receptivity and trust that you will find a new solution that’s truly out of the box. And lastly, Venus, the ruler of the Full Moon is currently stationing and conjunct Chiron. That might accentuate heart wounds, shadows, and defects in our relationships, but realize that whatever pain you may encounter can be quickly transmuted with a change of attitude and a change of heart. You have the power to rise above anything you encounter with others, by seeing it from a different perspective, or even focusing on bigger things. 


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Blazing the Trail: New Moon in Aries 2017

Image by Chad Woodward, 2016.

Image by Chad Woodward, 2016.

New Moon @ 7 Aries 37'

March 27, 2017

7:57 PM Pacific

10:57 PM Eastern

This month’s New Moon in tropical Aries is a potent new beginning. In fact, with Venus’ retrograde conjunction with the Sun (also known as an inferior conjunction) and the equinox behind us, there are vibrant atmospheric conditions conducive for new adventures, experiences, and starting points. Aries, the first sign of the zodiac, is a cardinal, fire sign. Aries relates to our need to catalyze enthusiasm to assert our will in the world. As an archetype, Aries is known as the warrior, though I like to refer to it as a trailblazer. Those born with strong Aries signatures in their birth charts, often find themselves faced with the need to take their own path in life. 

Their evolution depends on taking risks, facing fear, and consistently seeking new challenges. That often leaves the Aries individual with the need to lead themselves and others into new territory and experiences. With this New Moon, you may find that whatever you’re caught up in has this quality of blazing a new trail or taking off in some uncharted direction. The New Moon naturally carries this quality; something mysterious is emerging at this point that we can’t quite fully grasp. Aries encourages us to follow our will and desires to this new place even though we may not fully understand what the end result will be.
Use this New Moon to reflect deeply on what’s arising within you. Take some time to connect with your desires and what you really want. Whatever intentions you set now, have the power to carry you far for the next several years. With Venus retrograde and in conjunction with this New Moon, we are in fertile ground for setting into motion projects, commitments, and relationships that will unfold and develop in synch with Venus’ eight year rhythm. That means that the things you find yourself presently dealing with in your personal life are likely to have long term consequences. Consider deeply how important these things are for you and whether they’re truly worth the time and energy.
For many relationships, this New Moon is generating an entirely new chapter and turning point. Whether those relationships are romantic, platonic, or professional, consider what’s happening between you and these important people in your life. This lunation is creating an opportunity to change the direction of certain partnerships. Over the past few weeks of Venus’ retrograde cycle, you’ve perhaps had a change of heart. You’ve likely seen certain dynamics in a different light, or have even realized certain feelings you didn’t know existed. This New Moon will help to give you the confidence to take the next step with your realizations and put some things into action.

All trail blazers need immense courage, conviction, and assertiveness to face the unknown. You may find that taking the initiative, setting clear boundaries, and asserting your needs will be quite effective at this point in creating change. That change may not be what you initially expected, but these energies are asking you to assert yourself in some dynamic way to bring in fresh momentum and movement. Many issues that have been circulating in the air the past few weeks are now given a chance to really shift so that forward progress can happen. Embrace the new path that is opening up in your life and in your partnerships. It has the power to take you far.


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Getting It Together: Full Moon in Virgo 2017

Photo by Chad Woodward, Feb. 2017. 

Photo by Chad Woodward, Feb. 2017. 

Full Moon @ 22 Virgo 13'

March 12, 2017

7:54 AM Pacific

10:54 AM Eastern

This month’s Full Moon culminates in tropical Virgo. The Sun sits in opposition to the Moon in Pisces conjunct Chiron and Mercury. Saturn in Sagittarius creates a t-square to the Full Moon axis, generating an opportunity for breakthrough in the material world. This earthy Full Moon in Virgo brings to our awareness the need for focus and the practical application of skills to the benefit others. The combination of Saturn and this Virgo Full Moon is about concrete manifestation and the limitations we must work with to make our dreams a reality. 

The tension created by this lunation can shed light on the fears and blockages which stand in the way of the actualization of certain goals and objectives. It can help you see more clearly those obstacles that keep snagging you and preventing the flow of productivity. Chiron conjunct Mercury square Saturn invites us to question beliefs and ideologies which are not in alignment with reality as it’s actually experienced. Question whether an attachment to certain beliefs have shaped your attitude and perception of the world and how well they serve you. Some fact checking and more thorough research would be a good way to gain perspective.

Saturn reminds us that while we can work hard to make our dreams come true, we sometimes have to strike a compromise when we realize that our previous strategies are not in alignment with the laws governing the universe. Full Moons always bring situations to a head. Something often culminates and reaches a pinnacle of expression. Yet it is also preceded by the process of decay and breakdown of structures that have served their purpose. This lunation can stand as a symbolic moment to help release beliefs, attitudes, and ideologies that have limited our capacity to trust and go with the flow of life. 

Consider the messages and teachings that are coming to you now. There is likely to be a lot of wisdom floating around, perhaps from places you wouldn’t normally consider. Reflect deeply on those places that you’ve condemned or discarded. You may rediscover potential, insight or gifts where you fear to tread. While this Full Moon may not feel initially comfortable, as it amplifies fears, wounds and the awareness of challenges, it can be used as a catalyst to narrow down opportunities and objectives. With several planets in Pisces, there’s a surge of creativity and inspiration with this Full Moon. There can also be some delusion, denial, and tendencies toward escapism.

The Moon in Virgo can help ground and implement a lot of this abstract and indefinite material. It can also help get us back on track after a period of uncertainty and confusion. The Moon’s North Node in Virgo suggests focusing on some greater purpose or objective in which we can contribute mindfully to the larger community. Uranus conjunct Eris in Aries quincunx to the Full Moon reveals that the need for personal freedom and self-expression must make an adjustment to pertinent duties and responsibilities. That might require finding some way to express yourself without that interfering with your ability to be of effective service. 

Lastly, this polarity of energies can create frustration with certain realities, but it can also point to the potential for breakthrough. Our choices and how we use this energy will greatly determine how well we can rise above distraction, ambiguity, and delusion to find greater clarity and sense of purpose. If you feel lost at the moment, find some point of focus that can carry you through. It could be a simple project, task, or discipline that you can immerse yourself in. Virgo’s highest objective is self-improvement and competence. As you keep your sights on those ideals, the inspiration and creative insight you seek will come flooding in. Keep to the tasks at hand, and you’ll more effectively ride the wave toward your objectives. 


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The Path of Heart: Venus Retrograde 2017

Western buttercup in bloom; photo by Chad Woodward, February 2017.

Western buttercup in bloom; photo by Chad Woodward, February 2017.

Venus Retrograde in Aries/Pisces 2017

March 4-April 15, 2017

Venus turns retrograde on March 4, 2017 in tropical Aries. Venus will transit from 13 degrees of Aries to 26 degrees of Pisces this cycle. It turns direct on April 15 after 42 days of retrograde motion. These roughly 40 days of Venus retrograde are often quite significant for relationships and “matters of the heart”. The planet Venus correlates primarily with the bonding instinct. When she turns retrograde, many relationships undergo a notable transformation, but there is a lot more to it as you will soon learn. The Venus retrograde cycle runs on an eight year rhythm. She stations retrograde at five different points in the zodiac and returns to roughly the same locations every eight years (yes, she forms a near perfect pentagram in the sky). 

The Venus retrograde cycle correlates strongly with the development of situations that reach critical turning points every eight years. This particular cycle echoes back to March-April 2009. You may want to reflect on this past cycle to gain some understanding about what’s happening now. Relationships cover a lot of territories. We form relationships with people. That one is obvious. We can also form relationships to other sentient beings like plants, animals, and “higher entities”. Venus is associated with both Libra and Taurus. The Libra face of Venus deals with “bridge building” and rapport--the instinct to form connections between self and other. 

The Taurus face of Venus deals with the more interior dimension of Venus--what we place value upon in life and how we value and show love for ourselves. The goddess Venus/Aphrodite is the quintessential love goddess. In both her two faces, Venus deals with love for other beings and for ourselves. Venus is the brightest “star” in the sky. We know that Venus is not actually a star, but it’s radiant glow certainly gives it that illustrious, star-like appearance. Like Mercury, Venus is never too far away from the Sun (an actual star which is certainly brighter). Due to this fact, Venus can either be seen rising before the Sun or setting after the Sun. 

It is during these retrograde phases that Venus switches from evening (known as Venus Hesperus) to morning star (Venus Lucifer). At the midpoint of the Venus retrograde cycle (also known as New Venus), the Sun and Venus form what’s called an inferior conjunction where Venus is between the Earth and the Sun. After Venus slowly emerges from this conjunction, it will be seen rising before the Sun each morning until the superior conjunction (when Venus is on the far side of the Sun). These two conjunctions create a Sun, Venus, Earth alignment. During Venus retrograde, it is moving at its slowest, it’s closer to the Earth, and it spends several months in roughly one sign of the zodiac. 

To understand Venus retrograde, these fine details are important. Venus is the archetypal “heart”, not really the actual organ, but the “heart center”, like the heart chakra. It represents that place inside of us that seeks peace, love, understanding, common ground, and relational stability. We associate Venus with beautiful things and people, experiences that have this calming and sedative effect on the body. When you look at something beautiful, how do you feel? When you see someone incredibly attractive, where do you feel it? Beauty fills us with this warm fuzzy feeling in the heart center in the body. Culturally, we often talk about “following your heart”, listening to that place inside of you that is guided by blissful feelings. Mythologist Joseph Campbell summed it up in this catch phrase, “follow your bliss”. 

The pattern that Venus' cycle creates from our geocentric perspective. 

The pattern that Venus' cycle creates from our geocentric perspective. 

We don’t just experience life through the mind and ego. That is of course how we’re culturally conditioned to see the world--logically and rationally. Venus isn’t either of those things. Venus is that heart centered desire for something idyllic--something beyond reason and common sense. Venus wants everyone to get along and live a harmonious, blissful existence. It seeks to connect and with whomever it comes into contact with. While that’s not an entirely realistic goal, it does say a lot about what happens in our social interactions. Even in the most awkward of exchanges, there seems to be something inside of us that attempts to find common ground no matter what. Some of us are better at that than others. Usually, Venus is strong in these people’s charts. 

Venus is this bridge-building impulse within the psyche. When we have common ground, when we’re at peace with people in our lives, we can relax. We calm down. We don’t have to worry so much about where other people stand. When we look at a beautiful painting, sculpture, natural setting, or listen to breathtaking music, we equally feel this sense of calm and ease with the world. And when we slow down, when we relax and really listen, we can hear the heart. How do we follow the heart unless we can hear it? You can’t hear it if you’re up in your head all the time thinking about how you’re supposed to be following your heart. You need to stop, quiet down, and listen.

How do we learn about other people if we just talk about ourselves all of the time? We don’t. We have to shut up and listen to others. Venus also deals heavily with empathy--the ability to put yourself in someone else’s place to understand what they’re experiencing and where they’re coming from. So, when Venus is retrograde, the heart is louder! Venus is the closest to the earth when it’s retrograde. This is a time to slow down and get out of your head. Sometimes during these cycles we’re kind of forced to slow down by circumstances around us. Between the stations of Venus (when Venus stops and changes direction), Venus reaches its inferior conjunction with the Sun. It is engulfed by it; the heart undergoes this alchemical transformation. Venus is descending into the heart of the Sun to become reborn. 

When Venus is retrograde, all of these Venusian themes are much louder than usual. Our relationships (our ability to relate and bond with others) undergo a transformation. You may notice a lot of shifting dynamics within your interactions with other people. You may reevaluate all of your partnerships (friendships, professional, and marriage/intimate partnerships). You may notice certain shadows, flaws, and blind spots in others that you didn’t see before. You may focus heavily on such things within yourself. You may become preoccupied with beautiful things. You may discover or rediscover beauty in some new way in your life. You may also come closer to finding your own unique “heart path”--that thread through life that is guided by your bliss. There is a lot of reevaluating going on during Venus retrograde, shifting values and priorities.

You may heavily reevaluate yourself, what you’re worth and worthy of. That may deeply impact your relationships and how you connect with others. To get the most out of Venus retrograde, you need to go with the flow. Take some time to slow down your life and check in with your heart. What does it have to say? What does it need? Tend to and take care of this powerful place. Learn how to feed it. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, as the saying goes. This is a time to discover what you find beautiful so that you can actively seek and attract it into your life. Give your heart what it needs during this time. Be gentle with yourself and the people you love.

This is an opportunity to go deeper, to see how far you can reach both inwardly and outwardly. When Venus is reborn, you will feel some new and expanded capacity for love. You can love a whole lot more, but only if you take the time to listen, slow down, and trust where your heart is leading you. It may defy logic. It’ll probably be a little uncomfortable, but if you choose the path of heart, you’ll really be living. You’ll know what it means to thrive. That is not something the mind knows how to do. Only the heart knows how to really feel life in its wholeness--to see beauty in both the joy and the pain. 

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Insight from Eternity: Solar Eclipse/New Moon in Pisces 2017

Annular solar eclipse; photo by Takeshi Kuboki via Wikimedia Commons

Annular solar eclipse; photo by Takeshi Kuboki via Wikimedia Commons

New Moon/Solar Eclipse @ 8 degrees Pisces 12'

February 26, 2017

6:58 AM Pacific

9:58 AM Eastern

February’s New Moon is an annular solar eclipse in tropical Pisces. It conjoins both Neptune and the South Node of the Moon. Mercury and Chiron are also in Pisces alongside this powerful and mysterious lunation. A New Moon is always a beginning point. It’s a fresh new start in the Moon’s lunar cycle. It’s a time to embrace the uncertainty of the moment and trust the seeds that you’re starting to plant in your life. A solar eclipse is an exceptionally powerful New Moon. It can sometimes generate intense feelings and reactions to what’s going on in your life.. 

Eclipses can also rapidly accelerate changes both inwardly and outwardly. Since Pisces is a mutable sign, this eclipse symbolizes a significant transitional point. If you’re ready for this transition, then you’ll find it easier to navigate. Since Neptune, the South Node, and Pisces are highlighted with this eclipse, the first theme to consider is surrender. This is really about letting go of emotional obstacles that have prevented full participation in life. The high end of Pisces and Neptune is the desire for full awareness and greater conscious perception. It invites us to slow down the mind and listen carefully to our inner guidance. If you're aware of this need, this eclipse can help you access information and insight from higher conscious states.

When we perceive more, we feel more. The more aware we are of our reality, the more we can experience. Higher consciousness comes with a price. It requires that we sacrifice ignorance and comforting illusions. That’s not something a lot of people are willing to do. That brings us to the low end of these archetypes, which are very likely to manifest if we’re not aware of what’s happening. Overburdened by sensitivity, we may seek to escape from the intensity of the moment. This is why Pisces and Neptune are so often associated with escapism to addicting drugs, alcohol, or Netflix binges. 

The dark end of Neptunian escapism is not the same as needing something to dull the discomfort that is a part of us. It’s the addiction to escapism that becomes the problem because it disconnects us from ourselves and others. And typically behind our desire to escape is anxiety which is rooted in fear. Take this moment to truly get in touch with those fears. Instead of ignoring or numbing out the anxiety, use this eclipse as an opportunity to begin a dialogue with it. Talk to your fear and pain, and choose to sit with it. Ask yourself what you need to move on. Use this powerful eclipse to transcend in a positive way. It carries a lot of creative, spiritual, and visionary potential. 

Mars is approaching a conjunction with Uranus and Eris in Aries in opposition to Jupiter. This dynamic conjunction is about taking initiative. It can help you to step up and take a stand somewhere in your life. Mars, Uranus, Eris, and Jupiter also correlate with strong rebellious impulses, which we can use in different ways. Consider what, if anything, you want to liberate yourself from. Mars and Uranus can help give you the courage to take off in a new direction. Consider that only you know what’s really best for yourself. Honor that reality, and when you’re ready, you can take a more active part in directing your life. This New Moon/eclipse might bring up some uncomfortable things, but it can also help you break through to a new level of perception and inclusiveness. Both miracles and nightmares await you here. It takes a certain level of awareness to see that both ends of that spectrum are a part of what we call the universe.

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Standing Rock at the Precipice: The Astrology of NODAPL

Dakota Access Pipeline protest site near Cannonball, ND August 15, 2016; photo by Shane Balkowitsch via Wikimedia Commons. 

Dakota Access Pipeline protest site near Cannonball, ND August 15, 2016; photo by Shane Balkowitsch via Wikimedia Commons. 

You’ve likely heard about the ongoing protests against the construction of an oil pipeline on unceded territory of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota. It all began on April 1, 2016 when dozens of tribal members from various nations rode on horseback to set up camp near the construction site--the portion of pipeline that was to be placed beneath Lake Oahe which connects to the Missouri River. It is the only source of clean water for the people of Standing Rock as well as many other indigenous groups. It equally supplies water for 18 million people downstream. The protesters, who call themselves water protectors, traveled to the site to peacefully protest and pray to the land in which their ancestors are buried. They feel that this pipeline not only threatens this vital water source but also violates treaties made between the U.S. government and the Sioux nation, infringing upon sacred burial grounds and historically significant sites. 

“They’re going under the river 500 yards from my son’s grave, my father’s grave, my aunt who I buried last week. I really love my land, and if that pipeline breaks everything is gone,” Ladonna Allard, a member of the Standing Rock, told the Guardian. Oil pipelines are notorious for leaks causing massive environmental contamination and requiring large scale clean-up operations. Like the Keystone XL pipeline, the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) has been subject to ongoing delays due to fierce opposition from protesters and environmental groups. However, unlike Keystone XL, DAPL doesn’t cross the Canadian border and is not considered a federal project. It’s privately funded and its construction is subject to approval by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). 

On Dec. 4 2016, the USACE denied an easement for the texas-based subsidy of Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the pipeline construction. This proved to be a short lived victory for the water protectors and many felt it was a distraction intended to remove the No Dakota Access Pipeline (NODAPL) protests from the media. There was already very little coverage of the story by the mainstream press and, for the most part, complete silence from politicians before and after the 2016 election. Coverage of the DAPL protests has derived entirely from alternative media outlets and activist groups. As expected, shortly after his inauguration, President Donald Trump issued an executive memorandum expediting the completion of DAPL. As of this writing, on Feb. 7,  the USACE has stated their intention to now grant an easement which will give Energy Transfer Partners permission to continue construction beneath Lake Oahu. 

Lake Oahe; image by Doc Searls via Wikimedia Commons.

Lake Oahe; image by Doc Searls via Wikimedia Commons.

The camp at Standing Rock grew into the thousands over several months since the water protectors arrived in April 2016. Tribal nations across the U.S. and the world have joined forces to fight DAPL. Many non-native people also came to Standing Rock to show support and protest peacefully, including thousands of U.S. veterans who arrived just as the easement was denied back in Dec. 2016. Activists across the country held protests, demonstrations, and marches to voice their opposition to DAPL. The water protectors’ primary plea is for the pipeline to be rerouted from its present course so that it doesn’t threaten their sacred sites and source of clean water. In fact, the pipeline was already rerouted from its previous course just north of Bismarck, a highly populated city which, according to a 2010 census, is 92.4 percent white. 

The ongoing fight at Standing Rock is not only an environmental justice issue, but one involving racial and class discrimination. American History is tainted with stains of genocide and relentless oppression against Native Americans and many other ethnic minorities. The residents of Bismarck, just like the people at Standing Rock, opposed the construction of this oil pipeline that could potentially cause massive environmental harm. Yet unlike Bismarck, the voices at Standing Rock have only been faintly heard by Energy Transfer Partners and the USACE. It would seem that it’s far easier to exploit a subjugated minority group (who suffer a 63 percent unemployment rate) than the residents of Bismarck. 

Energy Transfer Partners has gone as far as hiring police from various departments throughout North Dakota to protect their pipeline. These militarized police forces have, in the name of defending corporate interests, inflicted harm upon American citizens, the very people they are supposed to protect. This abuse of power is one of the most egregious examples of the corruption that has infected the heart of corporate and governmental relations in America today. Attack dogs, tear gas, rubber bullets, concussion grenades, and water cannons (in freezing temperatures) have been unleashed on the water protectors. They’ve been harassed, arrested (even kept in dog kennels), and overall treated as criminals on their own sacred land. 

People marching to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline near San Francisco City Hall; photo by Pax Ahimsa Gethen. By Pax Ahimsa Gethen (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

People marching to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline near San Francisco City Hall; photo by Pax Ahimsa Gethen. By Pax Ahimsa Gethen (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Of course, this is nothing new for the native people of the U.S. American history is filled with the gruesome assault on native people. And yet, so many, including many of our elected (and supposedly “progressive”) officials, have remained silent about the injustices that are happening at Standing Rock. I’ve been following this story since the summer of 2016, yet just recently thought of looking into the astrology. It’s difficult to pinpoint an exact time for the construction of the chart that would symbolize the fight at Standing Rock. April 1 is really the symbolic day that it all began. That morning, tribal members left on horseback to travel to a camp near the site. After some research and slight rectification (a method of testing a chart against various dates to adjust the time), I came up with April 1, 2016 @ 1:04 PM, Cannonball, ND, around the time they arrived according to video tweets from Unicorn Riot. We could also theoretically look at a time when they departed. Yet, this chart seemed a better fit than earlier variations as you’ll soon see.

I rectified the chart to 1:04 PM after looking for significant angular activation on days of critical developments (planets hitting the Ascendent, Nadir, Descendent, or Midheaven). For example, on Dec. 4, the date that the USACE denied Energy Transfer Partners an easement, Jupiter was conjunct the Nadir (fourth house cusp) trine the transiting Moon conjunct Mars. Venus was conjunct the radix Moon in the 6th house and sextile the radix Venus in the 9th. The transiting Sun was also exactly trine the radix Sun in the 9th. The secondary progressed Moon was conjunct the Descendant (seventh house cusp). These were all rather “positive” aspects. With stimulation from both classical “benefics”, Jupiter and Venus, and a nice trine from Sun to radix Sun, this indicated the symbols of a celebration which the water protectors certainly indulged in that day.

Taking this chart to be merely symbolic of the fight at Standing Rock, let’s see what it has to say. I will look at this chart from a classical approach and then interpret it from an evolutionary lens. To begin, the chart has tropical Leo rising. I adjusted the Ascendant (ASC) to 4 degrees of Leo which gave a sabian symbol of, “Rock formations at the edge of a precipice.” Interestingly, the opposite symbol, on the Descendent (DSC) is, “A council of ancestors.” This was immediately intriguing to me. With Leo rising, the ruler of the chart is the Sun, which is elevated in the 9th house and exalted in Aries. This gives the ruler of the chart, and thus the water protectors themselves, a tremendous advantage and considerable power and influence. 


The Sun is free of affliction from any malefic planets though it does receive a trine from Saturn which is actually quite supportive. The only trouble with this chart is the Moon. The Moon is in detriment in Capricorn and it’s void of course. On April 1 of that day, the Moon went void of course at 11:39 AM. Could the Sun’s exaltation overpower this negative omen from the Moon? When the Moon is void of course, it means that “nothing will come of the matter” or “the situation is out of your hands.” Let’s imagine that the Moon, the fastest moving planet, carries out our wishes and expectations. The Moon helps us manifest the things we desire which emanate from the unconscious, emotional terrain within the psyche. When the Moon is void, she is of no help to us. She cannot make use of our will or desires at these times. Now, considering that we don’t exactly know the official start of the fight at Standing Rock, and that the water protectors actually left for their trip to the protest site on horseback before the Moon went void, this may not have the greatest power over the will of the water protectors.

Yet, if it does, it may have much to say about the realistic result of the peaceful protest itself. Meaning, it’s possible that this fight, the ultimate rerouting of the pipeline, may be “out of the hands” of the water protectors. But that Sun is powerful! In Aries, it shows a group of people who are ready for battle. Aries is the warrior, the trailblazer, and the daredevil. There are three planets in Aries. Both Mercury and Uranus are conjunct each other and the Midheaven (MC) in the 10th house in Aries. This reveals the public persona that this group will create for themselves: those who are vocally opposed (Mercury) to the pipeline, willing to fight (Aries) and rebel (Uranus) against any authority (10th house) to the bitter end. Uranus and Mercury on the MC in Aries gives Standing Rock a powerful voice to spread a message publically about the injustices they face. 

With the Sun exalted in Aries and also conjunct the MC with Mercury and Uranus, this reveals a group of radical warriors willing to withstand and face any challenge. From the evolutionary perspective, the emphasis in Aries shows that the water protectors are destined to face tremendous stress and opposition. While the Sun is exalted, its placement in Aries foreshadows that this is a fight that will strengthen their group identity. Aries tells us that they must face some serious fears and cultivate immense bravery to carry this mission out. When Aries is highlighted, there is an element of risk, thrill, and considerable stress involved--all elements we have seen manifest at Standing Rock. 

The chart with transits on Dec. 4, 2016 when the U.S. Army Corps denied easement requiring an environmental impact study before further construction. This has now been revoked and DAPL has been granted easement. Note Jupiter on the IC with three more passes to go. 

The chart with transits on Dec. 4, 2016 when the U.S. Army Corps denied easement requiring an environmental impact study before further construction. This has now been revoked and DAPL has been granted easement. Note Jupiter on the IC with three more passes to go. 

The Sun in the 9th house in Aries paints the picture of true spiritual warriors that are fighting and defending their religion and beliefs. Interestingly, while the 9th house has a correlation with “foreign travel”, the very people who first settled on these lands are perceived by the rest of us as foreigners. Their customs, traditions, and way of life seem alien to westernized Americans, which they have fought to preserve against all odds. This strong Arian energy is something that the indigenous Americans have had to cultivate merely as a means of survival. The Moon in Capricorn reveals much about the group soul. In the 6th house, there is a deep concern about survival and the preservation of their daily life (6th house). 

Capricorn is concerned about the future and planning ahead. The emotional impetus of NODAPL is exactly that. The Moon is their home, their sacred land. In Capricorn, we feel a sense of urgency within these people driven by the fear of the dangers within the environment. The Moon is very widely conjunct Pluto (by over 9 degrees). Pluto has been in Capricorn since 2008, which began with the Global Financial Crises that shed light on the corruption of big banks and the government’s inability to hold them accountable. Many big banks have in fact invested in the pipeline. Pluto in Capricorn in the 6th house reveals a threat to survival and personal and environmental health. The Moon’s close proximity reveals the core emotional and karmic reasons for this standoff. Pluto also makes a square to the Sun (ruler of the chart), the MC, Mercury and Uranus. This further reveals a conflict that the water protectors (Sun in Aries 9th) must face and the hardship they will endure from the corruption of a big and powerful entity. 

Pluto is certainly a worthy opponent for this exalted Sun in Aries. The ultimate mission of these water protectors is highly thwarted by Pluto. This reveals that a compromise will likely be made, because in a square, neither side will back down. This tells us that the fight at Standing Rock is one that, even despite any “official” decision, will continue for some time. Looking at the South Node of the Moon, the core of any evolutionary reading, we see it in Pisces in the 9th house conjunct Chiron, Ceres, and Venus. The ruler of the South Node, Neptune, is in Pisces in the 8th house. This is all rather telling. As we know, Native Americans have been the victims of mass genocide for hundreds of years. Chiron conjunct the South Node reveals a deep, karmic wound of dissipation and loss of identity (Pisces) at the hands of foreigners (9th house). 

Neptune in Pisces in the 8th, the house of death, reveals a dark history of the native people facing the constant threat of annihilation. The South Node in Pisces has the feel of a ghost, unseen and unnoticed. Deeply buried in the karmic past, we see a people who feel unheard and forgotten. We see the soul of a nation that has seen the darkest side of humanity. With Venus and Ceres conjunct the South Node as well, we see that they have been able to band together and maintain a strong bond upholding their beliefs and customs. Yet, Chiron reveals the reality that these bonds, traditions, and way of life have succumbed to deformity and defectiveness. Ceres, the grain goddess, and its association with food and nourishment, tells of a wound related to malnutrition and poverty. We also see, quite poignantly, Pisces’ association with water. 

People marching in protest to the Dakota Access Pipeline; photo by Pax Ahimsa Gethen. (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

People marching in protest to the Dakota Access Pipeline; photo by Pax Ahimsa Gethen. (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Chiron speaks quite clearly to the threat of “wounded” (Chiron) water (Pisces/Neptune). The North Node of the Moon is in Virgo in the 3rd house conjunct Jupiter. It’s ruler, Mercury, is in Aries in the 10th, conjunct Uranus and the MC. From our evolutionary lens, we see that this protest, whether it succeeds in rerouting the pipeline or not, will have a greater impact on informing the world about this injustice, hopefully inspiring others to stand up against corporate and governmental corruption. The North Node in Virgo in the third house conjunct Jupiter reveals that these native groups must learn new skills and means of communication to get their message out. Many have teamed up with various legal groups to fight the pipeline in courts and to help communicate with police forces. Mercury conjunct Uranus in Aries in the 10th house urges the water protectors to continue to fight and rebel against the structures that seek to oppress them. 

Jupiter conjunct the North Node illustrates the unresolved wound within these indigenous groups of not feeling heard, noticed, or taken seriously. It also reveals the power of authority figures over them, who used a complicated foreign language (such as legalease) to oppress and dominate them. Jupiter’s presence here suggests that the water protector’s higher destiny involves taking a big risk--even risking it all, to stand up and be heard by the world. It also suggests the need to use this complicated language, previously used against them, to fight back. The presence of Jupiter may involve the need to take legal action. While many mainstream media organizations have persistently ignored the water protectors, the power of the internet and alternative media has given them a platform to be noticed (symbolized by Uranus conjunct Mercury).  

Saturn in the 5th house also makes a square to the nodal axis. This symbolizes a karmic “skipped step”, something that was left unresolved in the past but must now be integrated. Saturn has clear associations with authority figures and government. In Sagittarius, it relates to the further wounding and violence perpetrated upon these people by the ideologies and beliefs of European immigrants. A square is an overpowering influence, one which the ancestors of the water protectors couldn’t resolve previously. It speaks to past patterns of enduring daunting challenges that leave the karmic memory with a sense of futility and depression. The way to resolve it now is to persist against all opposition and accomplish something great. Saturn in the 5th house symbolizes a wound inflicted upon children and future generations, and the need to make a dramatic statement to preserve their traditions and spiritual beliefs. 

The chart with transits in mid April 2O17 with Jupiter's second pass to the IC. 

The chart with transits in mid April 2O17 with Jupiter's second pass to the IC. 

Looking ahead, it seems that Jupiter’s recent retrograde may give some support. All hope is not yet lost. Jupiter is set to conjunct the IC again in mid April 2017 in its retrograde phase (assuming this chart is radical and has predictive value). Just as it did in Dec. 2016, this Jupiter contact could indicate another victory for the water protectors, or another construction delay of some kind (considering Jupiter’s retrograde motion). Jupiter will station one degree from opposition to the radix Sun at 13 degrees of Libra from May to early June of 2017. It will hit the IC one last time in early August 2017, and so perhaps, if the God of good fortune smiles upon the bold efforts of the indigenous warriors, some good news or compromise will come. Early August looks potentially promising, with the Sun, then in Leo, making a trine to its radix position as it did from Sagittarius in Dec. 2016. The Sun will be joined by Mars in the first house of this chart, giving great willpower and new direction to the water protectors.

Venus turns stationary retrograde in early March conjunct the radix Sun near the MC. It then turns stationary direct in mid April while conjunct the radix Venus. Mercury also turns retrograde shortly after, and then stations direct in early May conjunct the radix Mercury/Uranus in the 10th. It’s hard to say if all of this retrograde activity is positive or not. Hitting major placements in the chart, we can see some definite significant happenings taking place with the fight against DAPL. With the symbolism of retrogrades, we can anticipate a delay; some lengthy chain of events that drags out the battle. It’s likely, considering the circumstances, that this may involve legal proceedings at this point. When the easement was denied in Dec. 2016, Mercury was in the shadow of its retrograde, one week before its station near the radix Pluto in the 6th. Thus, we can expect these events to manifest from March through perhaps mid May with a definite highlight around mid April. We can only hope that Jupiter’s retrograde cycle brings a solution or compromise (Jupiter in Libra) which will likely occur in the August time frame. 

The protest at Standing Rock also coincides with the opposition of Jupiter and Uranus. The cycle of Jupiter and Uranus historically correlates with periods political and cultural upheaval, leading to widespread demonstrations, marches, and protests worldwide. The last phase of the Jupiter/Uranus cycle peaked in the summer of 2010, during the height of the Occupy Wallstreet movement and the Arab Spring uprisings in the middle east. This next opposition phase will be active through the end of 2018 using wide planetary orbs. With this in mind, it’s quite likely that the battle for this sacred land is not over yet, and we’re likely to see more opposition against similar projects in the very near future. 

As I briefly mentioned above, the sabian symbol for the rising degree is, “Rock formations at the edge of a precipice.” Not only does this symbol allude to Standing Rock, the tribe whose land is being directly violated by Energy Transfer Partners, but it speaks to a profound truth about the indigenous people of the United States. They and the legacy of their ancestors, are indeed like these symbolic rock formations, ancient and yet still standing tall at the edge of a precipice. Yet despite the uncertainty of the moment, sitting on the edge of a cliff, they persist, defying all the forces that seek to take them down. They are a people whose way of life is on the verge of extinction. If we care at all about those who first nurtured and cared for this land, then we must too stand with Standing Rock. We must stand at the precipice with them and fight for the injustice that has been inflicted upon them. It is the destiny of the water protectors to fight, that much is clear, and it is their destiny to be heard. 

You did not come to Earth without a guide. Evolutionary Astrology is a powerful tool for self-discovery and an exceptionally helpful guide in times of uncertainty, crisis or stagnation. Click here for reading options and pricing.

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The fight at Standing Rock is not over. Cheyenne River Sioux and Standing Rock Sioux have filed a lawsuit as of Feb. 9, 2017 in response to the USACE granting easement. There is another legal challenge to the Dakota Access Pipeline organized by Revolution Truth, a grassroots-based, human rights organization dedicated to protecting democratic principles and civil liberties. They are in need of funding to bring the case. 

Visit their gofundme page here
Revolution Truth website
RT interview with Tangerine Bolen

Here are some other ways you can support Standing Rock. Many need help with legal fees and cleanup costs....

Donate directly to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe

Sacred Stone Legal Defense Fund

Lakota People's Law Project

Rise With Standing Rock

NODAPL 2017 Action Hub

Further Reading

The Treaties of Fort Laramie

Standing Rock Reservation

Declaration On The Rights of Indigenous People

United Nations Document on DRIP