Mars/Saturn Opposition

Astro-Happenings: it’s May 24, 2017, and a Mars/Saturn opposition is taking shape…

Oppositions are Aspects that involve a Planet lining up precisely across the circle of the chart from another Planet. These relationships are believed to carry a certain amount of inherent tension. They’re very powerful connections, but the energies symbolized by the Planets often don’t want to play well together. They may even seem to set up circumstances in which they each demand attention simultaneously, but they turn out to be mutually exclusive propositions, so good luck with that.

SeesawWithKids_wbThink, for example, of that mainstay of schoolyard playgrounds, the seesaw. Only one end can be up at a given time, and when one end rises, the other one falls. This is essentially the whole point of the seesaw. Oppositions in Astrology can function along similar lines.

And as it so happens, Mars and Saturn are now moving toward that kind of perfect opposition. The moment of exact, 180-degree separation between the two won’t land until May 29, but the Aspect should be starting to make itself felt right around now, and will intensify for the next few days before it hits that crescendo next Monday.

So what can you expect from this celestial development…? First of all, as always, I seriously recommend that you hold this opposition up against your own birth-chart to see if you have any Planets or Points that will be directly contacted by our oppositional friends out there.

IMG_6545I’m providing a picture of my own chart so as to provide a strong example of what I mean by this. As I’ve indicated in the photo, transiting Mars and transiting Saturn (the real ones out there in space) will be lining up to create multiple squares with no less than four of my own natal Planets (the ones in my birth-chart). That may sound like gobbledygook when written out in English, but the accompanying image should make it pretty clear what’s happening. Squares can be every bit as tension-heavy as oppositions, and Mars and Saturn are not exactly warm and cuddly forces to begin with, so I’m bracing myself for a possibly intense week or two ahead.

But even if your situation is different from mine, and you have nothing coming specifically under fire in your own chart as these two so-called “malefic” Planets oppose each other, you might still experience some of the general feel of this occurrence. Sometimes big transits out there can symbolize something that’s so large and transpersonal that it leaks into even the charts of people who don’t have direct, Aspect-style receivers set up for it. So if that were to happen for you, what might that look like…?

Think about the two specific Planets involved here. Mars is hot and fiery, while Saturn is cold and dispassionate. Mars acts on impulse, while Saturn plans and calculates. When these two energies oppose each other, you may find yourself inclined to choose one of these Planets’s energies, and to set the other one’s aside.

Do you want to be assertive and adventurous and impulsive…or do you want to be cool and practical and patient? Do you want to crash full-tilt into things that are standing in your path…or do you want to build things up carefully from out of nothing? Do you want to be governed by your anger and lust…or do you want to be diligent and responsible?

As with any seesaw situation, you can make a conscious effort to try alternating between the two ends of the opposition: embrace your urges and your lusts for a set period, then fall back into allowing your serious, structured self to take the reins…lather, rinse, repeat…

And be especially aware that when these two Planets face off like this, one of the main recurring themes can be that of fear versus bravery. We all know that it’s possible to become overwhelmed by too much fear. Every human is undone by panic at some point in life, failing to do what needs to be done because the rising fear wins out over the sense of duty. It’s also just as possible to feel too little fear: the annual Darwin Awards are an ongoing catalog of people who aren’t nearly nervous enough when contemplating absurdly risky actions.

This Mars/Saturn oppositional period may well be inclined to throw multiple tests of courage your way. If this happens, try to remember to take a deep breath, and to look at the situation from both sides of the fear spectrum. It may be tempting to commit totally to one end or the other, but pure fearlessness probably won’t serve you any better than pure fear will.

Take an honest look at your own responses to the circumstances at hand, and assess whether those responses are in line with the amount of fear that the situation truly demands. If you’re veering too far toward the Saturnian end of things, you may be feeling more fear than the scenario warrants…but if you’re being too Martial, you may not be feeling enough of the valuable kind of apprehension that keeps us from picking up our own dubious Darwin Award. Discretion/valor ratio analysis is highly recommended as a coping tactic here – for the next week and change, go out of your way to pick your battles very, very well…

“Healing through Art” Event

18011022_1067850573359289_3828490227491402207_nIf you’ll be in the Providence, RI area tomorrow (Thurs., May 18), consider treating yourself to a dose of art therapy with the Thrive Tribe. The theme for this burst of creativity will be “Serenity”…and who among us has too much of that available…??

Details can be found HERE.

Full Moon in Scorpio

IMG_6515This is the chart for tonight’s Full Moon. This one is happening in the intense and sometimes scary territory of Scorpio. The chart points out a few interesting facts about this event.

For one thing, Pluto – the Planet that we humans named after the mythological Lord of the Underworld – will just happen to be located near the very bottom of the chart at the exact moment of the Full Moon. This seems like a fitting place for an Underworld God to be. Pluto is said to “rule” Scorpio, and anything in it, which would include the Moon during this passage, so Underworld vibes may be abundant this evening (and for a day or two on either side of the Full Moon). Pluto is also making a very agreeable sextile connection with the Moon, suggesting that the energies represented by these two symbols will be ready, willing, and able to work together in agreeable and potentially exciting ways.

With the Ascendant in Libra and a packed Seventh House, themes of partnership are also being pinged with some real enthusiasm during this Full Moon. Libra – the seventh Sign – and the Seventh House both have much to do with important one-on-one relationships. It could be that the grounding presence of the right partner may be exactly what you need to inspire you to not only descend into your own personal Underworld, but also to then find the strength within yourself to make the wearying climb back up into the light.

Uranus and Mercury are teaming up in the bold Sign of Aries to lend us courage if we embrace these strong partnerships. Honest communication will be key, and that Uranian input may result in oddity: odd partners, odd interactions, oddness welling up from within ourselves. If things get strange around this Full Moon, you can maybe take that as a Sign that you’re especially plugged into this one, and that you’re right where you need to be.

With the Lord of the Underworld himself encouraging a visit, and the light of the Full Moon to guide you and keep you safe, you have a fantastic opportunity for descending into the depths, retrieving something you stashed away down there in the dark a long time ago, and carrying it back up top so you can reclaim it and integrate it into your psyche. Your partner can’t travel down to the nether-regions with you – these are journeys we have to make by ourselves – but take comfort in the fact that the right partner will always be standing by, ready to help you in any way possible. Have faith in your partners…and have faith in yourself.

Happy Full Moon in Scorpio!

Full Moon on May 10th

Full Moon 5-10-17This coming Wednesday, the Moon waxes full in the rather intense realm of Scorpio. That means a lot of light shining into a lot of darkness, as Scorpio is the province of such weighty concepts as sex, death, secrets, power dynamics, psychology, and transformation.

If you’re in the Providence, RI area, please feel invited to drop in on the meditation/healing session I’ll be running at the headquarters space of the phenomenal Thrive Tribe! Several Reiki practitioners will be on hand for the event, so infusing the proceedings with positive, healing vibes is part of the central concept. We’ll also be focusing specifically on the idea that this Full Moon will be illuminating that shadowy Scorpio terrain.

And if you won’t be in the area, you can still do something in your neck of the woods to mark the event. An opportunity to carry some light down into the depths of Scorpion-territory is not to be missed!

Astro-Watch, May 3: Mercury Meanderings

First of all, for those of you who fear it when Mercury goes retrograde, then today is the day you’ve been waiting for. Today, Mercury stations direct. In regular-speak, that means our quick little neighbor stops its latest retrograde activities, and starts marching in forward-looking fashion again.

Today’s station is interesting even beyond what it might usually represent, because Mercury is almost on top of Uranus’ position in fiery Aries as it’s making this apparent reversal in its course. If you have any significant placements in your birth-chart in the same vicinity of Aries, or if you have anything in the corresponding late degrees of the other Cardinal Signs (Cancer, Libra, Capricorn), then you may really feel this event.

And then the presence of Uranus adds an extra dimension of newness and possible eccentricity to the proceedings. Uranus is the Planet of the Rebel, the Genius, the Exile, the Non-Conformist – so look for these energies to wash over your Mercury business at this time, lending your communications and thought processes an air of uniqueness, possible suddenness, and even some outright strangeness.

This might be an excellent opportunity for the cracking of codes, the solving of riddles, the running of mazes, and the dazzling of others with your inspired wordplay. You may also be on the receiving end of some important messages. Some astrologers like to say that Uranus is simply the “higher octave of Mercury” – the idea is that the former is sort of a more modern, more sophisticated updating of the latter, like a huge, oddball “Mercury 2.0.”

Whether you subscribe to this view or not, though, this combination of Mercury’s direct station and its conjunction with Uranus does feel like an indicator that our communications may be primed to experience noticeable surges forward in the categories of progress, passion, and maybe overall weirdness for a minute. Brace yourself for the oddity, but don’t shy away from it – instead, lean right into it, speak your truths as needed, and allow others to do the same. Your word is your wand…what spells do you want to be casting with yours today?

Astro-Watch, April 28th: Venus Enters Aries

Today, our often-demure relationship Planet, Venus, steps across a Zodiac threshold. The Goddess of Love returns from the watery realm of Pisces to cross back over into the fiery terrain of Aries.

She made this particular crossing once already this year, back on February 3rd…but then she turned retrograde a month after that, and retreated back into Pisces on April 2nd, presumably to revisit some of the structures of the relationships we maintain with whatever we consider “Divine.” Pisces does, after all, lend a rather mystical and transcendental flow to anything that might happen to come splashing through its liquid gates.

Today, though, Venus emerges again from that Piscean seascape, and strides with purpose on into the blazing arena of Aries. Since Venus symbolizes the human drive to have relationships, this clearly puts a new spin on our interpersonal dynamics.

Where our relationships down here on Earth may have been backburnered behind our more cosmic connections with the Universe itself for the last month, we’re now at the start of a whole new Zodiac cycle. Brash Venus in Aries is far less dreamy and celestial-minded than Venus in Pisces. It can be helpful sometimes to think of the Planets as people, and the Signs as suits of clothing that those people wear. Using that analogy, it’s like lovely Venus had been outfitted in a portable sensory-deprivation tank and a pair of 5-D glasses, but is today trading those in for combat gear.

Aries is the Sign of the Warrior, so our relationships may reflect this big shift at this time. We may be quicker to anger than usual in our exchanges with others for a while, and more impatient. We might grow more competitive, and more attracted to debating, arguing, or even outright fighting (and then making up afterwards). Relationships may serve as trigger-points for testing our courage in some fashion, and they may be pathways to adventure.

This could also be a time of new relationships appearing – keep in mind, though, that Aries-energy is terrific at starting things, but not so across-the-board excellent at finishing them, so maybe remind yourself that there’s value in seeing things through to their later stages. And Aries can also at times lend a decided air of lust to the proceedings when it can sift its energies into a set of circumstances, so this could be a period of increased desire for you and those around you. Try to keep accurate track of what will stand as legitimate and possibly enduring passion, versus what’s just heat of the moment.

Venus will be fire-walking through Aries until June 6th, when she wanders over the next border into Taurus, which will be yet another very different type of vibe. We’ll get there in a month or so…but until then, see if you can wring some enjoyment out of the bold, direct, forceful frequency of the Sign of the Ram!

Saturn/Chiron Square: April 30th

Astrology Update: Just as one tough square fades, another steps up to take its place… You may have felt the effects of the Venus/Saturn square that’s been testing our relationship structures since around the time April Fools’ Day was applying pies to faces all across the land. Thankfully, that square is fading now, and likely has only a few more days of fight left in it.

What’s probably of more pressing importance now is the fact that Saturn has found a new partner to square-dance with in the form of Chiron. This already powerful square is building toward peak effect this coming Sunday, April 30th.

So what does all that mean…? First of all, as always, you really need to plot this activity against what’s going on in your own birth-chart. Do you have anything around the 27th degree of Sagittarius (where Saturn is right now) or the 27th degree of Pisces (where Chiron is kicking it for the time being)…? Or do you have anything in the corresponding degrees of the other Mutable Signs, Gemini and Virgo? If so, this square may pack an extra bit of wallop in your world. The same may hold true if Saturn or Chiron are highly influential in your chart in general.

But outside of putting thumbtacks in maps, it may help to ponder the symbols involved here in broad terms, too. Saturn symbolizes a rather chilly, impersonal force in the Universe. It wants us to be excellent in all things, but its preferred methods are not of the warm and cuddly variety. Saturn plants foot in posterior when it wants to motivate. Saturn is a drill instructor, a merciless personal trainer, a constipated auditor doing a full and scathing review of your financial records.

When Saturn shows up with sickle in hand, the question is always: How much preparation have you done leading up to this visit…? If you’ve been diligent in your work, putting in the time, attending to details, and not cutting corners, then you’ll probably pass Saturn’s tests with flying colors. If you’ve been careless, lazy, or prideful in your approach, though, Saturn is likely to dash your shabbier efforts apart like trembling little houses of cards. These types of Saturn visits can lead to periods of rebuilding, damage control, and even razing everything down to the soil and starting over from scratch.

And what about Chiron? This “Planetoid” is named for a mythological character dubbed “the Wounded Healer.” In darker times, Chiron is more about the soul-wounds that we carry around with us. These are the traumas that seem built right into us, and that may even to some extent define us. In more positive periods, though, Chiron emphasizes the healing and the healer parts of that “wounds/healing” spectrum. During Chironic passages, we may find ourselves more able to heal others, and maybe even more able to heal ourselves. Epiphanies and rejuvenation may be on the menu.

So is this square period more about the wounds or the healing…? It’s important to think about the nature of the square relationship. Any Aspect that links two Planets together represents an occasion of those Planetary energies trying to work together. Some Aspects are easier and more user-friendly to experience, though. The square is one of the more friction-heavy varieties. Squares can feel uncomfortable and abrasive to the spirit when they exert themselves, and they can signify instances of Planetary energies merging badly, misfiring, or even working against each other. Planets in square can bring out the worst in each other.

In this case, just as Saturn has been taking harsh and critical stock of our relationships lately (that now fading Venus/Saturn square), and shaking them vigorously to see if they’ll come apart or not, with this new square, the same sort of attentions will be turned upon our wounds and our health. This isn’t to say we’re all doomed or anything – squares aren’t necessarily deadly, and we’ve all lived through thousands of them in our lives, and we’re still here. But the point is that this may be a time during which old hurts are brought to the surface, and loneliness and depression come easily. Saturn might dig a few fingers repeatedly into your tenderest bruises just to verify that those bruises still cause you pain. Recurring hot-button issues may be triggered, and it’s possible that actual physical health woes could surface alongside any mental, emotional, or spiritual ones.

The best thing to do is to work with Saturn’s demands rather than against them. Take extra-good care of yourself for the next two months or so until this square has had time to fizzle out. Make some positive changes to your diet, be a bit more devoted to some sort of exercise regimen, meditate with some regularity, and be very realistic with yourself about what your own strengths and weaknesses truly are (as opposed to what you’d really, really like them to be).

And it’s not all bad news. While squares can be tricky to weather, they’re still very powerful connections between Planets. And as mentioned, Chiron can bring about sudden revelations, and fairly sweeping upgrades in a person’s worldview, especially regarding those aforementioned soul-wounds. Maybe study your wounds: what are they, how have you approached them in your life, and how might you either view them differently, or try to deal with them in ways you haven’t yet tried? Even when Chiron is being squared, opportunities for great healing can still manifest – just don’t let Saturn’s heavy presence get you so down and depressed that you fail to make use of them!