by Boots Hart, CAP

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Sun in Taurus

A Monarch Butterfly
(photo credit: Tony Hisgett, September 2011)
There’s something nice about the idea that those in power (whoever they were) decided to schedule Earth Day for an early Taurean degree. The event falls on April 22nd and the sign which goes with it is all about both the qualities of being ‘secure’ or ‘secured’ on this planet ... and whatever gives us that sort of personal security.

So Taurus isn’t ‘about’ money. Or luxury goods. Or even food. It’s about the sense of security those things give us. Our world has taught us that if we have money we have a better ability to guarantee our survival, but the money itself is not Taurean. What money gives us is the security to think in broader terms, which is why one enterprising U.S. ex-governor (whose name I don’t recall, please forgive me...) spoke of his time trying to live on welfare’s stipend for a couple of weeks as an exercise which taught him that the essential and inescapable trial of hunger and poverty is not about whether someone is lazy or a go-getter, but how knowing we have so little stops us from thinking in terms of what we can do, instead forcing us to consider what we can’t do if we hope to see another day.

That sort of insecurity is the instinct which underlies Taurus. In Taurus we learn to take care of our Self so we can develop, so we can learn to master our body, our mind, our feelings and through all those lessons, our life.

And anything that threatens that? Or which could possibly change that when we haven’t (Gemini) thought about it and ultimately (Leo) chosen it?

That which threatens to change our life without our agreeing to it stands in opposition to our ability to feel intrinsically (individually) secure about ‘owning’ (being in control of) our own life.

In other words, it stands in opposition to the basic Taurus premise. And that sign ... that influence is Scorpio.

In Taurus, we own our Self. All things Taurus are about that Self, the owning of that Self, the having confidence in that Self and recognizing that Self as our primary and most important resource ... which is why we work to determine what our abilities are and aren’t (Taurus people are famous for standing their ground and defending the value of said position in all cases and either direction!) ... from which comes our sense of valuing of those abilities (and therefore our Self for having developed them).

Against all of this is that very peculiar Taurean instinct - an instinct which, in zodiacal terms, is purely instinct since Taurus precedes Gemini, the sign of our development of conscious and useful mentality.

From that - from that ‘pre-mentality’ Taurean state we face others, instinctively self-defensive (at least Aries precedes Taurus!)... and that’s why Taurus-Scorpio is the polarity wherein we face our fears.

Fear is instinctive. In Scorpio - an interactive sign - others test our security ... our Taurean Self ... all along the emotional border where that Self chooses to interact - and thus risk something (even if it’s just a moment of your time) with, or in the presence of others. And how well we deal with that ability to risk our feelings ... well, while the experience of the risk (being interactive) may be Scorpio, the security of the Self, any part of which might just possibly be at risk in that Scorpio situation, that part of the saga is entirely Taurus.

It’s that part of us which values us and works to keep us safe. Or which doesn’t keep us safe. Or which simply won’t risk.

Or which dares not feel what it means to fear because the loss of false security is such a fearful thing.

War - any war against others or some situation is Scorpionic, whether we're at war with(within) our Self and prone to inflicting the byproduct of that nastiness on others, whether we're in a direct contest with others, whether we're at war with some control or restriction or whether that war is against some civil entity or faction of civilization against some other faction of civilization.

And yet peace also requires a fight. That's the nature of fixed signs - to struggle to create and to struggle to contain, which here pits 'my (Taurus) reality' against what (Scorpio) makes that reality feel safe or not.

That's the fight - our fight to get us past our own instinctive Taurus fears to where we can (Gemini) understand the world and our options and choose based on our own cooler (Gemini) ability to think and be rational. In other words, if we haven't resolved our 'fear of our own fears' on an individual basis, we aren't likely to have sufficient peace all the way around.

And yet, it's so much easier to (Scorpio) vent than (Taurus) take our Self on.

Sunset on Australia's Middle Park Beach
(photographer unknown)
You know, by moving from the second stage in the zodiacal process - the Taurean stage - into Gemini, where with our fears in check we learn to gather information, sort through our priorities and choose, plan and set about our daily (or lifelong) business.

In the case of the current ingress, the Sun is entering Taurus at 9:43 in the morning of April 20th (UT/+0 time) in trine to Pallas (still in station mode) and square an Aquarian Ceres, speaking to not just to our relationship with society or ‘social/societal forces,’ but to something which focuses on (or simply focuses) our perspective on all such matters - that being the Pallas part of things. Pallas detaches us from things so we can 'see' what they are more clearly, whether that takes accepting something else or isolating (or becoming isolated) from some group, idea, lifestyle, system or information/comprehension, and given Pallas' April 19th turn to retrograde, we are all in the process of either internalizing something or seeing something about (or possibly in) our Self.

And that process ... or just the facts we come up with ... those things are helping us gain (Pallas) perspective on our instincts. Or maybe our various forms of ‘immaturity’ (physical or emotional) in play ... or where we are quite possibly the ‘immature’ player, whether that means we (or something) is as yet not ready for something, whether someone is simply being childish or whether the reference here is to something or someone who is just ‘young,’ whether in age or their own perspective - as one might be for reasons of lack of education, lack of mental health, or any other reason which might mark someone as not capable of (or willing to) interact on a level of equivalency or as an equal.

With Venus (the ruler of Taurus) transiting Gemini as the Sun enters Taurus, this year’s ‘Taurus Experience’ is likely to start out as a slight ‘rounding’ or ‘gentling’ of thoughts (and the feelings promoted by those thoughts) initiated through general conversation and our everyday perceptions. Most of us are a little tired of - and ready to ‘give up’ or ‘get away from’ something we’ve already met up with which we’d like to respond to (or manage) with some level of panache (and if not panache, at least competency!) ... and there’s something weighing on us which we either don’t yet know how to get done, or which we don’t want to do incorrectly and which we want to get organized before embarking upon.

Maybe even before we mention it.

Moreover, not everyone which is going on is likely to be pleasant or friendly-feeling all the way along the line. As of yesterday’s New Moon (that being the New Moon at 28 Aries - see previous post) Mercury - which is also in Taurus - came into orb of conjunction to Mars. Mars being already about half way through Taurus is representing all those things which we want ... which as Mars reaches the Taurean cross-quarters point (15 Taurus) is life pushing us to move from a ‘learning’ mode into an ‘application’ mode.

Mercury-Mars in a Taurus conjunction can represent determination. Then again, it can also represent frustration - even hostility towards self, others or (as we would suspect), some level of fear driven by a sense of lack or incapacity, perhaps. So while we may be wanting to be the person who determines something, this conjunction (which perfects at 15 Taurus on April 22nd, and which ends on April 25th) is also an opportunity to ‘try’ something or when you ‘determine’ what you want to do. Perhaps you’ll embody this by becoming determined to master some task, whether you’re trying to understand, work with or accept and interact some notion, value or fact.

Or maybe you’ll just be not wanting to admit to anything, right or wrong. Or you're just not in any mood to be challenged.

Any Mercury-Mars conjunction is going to provoke feelings of some sort. It's as if all we can (Mercury) think about is what we absolutely want ... or really truly don't like (a lot).

And that stirs many a feeling - and often some sort of instinctive (read: not necessarily well thought out) assertive (Mars-type) reaction.

 A rural road in northern Switzerland
(Benjamin Gimmel, April 2004)
We are in other words, simply prone during this period to getting ourselves bogged down (or allowing ourselves to be stuck) in simply not wanting to change because we don’t want to.

And yes, this could be exactly the sort of immaturity being challenged - or which we are finding so very (very) challenging in others. This ‘planted in one spot’ quality is something all the earth signs adopt as a methodology at least some of the time, with the Taurus attempt to ‘own’ that which it opposes without having to actually ‘touch it’ generally taking manifesting as various attempts to control or manipulate without actually getting involved.

In other words, Taurus is the sign under which we often attempt to interaction with others without having anything apply to us ... which sounds like a way to protect one’s (Taurean) resources, but which inevitably leads to starving your Self of input and everything which could in the long run provide the tools and keys to inner security.  

People talk about Taurean negativity as ‘stubbornness’ often without any conception of how limiting the choice to be stubborn for the sake of being stubborn is ... and how the refusal to consider anything else is not about strength, but about a fear of our own vulnerabilities. And sure, we’d all rather have someone else carry our emotional baggage, but when we do that, we poison our own chances for the kind of long-lasting strength of security which can only be achieved through self-knowledge and self-confrontation.

Moreover, life truly wants to give us what we ask for. So when we fear others doing something to us - that’s what metaphysics says will happen ... which is something worth thinking about. This doesn’t mean we should think only happy, candy-coated thoughts as that doesn’t apply - not to mention how such sugar-coating is hardly honest, and avoidance of honesty is a sure sign of those underlying lacks of self worth which are so negative Taurus.

 Buffalo grazing on the Wyoming grasslands
(photo credit:Ron Nichols, United States Department of Agriculture) 
In short, if you don’t want a war - with others or with yourself, deal with the fear within. The fear we don’t deal with we project - which does nothing other than offer opportunities to those who will fill in that gap and give us something to fear in reality.

It’s harder ... but ultimately probably a lot more productive to face our fears on our own. Once we do that, then we can live in the security of our own core providing validity and security to everyone else ... which in any mode and by any means is one of the better definitions of human success.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Pluto’s New Moon Vega Station

Fixed star Vega, photographed here by the Spitzer Space Telescope,
is twenty-five light years away from us in constellation Lyra
(photo credit: JPL, NASA)
As this post hits the digital airwaves, dwarf planet Pluto is going on station. The actual station-retrograde moment occurs at 3:52 in the morning on Friday, April 17th (in the UT/+0 time zone), but given the nature of stations as indicators of things ‘taking a turn’ in life, it just isn’t unusual for things to happen just in advance - or just after - a station’s occurrence.

And the likelihood of something Plutonic happening to you...? That increases (or decreases) with how exactly Pluto aspects your natal chart.

The closer the aspect, the stronger the effect.  And since we’re talking Pluto, the closer to the actual time and date of station, the more transformative the effect. With Pluto going from direct motion into retrograde, we’re going from just shy of seven months of adapting to externally into about five months of changing on the inside - or finding out how we’ve already changed, and what that means to us in some long(er) run.

With Pluto taking this ‘turn’ in perfect conjunction with fixed star Vega, part of what we’re going through involves a sorting through standards and ‘structures,’ be they physical, mental, moral, fiscal, occupational or otherwise - and what we’re finding there is that things are either changing ... or never were what we wanted to think they were to begin with.

And no, we can’t forget about it.

Nor are we particularly enthralled about it, even in the case of those (you know who you are...!) who are utterly determined to resist, that being one of the easiest things to read from the grand trine (in earth signs) which Pluto is in as it goes into retrograde.

This‘resisting’ force is symbolized by Mars, though at 12 Taurus there is every chance that some of us will be beginning to tackle or work through things which have been resisted, but which for whatever reason are now beginning to be recognized as an area of life or attribute or situation in need of investment and attention, not something simply to be taken on its hard-shell face.

The other member of this triad being Black Moon Lilith at 15 Virgo, an odd combination which speaks either to a determined effort to deny any responsibility for dealing with particular facts/truths even if they will benefit your aim, goal or ‘cause’... or which speaks to some sort of determined effort which, in seeking to control how others act, think or prioritize, gets confronted by some sort of transformative energy which ends up changing the goal or the point of the effort itself.

Moreover, this particular Pluto station is also part of an ‘almost complete’ grand sextile.

In not being complete, this figure won’t be important to many of us. However, IF you’re someone with a planet, dwarf planet, node, cusp or axis point positioned between 4 and 7 degrees of Libra in your natal chart, that point will complete this grand sextile (filling in the question mark above), telling us that what you’re doing and things which are now in progress are going to change your life - not just transform your direction or change your mind but change your life in fairly short order.

This doesn't have to be a big change - but it can be. It may be something only you recognize or even suspect. It may only matter to you. Or it may have not ever  crossed your mind until now. With this being a grand sextile in fire and air taking place as Pluto takes station in an earth signs, there is a bit of an abstract quality about something both fateful and very real ... which in time you will grow to recognize as a learning experience you were never in control of.

And even if you’re not on the grand sextile list, there are two other figures included with fire and air sign sprinkle, one of which is a Kite... 

... and the other of which is a Magic Rectangle...

...which unlike the possible grand sextile DO both apply to everyone - at least as ‘modifiers’ to whatever Pluto station matters we’re each experiencing.

Not that they work the same way, though. Kites speak of opportunities which we want to harness, or which need to be harnessed, lest something get off course or fail to live up to its nature. Kites ‘aim’ at a goal which is pictured by the object at the top of the kite - which in this case, is Ceres at 3 Aquarius, speaking to difficulties or people who are experiencing painful difficulties and our efforts to guard against such things, to fix whatever may be causing the difficulties, or even the determination to ‘guard’ or ‘protect’ some painful status quo from criticism or interference.

But with kites, we don’t ‘aim’ right for the goal - we ‘steer’ towards it, doing that steering from the position of the kite’s “tail” (here, Juno at 7 Leo),  which if you think of that point as where a kite’s string would attach makes total sense.

As for Juno at 7 Leo, that speaks to a (Juno) managing or management of some situation, aim or tendency through the intelligent construction (constructing) of that which is the most creative and ‘aimed at’ (this being the Aquarius part) not one’s personal aims, but those bigger or more overarching considerations which if improved will bring about the result or reward we are hoping for (and thus our personal rewards).

Pluto Station-Retrograde (glyph chart)
April 17, 2015 - 3:52 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Pluto station-retrograde (text chart)
April 17, 2015 - 3 52 (UT +0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Magic rectangles differ from kites in that kites are something we actively do (or are in the middle of doing) and magic rectangles refer most often to things which are, or which have been set up, created or which have come to be without all that much effort on our part, and which because they are just so ‘magical’ (and more or less magically effortless) in our lives we don’t tend to value as someone else - someone who doesn’t have our talent, our heritage or inheritance, how someone who doesn’t have our problems OR our privileges might see things.

And that being what it may, all goes well (or terribly) for us in this seemingly unending way until something ‘breaks the spell’ and the magic suddenly ends.

Once “broken” (which with a natal magic rectangle is timed through difficult transits to the points which make up the figure) magic rectangles are difficult to heal, solve or otherwise resurrect. It’s as if the ability remains, but because it wasn’t “worked for” in the “normal” sense, there seems to always be some sort of inability to put things back together.

In this case (a strictly transiting magic rectangle), the points are Ceres, Saturn, Juno and Venus, with Venus in opposition to Saturn and Ceres (as we just discussed in reference to the kite) in opposition from Leo to Aquarius. Saturn is still at 4 Sagittarius - the degree it was at when it went retrograde back on March 14th ...

... and Venus is at 6 Gemini, a degree known for separating fact from fiction and facts from feelings, resulting in insights which though correct can prove very unpopular and a preference (or need to remain confined to) surface examinations, perhaps because this degree insists on equal emphases on ability and (emotional) motivation if success is to be achieved.

Venus/Saturn in opposition is considered one of the few oppositions which are fortunate (and even sometimes stabilizing) in business world and when it comes to dealing with money. This combination is also very good for making plans which require consideration of details and/or ‘costs,’ be they financial or to anything else - such as a schedule or some other plan which now needs to be changed.
Pluto’s station isn’t affecting any of these dynamics directly. But that they are occurring at the same time as Pluto’s station does suggest how, with regards to something in your life which you identify personally as having its reflection in either with the grand sextile, the kite or the magic rectangle (or maybe all three!) ... how that situation or effort is going through a transformative time.

Or how ‘other’ (Pluto) things around you in life and the world which are in the process of changing are causing (even forcing) you to alter your plans - maybe even fatefully so.

And that things may (read: will) change? Or that they’re changing? Or that many of us will be or become the person who enacts that change - or that we’ll begin changing in our own life?

With Pluto turning to retrograde on the 17th just a day after Earth has begun its annual Lyrid Meteor Shower (and a day before a New Moon at 28 Aries on the 18th) we are getting a double dose of finger pointing in the Vega direction. After all, not only is Pluto going retrograde in perfect conjunction with Vega, but this station is occurring one day after the Lyrid Meteor shower (which runs from April 16th through the 25th) begins.

Constellation Lyra is, after all, where Vega lives.

And if that’s not enough, comet Thatcher (the comet which produces the Lyrids) has its radiant (apparent origination point) IN Lyra, a constellation which portrays the ‘musical instrument’ (and ‘harmonic tones,’ one could argue) used by god Apollo.

Which makes perfect sense when we think of Vega as the heart of this constellation and thus a symbol of all which softens our resistance and ‘attunes’ us to the qualities of Apollo’s enlightenment - that being so very close to what we call ‘charisma.’

So this issue of what pleases us, what we think ‘looks good’ or ‘sounds good,’ the qualities of charisma (that which enchants us) and/or our qualities of charisma (that with which we enchant others) ... all that is now up for grabs (one hopes not literally) with what others think of us as easily transformed as what we think of them (or ‘that,’ should our focus be a situation, goal or object rather than a person).

Does that mean everything will go wrong now?

Not necessarily. It all really depends on our relationship to Plutonic forces and desires - said desires so often being aimed at what we want others to do or be, when the real issue is how vulnerable we really feel. We’re all exceptionally good at fooling ourselves on this point - we tend to think Plutonic acts and choices are about our ‘strength’ instead of our fervent desire not to be seen as weak.

Or maybe worse yet, to have to live with our feelings of incapacity, weakness or vulnerability. That, we REALLY don’t like, especially at times when Pluto energies become active.

You know, like about now. So we can all expect to be going through some ‘stuff’ which we don’t like at all - and in response to what we think of as something someone else is “doing to us” (or to our efforts), we are likely to get all hot and Pluto-obsessive, which is not the way we “win” (or prevail) where Pluto is concerned.

Here’s the Pluto rule: no matter how demanding or upsetting the situation is, first, know your position. Then state it - ONCE - in its simplest and most honestly and complete terms.

Then BE QUIET. Go about your business. Let the fur fly. Let others stir up all the dust they want to stir up.

If you have understood the problem and truly proceeded on honest facts, and IF you have chosen your course of action (or priorities) based not on emotion but on an understanding of your fears as well as the needs of others (without giving in emotionally to either side) ... then, when the dust settles, you will win out.

I know - this sounds odd. Particularly odd as we associate Pluto with passion, obsession and overwhelming odds, feelings and outcomes. But that’s just the point: Pluto’s positives are outcomes which occur when we do things for the right reason, not because we desire a given outcome.

And when we don’t go that route?

That’s when Pluto becomes a symbol of an emotional world of pain ... a painfully emotional world and a world of emotionality driven by pain.

So what does all this mean in connection with a New Moon in Aries - specifically at 28 Aries?

Every New Moon is about something new, be it the phase of a continuing project, a new perspective on something or someone you know or a new plan, reason or action which leads to getting something done, whether externally or otherwise.

New Moon in Aries (glyph chart)
April 18, 2015 - 19:56 (7:56 pm) UT/+0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
New Moon in Aries (text chart)
April 18, 2015 - 19:56 (7:56 pm) UT/+0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Before we move on, a few notes from the ‘Oh, What a Difference a Day Makes’ file. Between the time Pluto goes on station and the New Moon, the Moon will have moved over twenty degrees, completely disrupting the grand sextile and kite formations seen at Pluto’s station.

The magic rectangle is still there. Pluto’s private grand trine is still there. But the opportunity (or perhaps the need) which might have allowed us to steer something - that’s over.

Being at 28 Aries, this New Moon will emphasize  personal issues in that we’re likely to take things personally - even overly so, as in the case of those who will see something happen in the world around them and give up or walk away. Aries is always a fairly temperamental sign this way, but its not always as prone to disappointment (and all which goes on inside of us when we’re feeling disappointed) as at the moment.

Some of this may be useful in how it may be a reflection of our realizing that something we’ve been doing is either ‘over’ or it’s not going to work (or can’t work) the way we thought it would - which for some equals defeat. But for others, maybe it just means we need to take a step back and think (or plan) through again. At least one astrologer has written about this degree as having something of a different response depending on our age as well, with younger people feeling more disappointments (or feeling their setbacks more acutely) than those who have lived long enough to think of life in less black-and-white terms.

But whoever we are, this New Moon’s degree - and thus the lunar month it is spearheading emphasizes support, help and the equal abilities of men and women to be receptive of others and generous in kind.

Evidently that matters at the moment. Not only that, it’s also part of everything we’re doing by way of sorting through the differences between what we thought was ‘worth it’ or valuable or inspirational or what we wanted ... and what things have turned out to be-and/or-become.

With Pluto going retrograde on the 17th, the two-day station allowance we give such events ends on Sunday the 19th. And since Sunday the 19th is the date that Pallas goes retrograde (at 0 Capricorn) and the second of April’s scheduled meteor showers (the Eta Aquarids) begins, in the wake of Pluto’s station ... and the New Moon ... it would appear we will be ‘sparked’ to some new (Pallas) or new level of perspective.

Pallas has been sitting at 0 Capricorn since it entered the sign just after Jupiter’s station on the 8th, promoting patience and the need for patience as much with our Self as others as we try - often ineffectively - to communicate forms of inner truth to others even as we protect our beliefs or abilities from unnecessary harm. Will Pallas’ going retrograde mean we will now gain some perspective on our Self as to why we get listened to and not listened to? Not necessarily, but maybe. What would seem to be likely apart from that would be our gaining some ‘transformative’ perspective through (or as) we simply live through these days - which in its own way will give us perspective on who we have been being ... who we can be ... and why one thing might work better for us than another. Given Pallas’ turn to retrograde as the Eta Aquarids start up (they start on April 19th and run until May 28th), we can expect some natural societal, society, social, systemic and networking energies - anything which to us defines the path to and experience of ‘success’ (however we define that) to be part of this mix. Given the Aries New Moon, there are aspects of this introduction of Big Picture Aquarian (Eta Aquarid) vibe which apply to health, lifestyle and overall functionality ... and then again, there are aspects of the current energetics which are very definitely more egocentric - and about whether our ego is getting in the way (our way).

Plus, there is the fact that this part of the station - the ‘aftermath’ and evolutionary part which starts us into seeing what we need to leave behind and where we need to go in order to renew or reinvent our Self and efforts in times ahead ... all of that is taking place on the day when the Sun is at 29 “critical” degrees of Aries - a degree known as useful to those willing to make determined efforts (now and in the days, weeks and months to come) and which though not particularly elegant, is willing to grapple with the ugly as well as the beautiful, if only because the energy of 29 Aries seeks to build on that which is solid while eliminating the tendency to hesitate or otherwise waste time and energy on appearances which in the end are merely ‘advertising.’

In the end, we are what we do. That’s very 29 Aries - as is the inbuilt-desire and effort to work peacefully and to have everything work out for the best as the Sun moves on into Taurus, where who we are (and aren't) come back to haunt us not only through what we are (and have done through a month of Aries-centric self-motivated doings) - but through what we aren't, especially in our own soul.

Thus will we be ... and find ourselves transformed.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Mercury enters Taurus

In keeping with the Sabian Symbol for 0 Taurus, "A CLEAR MOUNTAIN STREAM"
(phase 31), a photo of a tumbling Alpine stream in Mollis, Switzerland.
(photo credit Glarnerwolf, October 2014)
For all those whose brain circuitry is feeling all jumpy or overloaded even with Venus now in Gemini, calming influences are theoretically on the way in the form of Mercury entering Taurus at 22:53 (10:53 p.m.) UT/+0 time on Tuesday, April 14th.

And yes, this may mean you go directly from jumpy to all stodgy or stuck-on-a-stick-(ish), but at least with Mercury’s entrance into Taurus many a thing (human and otherwise) which has come to have a ‘mind of its own’ to the extent that the possible good is being offset by too much consciousness of Self ...or, particularly in the case of inanimate or insentient situations or objects, where there simply isn’t enough ‘integration’ to keep continuation of whatever is going on from creating problems for others/other parts of some ‘food chain.' (Which, in some cases could refer to actual - Taurus - food and/or issues connected to food, eating and the entire spectrum of 'nourishment' as a concept or practice.)

Being our solar systemic indicator of mentality and mental pacing, tone and potential, Mercury’s entering Taurus will reflect in something of a shift in thinking habits. Gone will be the drive and edge so common under Mercury in Aries - and gone too will be the tendency to think primarily (if not only) in terms of our Self, a habit which can be plenty disruptive under Mercury in Aries even if it also is a sign of standing up for one’s self or taking some stand.

Moreover, we’re not all that ‘done’ with learning a few new things. The first three signs of the zodiac (Aries, Taurus, Gemini) are all about learning who we are - and a lot of that learning gets done through other people (i.e., through influences described by the three signs in oppositional polarity to those first three signs).

In Taurus, Mercury seeks ways for things to be secure and secured. Optimally, this combination of sign and planetary symbol speaks to our confidence, our ability to cope when challenged by anything.

But therein lies the rub, if you get my drift. The oppositional sign to Taurus being Scorpio, all things Taurean become or tend to be tested by episodes of push-pull or through ‘discussions’ which we either have with our Self about that Self (and what they are or aren’t doing) ... or ‘discussions’ with-or-about others, with all of this basically being about what ‘worth’ means, and what in life really deserves our time, effort, loyalty, resources, sacrifices or anything other part of our life.

In short, why should we care? Or ... should we care?

Under Taurus we may feel guilty for being selfish or unequal to a looming challenge. We may take to thinking of ourselves as having done all we need to do, or we may recognize that we could do something if we would just prepare ourselves for the task (and eventual triumph!) through committing to some sort of Self-development.

And given the nature of Mercury, variations on these themes are what we are going to think about, talk about and experience from April 14th until Mercury moves on into Gemini come May 1st.

During that transit, Mercury will go retrograde. The dates are from May 19th through June 11th, and that Mercury is going to go retrograde under Gemini means that apart from things which are happening at that time (and which are totally unique to the moment) ... that makes Mercury’s transit of Taurus a period when what we are doing may well in some way end up connecting or contributing to whatever we are focused on (or possibly hung up by) during Mercury’s retrograde period.

Does that mean we will be so focused ...or so determined to finish something (come what may) that we end up making some miscalculation or omission which ends up forcing us to double back as is so common under Mercury retrograde? Might it mean we’re trying to hit/adhere to some deadline because once Mercury enters Gemini (or goes retrograde) we will have missed some known opportunity?

There’s another way to see the whole of this Mercury in Aries, Taurus and Gemini process which also may well apply here, particularly if you’re looking longer term (months or years, as opposed to days or weeks). Considering all else (the recent eclipses and such) and being how all three cited signs are zodiacal first quadrant signs (pertaining to learning about our Self, our abilities or things we need to know in order to effectively live our life), everything we do from now until Mercury enters Cancer (and the zodiac’s 2nd quadrant) is on some level part of an overarching ‘project’ - the inborn ‘project’ we have to tackle simply because we are what and who we are as living beings on this planet in this time.

It sounds so serious. And survival is serious - hence Taurus’ relationship to security and all the ‘necessaries’ which allow us to proceed along our way through life, the most popular of which seem to be personal security (physical and emotional), food, shelter and money ... the basic stuff of life.

If this is you, if you are in the middle of a personal learning ‘project’ (or if you’re needing to tackle one), Mercury being anywhere in the first quadrant supports your investigations - and at the moment, though there is some fixed sign tendency with Mercury to stick on some point just because admitting you’ve been wrong triggers an inner/instinctive sense of vulnerability connected to “not knowing” how to take care of your Self, those who can get past the sticking to the digging into the process of doing, doing better or learning how or why your efforts aren’t effective ... they will all stand to learn a lot and even make themselves feel a whole lot better (about something) through the process of making that effort.

Mercury in Taurus (glyph chart)
April 14, 2015 - 22:53 (10:53 p.m.) UT/+0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Mercury in Taurus (text chart)
April 14, 2015 - 22:53 (10:53 p.m.) UT/+0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Of course for some this is a particularly prickly emotional time. That is to be expected in the wake of an eclipse which hit fixed star Scheat - which among other things stands for our ability to wall things out, and our willingness to project the responsibility for feelings and reactions onto others without realizing that if its your reaction its your problem.

And how where and when left unattended, how such denied (Piscean) feelings, no matter how we dress them up or what we call them, are in the long run damaging to everyone, including us and including those many others we would like to think we are ‘sparing’ the sort of grief we are hoping we can avoid through sheer denial.

It’s pretty futile, but people do this sort of thing anyway. We humans are always trying to tell ourselves that if we don’t (Mercury) acknowledge or think about it we won’t have to confront our (Pisces) feelings on the subject and risk facing our own (Taurus) sense of insecurity - that being our true ‘the enemy within.’

Our sense of security - in the end - has nothing to do with anyone else. It’s only and always about us. They’re our emotions, and therefore ours to feel and ours to own and take responsibility for. Furthermore, history and reality teaches us exactly the opposite of that fervent wish occurs when we (Pisces/Scheat) avoid truths as energy is never lost.

So all that energy that we don’t want to deal with - whether for reasons of eclipse denial which we’re now struggling with or because we just don’t WANT to (that stubborn fixed sign thing) ... it has to go somewhere, this being a real challenge posed by the fixed sign energetic. Fixed signs energies are easily applied to resistance or stonewalling - and that’s something we all should think about (and work through) while tackling those challenges which tend to arise when the Sun is in a fixed sign - which it will be once the Sun enters Taurus on April 20th.

We also encounter such energies when we deal with people born under fixed signs, too. (Know anyone who seems born to resist changes to the status quo?)

Fixing things in place (or affixing them in place) is a typical fixed sign tactic ... and also the primary challenge placed before any of the zodiac’s fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius). But just as cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn) need to learn to look before they leap ... and just as mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces) need to learn that never making up one’s mind or committing to a particular choice goes nowhere, fixed signs need to learn that to work at controlling things is not the object.

Learning to control our most immature and insecure Self ... that’s what frees us to think, plan and choose effectively, which apart from all else would be something we may well need to do (or consider) as a factor as Pluto (you remember Pluto, right? Dwarf planet? Obsessive reputation?)... as Pluto heads into its station and turns to retrograde at the end of this coming week (on the 17th), closing out the first of thirty-six months of Pisces/Scheat solar eclipse doings.

But first we have to get past whatever our personal issues with personal security really are - which generally has a whole lot to do with where we come from in life and things we experienced early on, all of which would be perfect to spend at least a bit of time musing through during these next few weeks.

NGC 7320 in constellation Pegasus, the constellation which
fixed star Scheat is part of.
(photo credit: NASA, ESA and the Hubble-SM4-ERO Team, July 2009)
Being that Mercury is coming into Taurus in a trine to Pallas at 0 Capricorn (Pallas entered Capricorn last week) we know there are issues (or yes, perhaps people) which matter ("structural," some would call them) and which (this being the 0 Capricorn part) we not only get much from thinking about, but which we 'connected to' and recognize that connecting on a level which is hard to define if vital to where we currently are in our belief in our Self ... and which we know we need to do more about ... or maybe with.

Pallas being an energetic which creates moments and views (or a 'vision') only attainable through cool-minded perspectives, this is likely to be an important - or at least lingering note being struck, if for no other reason than Pallas' impending turn to retrograde (as if you wanted to hear about another station?) at 0 Capricorn come April 19th.

Right now we are getting a perspective of life as offered by life and life circumstances. Once Pallas goes retrograde, perspective will turn on us - we'll see why we are or aren't what we thought or think we are.

But that's then, and this is now. And since Mercury’s transits through Taurus have long been spoken of as a time to develop or show what we’re capable of - most of all to our Self so that we can be confident and productive, not to mention secure in being our Self enough that we are even able to be there for, and interact with others - this is a useful time to think through all such possibilities as we work through our days and life's challenges. Given that we seldom attribute major life events to any of the so-called 'personal planets' (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars) when they're in transit, as with Venus' shift into Gemini a couple of days ago (see previous post) Mercury moving from one sign to another describes background perspectives and modes, just as Venus' placement by sign describes some of the general 'mood' we experience while pursuing our day-in, day-out daily doings.

And so we're clear here, all of this differs entirely (like, totally) from when our personal and natal Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus or Mars GETS transited by objects from Jupiter on outward into the cosmos.

Those periods (which when we talk about objects like Neptune can take a couple of years) ARE a big deal.

But as for now ...? Qualities we'd associate with Mercury and Taurus - the exploring of how to make what we have go farther and what's worth expending time, energy, attention or priorities on - with this combination of planet and sign, we expect to hear debates and conversations of many kinds, some of which we end up holding with ourselves (in our mind or otherwise) and some of which we experience as an interaction with others, all of it at base - no matter the surface text - being about the worth of things and how values and whether we care or don't care about this, that or them - whether any of it merits your time and loving attention.

And if so, which thing(s) matter - and why?

And all of this makes perfect sense if, when and where we think of Taurus as the sign before Gemini, Gemini being the zodiacal district of information gathering, choice and planning.

After all, before we choose, shouldn’t we get clear - at least to our own secure satisfaction - as to what matters so that based on that we will have the choice to choose intelligently or well?

One would think yes.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Venus in Gemini

A rainbow over the Delaware River at the Northhampton-Warren County line
(photo credit: Nicholas A Tonelli, May 2008)
I don’t know about you, but I’m glad eclipse season is over. (Well, as over as over gets in the wake of an eclipse season.) And yes, this one has been particularly mysterious in its workings ... but what would you expect from a solar eclipse which not is made to melt away our ability to deny that which we most don't want to know - not about others, but about our Self?

And just to make it all much less enjoyable (which wasn't exactly what anyone wanted, I'm sure), after the solar eclipse came a Libra lunar eclipse - just the thing to make everyone touchy about something (with that 'something' mostly being somebody else - or your relationship to someone else, I should say).

All this is my say of trying to say that unless you’re a glutton for outrageously slung cosmic punctuations (and the cosmos has really good aim...) then what you’d probably like to hear about now is something about a change.

Less emotion, more ease, perhaps? Some sense or inner feeling that yes, whatever you've just gone through (read: eclipse season) is over.

I may have just the thing. It's called Venus in Gemini, and it's going to occur April 11th at 15:30 (3:30 p.m.) UT/+0 time.

Does that sound good? How about if I say that if you think of it as a celestial breeze which caresses ever-so-lightly, stirring that sort of laugh which signals inner relief?

Those kinds of moments when we feel ourselves having gotten through something can be so very Venus in Gemini - Venus being the accomplishment and Gemini pointing to the mental processing and feeling rewarded.

But that's not the only thing we would associate with Venus in Gemini. This is a natural 'transactional' pair, so we can expect life to hand us more to do so we can go about transacting. Gemini also being the sign of phones, cars, mail and all things mundane, errand-like or scheduled, we should all expect more mail, more reasons to get in touch with others and an increase (and consideration) of traffic - be that traffic vehicular, communicative or mental. Venus in Gemini opens the way, first and last in our minds, to all those things which give us the sense that life has a future, a purpose, something to go after and achieve, whether that’s the getting of an idea, making some plan, learning about life’s options or otherwise choosing ... or choosing not to choose what you’ll do next, and - because you’re choosing whatever you’re choosing, what that says about who you are and what you (as an individual) value.

With Saturn transiting Sagittarius (Gemini’s opposition sign) the light touch associated with planet Venus in Gemini may indicate a ‘softening’ of something to the point that it becomes workable - or even just better understood. Conversely, where things have been too soft, or where we’ve been behaving like slightly-less-cohesive-than-desirable pudding about things, this combination may indicate the introduction of necessary structure(s) or disciplined dedication which solves problems, whether in the short or long run.

Speaking of ‘how long?,’ Venus will be transiting Gemini for just a day or two shy of four weeks - from April 11th through May 7th (both dates UT/+0). And since during that time (on the 17th, to be exact), Pluto will go retrograde at 15 Capricorn ... and since position Pluto is sharing 15 Capricorn with fixed star Vega, we should expect some unexpected (at least by most) ‘turns of fortune’ which generates a loss or rise in our regard for something (or someone) we have considered attractive, desirable or yea verily, charismatic.

With Mars still being in Taurus (Taurus now being the sign behind Venus’ position, putting Mars in a 12th house harmonic to Venus’ efforts to make things work for our personal intention and/or benefit), we want to understand certain limitations or misunderstandings or lack of clarity. And we may even be willing to make an effort or two to clear things up, as this sort of Venus/Mars semi-sextile-by-sign sets up a subtle if persistent uncertainty deep in the cockles of our (insert a favorite locale) which we aren’t going to escape any time soon as Mars is going to be in Taurus even longer than Venus’ transit of Gemini.

So that’s one fly in the ointment - and a fly which is likely to set up quite a flap around the 21st and 22nd (give or take your time zone) as Venus sextiles Jupiter (still at 12 Leo) and Mars trines and sets off some sort of ‘pending’ potential we’d think of as being associated with the astrology of Pluto conjunct Vega.

Venus in Gemini (glyph chart)
April 11, 2015 - 16 28 (4 28 pm) UT +0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
You know, some loss of innocence ... (a subject no one wants to experience or witness) ... particularly as that pertains to our Self, as we would expect in the wake of the Scheat eclipse.

The loss of innocence we’d be astrologically referring to here has to do with whatever it is in your life which people - or maybe life itself - has been trying to get you to you look at roughly since last November 10th, that being when transiting Mars last conjuncted transiting Pluto (the current Pluto/Mars trine being a ‘stage’ or ‘step’ in a process begun or re/initiated back then).

Venus in Gemini (text chart)
April 11, 2015 - 16 28 (4 28 pm) UT +0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
And though certainly it’s possible that the Venus sextile Jupiter occurring as Mars trines Pluto speaks to an opportunity to make something happen (or to change something without incurring bad feelings) with regards to some 2014-vintage issue, since Jupiter just went direct (don’t believe me? look at the previous post...!) ... with Jupiter having just gone direct, opportunities of the moment would seem to be ‘big’ opportunities. Rare opportunities. Even rarified opportunities.

And yet, they are just opportunities - which in astrological terms can ... but doesn’t have to be a positive thing. It’s just an opportunity - one which is what it is because of who you are and who you’re currently being (all of which is inscribed in your natal chart, don’t you know...).

Being that the Moon is conjunct Pluto-Vega as Venus goes into Gemini (yes, exactly conjunct) suggests a deal of feeling about whatever is changing (whether in reality or in your regard) from boring to charismatic or from brilliant to utterly wretched (or maybe just disposable) ... which on the positive side could indicate some sort of fascination or fixation (temporary versus long-term would depend on your natal chart) - or maybe just the birth of a habit. (How filmic.) Or who knows ... Maybe with Saturn’s opposition by sign marking Venus’ ingress points to the acquiring of something - or the forming of some long term plan (or at least some notion that you should make such a plan) during the course of Venus’ Gemini transit.

By itself - with all due respect to all the Venus lovers in the audience - this isn’t the world’s biggest or most noteworthy transit. But the fact that the Sun will also join the Taurus parade as of April 20th (just prior to the whole Venus/Jupiter + Mars-Pluto-Vega tra-la) ... that does tend to say that we’ll be taking things seriously during these days.

And who knows ... maybe a little too seriously, at that. We can hope that with Venus moving into  Gemini people will think more in terms of working to create the good things and all the positives they want rather than being as self-absorbed as negative moments have led everyone to be once Venus and Mars teamed up in Taurus as of April 1st.

And what’s wrong with that? Why wouldn’t we want Venus and Mars to be in the same sign?

Well ... it’s not that they’re in the same sign which could be a problem here, it's more about how Venus and Mars both being in Taurus (which began on March 31st when Mars moved into Taurus) ... how that put (Venus), the planet which represents how we turn what we’re doing and being into a “result” in a sign of its own rulership (Taurus) giving us the astrological image of the philosophical question which asked whether what we are doing or aiming to (Mars) do is only for our own sake-or-benefit ... or whether we are doing something for some greater benefit to all.

And that question applies to the eclipse - the effects of which are still in the process of revealing us to our daily (Gemini) consciousness - which is really the first chance we have to deal with things knowingly. 

Zodiac signs are like steps in a process ... years in a life ... the progression of an evolution. As Venus exits Taurus for Gemini it sets up the opportunity to find things out and thereby determine our priorities. It’s a promise that despite the seriousness of all the earth sign energy which insists on keeping us grounded (thereby separating human wheat from its chaff) we can have some lighter moments.

We can afford to both talk to someone and hear them.

We can, in other words, be more aware of who we really are when we choose to be or become that person we would be happy to see waiting at the end of a long, unbridled day.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Jupiter Direct

Jupiter and two of its moons, Europa and Callisto as photographed
by the Cassini spacecraft
(photo credit NASA JPL, December 2000)
Jupiter stands for growth - and all that we do, growing in our own abilities, to achieve that growth.

That said, Jupiter is also all about excess. So in one sense, Jupiter is about learning what we can do ... and on the other, it’s about all those not-so-nice things which happen when we go beyond the limit.

After all, that’s learning too, right?

In going direct at 12 Leo, Jupiter is speaking to days ahead and a chance - the opportunity - to broaden our regard. And in that, it also stands for what we are going to learn or end up teaching ourselves about the difference between enjoying we have and are and going through whatever it takes to recognize what the difference (or differences) are between the pluses of our life (specified as pluses - our ‘fortunate existence,’ being the way one astrologer put it) and what life is like for others of differing fortunes.

Or to put it another way, this is the Jupiter Principle - the ability and opportunity to expand what we know and experience on every level being applied to Leo, which is to say, specifically to the degree 12 Leo, which simply by placement (as part of the middle ten degrees of some sign) we know to be all about how we feel ... and our about ‘things Leo.’

And what is Leo all about? On a mundane level, Leo is about doing things we like to do. Or which we want to see ourselves learning how to do, learning how to be - and (of course) being a ‘winner’ at in the long run. (Probably preferably a short term long run, but that’s just par for the course.) Leo is all about developing our Self in a more-or-less ‘applied’ way - it’s not about ‘who am I?’ so much as ‘what am I capable of doing?’.

Leo degrees embrace a breadth of latitude - Leo energies are famously all about wanting to do our things our way (and please don’t tell me that I’m wrong) ... against which we should always remember that Leo energies are energies which are not-yet-mature or matured. Some take this ‘there’s still more to learn’ as a wonderful thing, celebrating how they’re not obsolete and haven’t yet met their limit - and others are just offended that the world doesn’t, hasn’t and evidently isn’t peachy keen about the idea of having to acknowledge each and every one of anyone’s Leo opinions as regally and universally correct.

There’s an air of nobility about Leos and the attitudes and aptitudes we see associated with Leo degrees in any chart, and wherever we see Leo in the chart, that’s the area of life where we’re going to see much charm, much talent and much dynamism on display and being utilized, if intermittently at best -just like the lion on the veldt which sleeps the better part of its day, Leo degrees do require some down time.

And maybe for you, this ‘on/off’ or ‘work/relax’ rhythm is something you have learned about ...or something you need to learn about. Or maybe you’re been through a lot over these past months and are now determined to use your time or abilities more knowingly or effectively, that last term being one of the bugaboos on Leo’s list.

And why would ‘effectively’ be something Leo degrees (in particular) end up teaching us about?

Jupiter Direct (glyph chart)
April 8, 2015 - 16:58 (4:58 pm) UT/+0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Jupiter Direct (text chart)
April 8, 2015 - 16 58 (4 58 pm) UT +0 - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
That would be because Leo is the zodiac’s fixed fire sign, which means any (and every) Leo degree describes something which describes somewhere in our personality or habit patterns where we may well tend to get stuck on some personal, internal idea (image, vision) of how things should be, how they should work, or what they should look-sound-act like when they’re ‘right’ ... which is where Leo positives - the individual ability to see, create, adapt, conquer and protect meets up with the Aquarian themes of  accepting/rejection, hiring/firing, rewarding/costing, empowering against halting ... as those terms apply particularly to Leo’s desire to come up with, create or learn how to use/utilize whatever will conquer the challenge.

If that seems vague to you, think of it in simplistic real world terms: if you’re a parent, your job is not just to have the Leo fun and privilege of raising your children (which just for the ‘fun’ of it includes sleepless nights and various forms of grief, sass and teenage sulkery) ... but also to teach them enough about being a person that they are then able to survive and thrive in an impersonal Aquarian world. Or maybe you’re an inventor. Is your invention truly successful just because you’ve (Leo) invented it? Or is it successful only once it gets out there doing what its designed to do for (Aquarius) various people, individually and/or collectively?

Leo fails and falls down when and where we do not take both halves of this ‘equation’ into account. As we see with every sign, Leo has a ‘darker’ or ‘weaker’ side to its sign, which in Leo’s case is an arrogance which tends to manifest as either requiring that everyone see things your way ... or which, in failing to see how everyone else thinks or in terms of what is needed fails to fit in with the greater (Aquarian) system of life, operations, organization(s), etcetera.

Plus there’s always a touch of ‘clutch.’ All four fixed  signs have particular ‘habits’ when it comes to trying to hold things in place (which tends to be thought/spoken of as ‘holding things together’) - that’s the fixed nature. And in Leo, a fiery sign which like all three fire signs deals in inspiring visions, the thing they try to ‘hold’ onto (or keep intact) is their idea: the vision.

Wherever Leo appears in your chart, that’s the area of life where you will tend to ‘see’ things in terms of their potential: what they could be. This is no judgment on whether such a vision is right or wrong or useful versus useful - this is just about where such issues will tend to appear in your life (and unless the house cusp with Leo on it is 0 Leo, some of those Leo degrees fall in the prior house, a point many of us tend to forget!). To this we then add the degree of the station - 12 Leo - which, in being a degree between 10 and 19 (i.e., a degree in Leo’s second decanate) adds a note of fervency to the mix.

Or maybe you’d just prefer insistent. That could work too, as Leo’s ‘fixed’ quality combined with its power of ‘inner vision’ will tend to create moments where one side of the conversation is saying ‘this is the way - I KNOW this is the right way!’ while the other side of the conversation is saying things akin to ‘prove it,’ did you fall off of some turnip truck?’ and that statement that irritates so thoroughly in Leo situations, ‘you must be dreaming!’ (which is probably particularly irritating because it would seem to be accusing Leo energy of being Leo energy!).

And with this station occurring with Jupiter sextile the lunar North Node/trine its South Node while being (separately) in trine to an Aries conglomeration of Mercury, Uranus and Psyche there are going to be opinions and positions being expressed ... and worth expressing. After all, just because people don’t understand a (Leo-driven) vision/idea doesn’t mean it’s bad, wrong or otherwise unworkable.

However ... let’s be real: there’s a LOT of energy which is going to go into speaking one’s (Mercury-Psyche) mind simply for the (Uranus-Mercury) sake of speaking one’s mind. Jupiter is also on station for each and everyone, so while for some the ‘let’s look at what’s possible’ means something good, to others it’s going to mean something bad.

And let’s not forget - we’re talking about Jupiter here. So that would be very, very good - or possibly evil, awful and doomsday-ish.

Jupiter magnifies. And in this instance, it’s representing the energies in our life which are doing that magnifying or expanding of our reach, understanding, our capacity, our necessity - and even our need to know or learn better. Sometimes our Jupiter moments make us feel empowered ... and sometimes they come about through our feeling helpless or over-matched against something ‘so big’ or ‘so powerful’ or against which (or in the light of which) we are caused, made or inspired to pit ourselves - learning more about that Self in the process.

Sometimes we learn how powerful we are, and what we are truly capable of doing. And yet ... if Jupiter is known for any ill, it’s known for the sorry mess we create by overdoing, over-speaking, going overboard (literally or figuratively!) ... or otherwise feeling so driven to expand, make some move or jump to some conclusion, assumption or answer that we go right past the sensible and necessary, setting off such  avalanches of activity, input and reaction that we end up learning the boundaries we trampled in our Jupiter-themed haste to get out there and make things happen (for right or wrong) our way.

And let us not forget: this Jupiter station is occurring only a couple of days after a lunar eclipse (see previous post) ...which is another indication of our being all ‘stirred up’ with much about what is really changing in our lives, as represented by the 29 Pisces solar eclipse which occurred on March 20th.

Few of us are owning our real issues in public at the moment. But at this time, and as we move forward, we are going to be becoming more and more aware of what is (or has been) affected by matters and things which are affected by issues which mirror our eclipse. (You know, the eclipse which has exposed something about our Self to that Self which we don’t want to look at, never mind discuss with others?)

Yet life being life, it isn’t like we should expect that those ‘hidden’ things (which may be perfectly visible to others even though WE don’t want to see any part of it!) ... we should expect them - or at least aspects of that which they affect - to come up through whatever we do as we move ahead now.

That would be part of how Jupiter works ... not to mention rather typical of any planetary station. Some of the effects, of course, are dictated by how closely Jupiter’s 12 Leo ‘turnabout’ aspects your chart ...

... and of course there are differences in how each type of aspect functions. Sextiles, for instance, are often referred to as ‘options’ or ‘opportunities’ simply because these are things which come up in life which we may see and choose to walk by without another thought. They don’t necessarily represent good or bad, just the fact that there will be an opinion, and how we will that time make some choice even if that choice is to simply say ‘no’ and walk on by.

Against that, conjunctions tend to be so immediate that we don’t even have time or enough ‘space’ (mental or otherwise) to think through or get perspective on things. And sometimes we don’t want to! 

After all, why spoil the wonderful day or good time with all sorts of carefully dried and dusted analysis?

More to the point, conjunctions represent times when something is what we’re ‘about’ at the moment - as opposed to squares, which in testing our sense of proportion often cause us to wish we could be anywhere but where we are in the moment of our given struggle. Where conjunctions ask us who we are, who we are being and what we are doing (or going to do/not do, be or not be) while asking us to keep our heads on and not overstep our Self (or sensible boundaries), squares challenge us to keep things in balance, generally calling for a focus on methods and nuances of balance which are inconvenient and sometimes uncertainty-provoking at their best.

The general ‘rule’ with squares is that we will tend to favor one thing or one approach, and it’s that very favoring of one thing (the being imbalanced in our approach) which ends up defeating us - which differs from oppositions.

How so? Well, in spite of the common cries of square-haters (there are a lot of them), squares do have some benefits, one being how squares give us ‘wiggle room’ (and often a chance to ‘re-balance’ and save our day (because that's how we learn to master 'squared' dynamics), oppositions ‘confront’ us with things which (generally) are impossible to escape without at least admitting their existence - which is often just what we've been doing which prompts the opposition and/or confrontation (however you want to think about it).

Trines, on the other hand, are a bit more like conjunctions ... and oppositions ... in how they tend to feel ‘inevitable,’ though the trine - an energetic about things 'in process most often refers to coming into (or to) a situation with something already under way. And that ‘ongoing status quo’ tends not to change with a trine ... although since Jupiter is 'taking a turn,' so may what comes (or becomes) of said process under way.

And that’s something worth thinking about when we’re talking about Jupiter stations. For the past few months (since early December, when Jupiter went retrograde) growth - growth of the good as well as growth of the problematic - has been greatly internal or internalized. In other words, on the metaphysical level, whatever happened during this time will have affected us internally, and either in the Leo 'parts' of our life or through Leo sorts of means - all of which would have begun back at the December 2014 Jupiter station.

You know, when it went into retrograde.

And now, as Jupiter goes direct, most of our reasons for doing what we do will come from external sources. We’ll listen more ... and (yes,) we’ll talk more, even if that means we’re talking about the strikingly obvious need to listen - which sounds funny, but isn’t all that unlikely, particularly around the time of Jupiter’s station as Jupiter is going through its station while in sextile to the North Node - sounding the horn about some sextile ‘opportunity’ which we (North Node in Libra) should do or consider with regards to others or in terms of others, but which we’re not likely to be all that enthusiastic about. As with all nodal indications, the ‘should’ (North Node) asks us to bite the bullet and do all those uncomfortable things like not ‘going along to get along’ (as the old expression goes).

A North Node in Libra asks us to do the unpopular but correct thing - which being that this North Node is being affected by ongoing (trine) energy of a mental and singularly Self-revealing kind represents a time when we recognize our abilities - or confront our Self - through an expanding list of ideas which may be different and valuable, different merely for the sake of being different, or reactionary for any of a number of informational reasons. What this is likely to mean in real time and your everyday life depends on where Jupiter is in your chart natally ... and where it’s station falls.

But wherever it falls, that’s where you will learn something about yourself during these days. The issue is not what others think, and its not about making our Self ‘feel better’ about who we are or aren’t. Rather it’s about understanding our potential and where we tend not to understand or believe in that Self.

And why ... or maybe more to the point, why we are ‘stuck’ in whatever less-than-wonderful patterns or habits we’re stuck in. 

In keeping with Jupiter’s Leo station, its highly likely that we’ve taken some want and made it into a need.

And then we add in the idea of that ‘easiest thing to do’ (or the preferred thing to do) - that South Node in Aries - is in a grand trine with Saturn/Moon in Sagittarius and Juno in Leo. On one hand that points to some who may have abstracted needs, turning them into the celebration of some abstract idea instead of dealing with something which in reality is really broken, delaying all chances to fix anything until the defensiveness behind the desire (emotional need) to abstract - a desire which centers not in others or the world but in what we are or aren’t  willing to learn about our Self gets resolved.

If it gets resolved, that is.

Of course there are those who will come into this Jupiter station with some sort of accomplishment or grand opportunity in the works. Their challenges going forward are really no different than the person who comes into this time feeling like things are totally awry.

But they will probably have learned one very important lesson - that being about the kind of Self-discipline which is really about what kind of Self we choose to be.

Currently transiting Leo, Juno will catch up to and conjunct Jupiter during the period of May 14-18, and at that time it is entirely likely that there will be a shifting or recalibrating of personal dynamics and approaches in light of all which happens now.

As for the rest of life, with Jupiter going direct we are embarking on just over nine months of exploration, education and growth as Jupiter won’t be going back into retrograde mode until January 2016. Some of what we end up doing during that time will be a natural process of building on what we’ve already accomplished or worked out how to do - and some of it will be our capitalizing on what we learned about our Self while Jupiter was in retrograde. In returning to the degree it went retrograde in last December as of July 6th, Jupiter will complete its 2014-2015 cycle and metaphysically move us all into a new period of growth - but until July, we’re all still working on projects, efforts and (whether we know it or not) lessons about who we are and aren’t, who we should be - and never even think about being.

One more note here: as discussed Jupiter stations are astrologically famous for things we love to think are good, but which in reality are not just an ‘overstep’ but detrimental to our truest aims, goals and truths. Because of the eclipses (which is to say, the proximity of Jupiter’s station to those eclipses) even as a lot of good gets done, a lot of problems may well be being incited precisely because we’re feeling sort of ‘golden,' and we're taking more risks at the moment - some of which go over some line which ordinarily we would be sober-of-perspective enough to recognize the danger(s) of.

Part of what goes wrong now has to do with everyone (that’s the BIG everyone!) is emotionally sensitized at the moment - not just because of the lunar eclipse, but because of something far bigger and far more ugly: our desire not to be (or get) caught up in the inevitable disgorging of ills ... in this case, self-denied if long-harbored ills ... which are now being raised as part of the recent eclipse, and which are going to continue oozing out like some particularly distasteful infection.

Our feelings got us into whatever is wrong here. And it's to remember: we don’t WANT to know the part of all these ills which aren't holding on to or quite possibly in favor of - even though we are - that being one of the most essential parts of our Jovian, learning life.

Jupiter - among other things - is the primary or "in door" ruler of Pisces. In that role, Jupiter opens the door for us to learn, but not about 'things.' No, in Pisces Jupiter represents our emotional lessons - and those lessons we need to learn ... truly for our own good ... about who we are in spite of the fact we have been hoping we were something different.

And yes, usually something or someone better. Wherever we see a connection between Jupiter and Pisces playing out on the metaphysical field, we have to conclude that life is attempting to teach us about the difference between who we would like to think we are - and who we're really being. Where we think we know more about life or our Self than we actually do, Jupiter represents that tendency we will have at such Jupiter/Pisces times (as we're going through now, seeing as we've just had a 29 Pisces solar eclipse) to become involved in - usually quite knowingly - something where we go in thinking we're just fine and where we come out knowing we've been living in our own little emotional pond, either without sufficient information to inform our Self about who we are (or are acting like) - or without having taken into account who others are and how they feel.

And yet ... as bad as such moments may feel, the truth is they're also part of our Jupiter education, an education which will always end up teaching us not just those things we want to learn, but how we need to learn many things we don't especially like as only by seeing errors can we ever hope to correct them ... and how that breadth of understanding - the understanding of light and dark as two edges of a single sword - is an indispensable part of all intrinsic ... and human ... life processes.