by Boots Hart, CAP

Friday, August 30, 2013

Happy Birthday Mary Shelley

 Theodore Von Holst's frontispiece to the 1831 edition
 of Mary Shelley's classic tale, 'Frankenstein' as published
by Colburn & Bentley (London)

'Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus' is without question, Mary Shelley's most famous contribution to literature.

As a writer, I was particularly interested to learn something about her life as I wrote the following blog post looking at that life from the astrological perspective.

Mary is, of course, no longer with us. But as today would have been her birthday, let's all give her a Frankenstein-worthy groan.

Wherever she is, maybe she'll laugh...!


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Pholus-Ixion on Station

A detail from Angelo Bronzino's painting of Venus, Cupid, Folly and Time 
(Angelo Bronzino: 1503-1572)
No sooner will we have moved through…(or into, rather)…our own personal 'deep water' courtesy of Sedna's station and the evolving evolutionary potentials of a series of continuing on-off grand sextiles but Pholus and Ixion will go on station mode and turn direct.

Both of them?

Yes, both of them. Pholus goes direct on September 1st and Ixion goes direct on September 2nd.

Not only that, but they’re both going direct at 18 Sagittarius, which given the unity of expression here seems the place to start thinking this through.

18 Sagittarius, by simplest definition is several things. The Sagittarian question has to do with finding our way and seeing if or how or how well our concepts of how life works or how we’re going to reach our goals work. Sagittarius being a fire sign, there is an element of ‘the vision’ which given Sedna’s recent turn to retrograde may well point to our discovering…or coping with the realization that old ways of thinking, old goals, old ‘definitions’ of what’s right (or right for us) are in flux. Or in need of a change.

The fact that eighteen as a degree of any sign indicates areas where that sign manifests emotionally, in Sagittarius we may well encounter moments of excitement, fervent debate, frenetic thinking or feeling like our world is in a whirl and there’s just too much coming at us.


Dane Rudhyar gives us the keyword of ‘Survival’ for this degree and speaks to how pelicans are known to sacrifice themselves to feed their own young. But what are our ‘young’? For some, the meaning is probably literal – you have children and those kids are your ‘young’ (or young ‘uns, depending). But since astrology is universal and not everyone has children, the concept here has to be broader than just that literal interpretation.

The clue is probably found in the polarity – the fact that Sagittarius is where we find out whether our Gemini thinking, those Gemini choices and our Gemini path/method of building our life is solid. Will it stand up under scrutiny? Do our presumptions or theories about life – or how our life should work function as well as we thought they would when put into real life ‘application’ sort of situations?

Having come this far in thinking through 18 Sagittarius, this last concept rather brings in what Pholus and Ixion going retrograde may actually point at. Pholus being an astronomical centaur, the metaphysical essence is about an ‘argument’ (if you will) or test of will between our headstrong nature and our intelligence…our willingness to think things through at a productive level rather than just to go with our assumptions.

In the myth, centaur Pholus is friends with Heracles – that hero of great strengths and resourcefulness we of modern day ilk generally know as Hercules. Considering this friendship, it’s safe to say that Pholus and Hercules had things in common. And since weaponry becomes a focus in the story, one would assume that strength, assertion…even aggression are one of those traits.

The turning point in this tale comes when Hercules is called to do something noble and instead of joining him in his ‘noble effort,’ Pholus chooses to remain in his cave…which in Sagittarius is most likely to be ‘sticking to our perspective on how we think things work,’ or how we want them to work, or wanting to do things our own way.

And while sitting in his cave, Pholus spots an arrow which Hercules left behind.

 Pholus' orbit at September 1, 2013. With Pholus currently headed away from
the solar system's 'central district' we may be more likely to damage that which
might benefit us going forward by refusing to see where we are coming
from than otherwise
(image courtesy of JPL's Small Object Database)

Arrows are obviously weapons. And when we think through all the lore about arrows, they seem to be all about ‘piercing us to the heart’ – whether that’s on the theoretically positive side (as with Cupid) where love ‘stabs us to the heart’ or whether ‘death’ is dealt (in Sagittarius to some plan, some idea, some belief or some previously committed to course of action) – this is what Pholus found himself staring at.

And then he makes his mistake. In picking up the arrow, he gets careless and cuts himself on the arrow’s poisonous edge.

And yes, he dies.

So here’s the question: in whatever arises now, is clinging to our belief or idea or plan the mirror of how we are being ‘careless’ with our life? In sticking to our ‘rules’ are we ‘cutting’ ourselves short - or out of something which would enhance our world beyond knowing? Or is making a change the act of being careless to the ‘point’ what we poison what we’ve already built or committed to?

Or maybe we're just being the 'stickler' in the pack who refuses to go along with what we know full well is futile folly?

What's right?

It’s hard to know. And given the nature of astrology, it could be a little bit of the 'do' and a little bit of the 'undo' (aka 'self undoing') all at once. So much of life cuts both ways! In gaining, we often lose - at least our ignorance.

But then, you know what they say about 'ignorance is bliss,' right?

And there is that fact that what we think we want is so often not what we really want. I have known many people who walked away from everyone only because they wanted to be treated decently by anyone.

So which is which? That's the question.

One of our answers comes from the gross disparity between the mythic characters Ixion and Pholus and the rest of the world in their stories. Pholus was a centaur living in a world populated mostly by humans (give or take the occasional Olympian god). And Ixion was born to be the king of his realm.

Both of these stories are at some level about the 'isolation' from the mainstream. They're either about not wanting to have to consider what others think or what's important to them (Ixion) and the other is about choosing to go your own way (Pholus). 

And yet...when we think of myths, what we're thinking of is an aspect of our character. So Ixion and Pholus refer to some nuance, some urge, something which dares us to flaunt not necessarily society's standards (this being Ixion we're referencing) but our own. In the case of Pholus, are we willing to be careless with ourselves simply because it's 'easy enough to do'?

The tightest planetary aspect to this (double) station is Mercury. During the days of this transit (taking into account the full station windows) Mercury will move from 12 Virgo through 21 Virgo…which again alludes to the overall Virgo nature of this time and seems to point at the ‘health’ or ‘wellbeing’ of our life, our way of thinking and – given that both Pholus and Ixion are nothing if not about our internal imperatives – our mentality. In starting at 12 and ending at 21 the Mercury hint would seem to be that our feelings – and how they apply to our choices and where we stand with others – is part of this current process.

And let’s not forget – Pholus and Ixion are turning direct. So this is about what we are going to DO…and also about how others react to us or prompt us or how they view who we are being.

No, this isn’t a picnic, though it doesn't have to be anything major. (It could be, but it doesn't have to be!). Like as not, we'll be feeling confused and be falling back on our habits and not stopping to consider what we could do which would be constructive if we would just get our of our own pig-headed way.

And why wouldn't we get out of our own pig-headed way?

Let's just say that's likely to be an Ixion challenge. You may well know by now that the story of Ixion is another one of those myths which really grabbed my inner psyche. (Nothing like knowing what gets to your astrologer, right?) Astronomically, Ixion isn't big enough to qualify as a dwarf planet. But it is a Plutin - and that means that Ixion's orbit…and thus our ‘Ixion thinking’…is governed by Neptune.

And that would be where the delusions and the problems and the odd thinking begins. Pluto is governed by Neptune too…and if you’re into astrology you know what trouble your tendency to obsess over, about and through the lens of your Plutonic focus can get you into.

There is however, a pretty big difference between Pluto and Ixion in terms of meanings. Pluto is the idea of ‘dying to ourselves’ (or our egos) so that we can be reborn transformed and purified of whatever toxic ways we have become muddied by. Wherever you see Pluto in your chart, all the things and functions and people which are connected to that sign and horoscope house will be where and how and through what you will experience this Plutonic force, for both good and ill, for all the difficulties and blessings which may befall you…or become the means through which you will become blessed.

Or yes, plagued by your inability to change – or at least transform negatives into positives.

I’ll give you an example. My personal Pluto is in the 5th house and about as close to perfectly trined to my Ascendant as possible, which is a good lesson in the idea of “the closer the aspect, the more powerful the effect.” The 5th house is the house of children, creativity, our initiative/initiating power in the area of socializing-societal doings, dating, performance-competing-ego-as-motivator and how our own childhood affects all these areas of life.

To be brief about the background stuff, I was pretty lucky to have survived my childhood and teen years for a variety of reasons we don’t need to discuss here. So I have all the negatives which might go with that 5th house list…and the Plutonic need to do something with all that sublimated energy.

For me, that became the heart of my creative motivation, my desire to help others who also may have stumbled and to make a contribution to this world in the hopes that things will be better for others. And's also all about my endless need to learn from people about how their lives work as a way to fill in the things I never learned growing up. (To be my friend is to live with an endless series of questions about what you think about things in life...and in your life...which those determined to live in denial simple dislike to the max!)

I’m also Plutonic in that my mentality is amorphous enough to take on – or take in – the perspective or energy of others and through that ‘become them’ enough to understand them. It can be good, it can be bad…trust me. It's a big plus in writing and a big minus when I'm trying to keep the thee-versus-me sense of life in well-defined personal order. (And yes, my friends do tend to be the philosophical and self-examining types!)

Every chart contains every point. Pluto as the symbol of 'create, deny, destroy' operates in all three modes in each and every person's chart. We aren't 'better' for ignoring our hurts (or denying their effects on us or our world) just as we aren't any better for hiding in those hurts without understanding how they motivate us for better...and yes, sometimes as part of self-damaging, self-limiting and utterly toxic choices.

Of course we can change. That's the Plutonic point...that life is about evolution and the process of evolving.

So in taking that lesson to Ixion, it occurred to me that Ixion may function differently than Pluto because Ixion isn’t a planet – dwarf or otherwise. Yet, Ixion has that same sort of 'allure' (Neptune) quotient which Pluto has. Ixion manifests in our life as areas or habits or choices which we keep going with even though they consistently don't work...or they create a 'shell of self' which we live so totally within that we are never on a par with others and thus able to recognize and accept our own humanity.

The glory, the foibles, the longings, the desires, the hurts and is our calling to become aware of what and who we are and - ultimately - to become aware that all is a gift and all is meant to empower our connections to our world, within our psyches and with the searching souls of others.

Ixion is currently moving towards us from the outer reaches of its orbit,
speaking to an ongoing tendency to create our own problems individually
and collectively.
(Image courtesy of JPL's Small Object Database)

But goodness's not easy. That we can see by how poignantly painful the tale of Ixion truly is...and how since we all have Ixion in our chart, we are all going to manifest Ixion resistance in some way. As with Pluto, wherever your Ixion is, that’s where you will tend to repeatedly ‘burn yourself’ until you learn to be grateful and (yes) careful with that which life offers you.

But once we learn to be grateful, then the burn becomes a whole different thing. I have a friend who 'burns' with shame for something they did a long time ago. That recognition of what they did has motivated them to change and become an entirely different person.

Many of us go through such 'life conversions' which can be traced to Ixion placements and transits by Ixion or to our natal Ixion. The tricky part comes when the conversion is made...when we try to forgive ourselves while retaining the sense of learned gratitude.

Wherever your Ixion is in your chart, the ruler of the sign it's in, the ruler of the house Ixion is positioned in and any and all aspects to Ixion will give you the pro-and-con of this process. Like many, my friend has come to fear the depth of their own feelings - not understanding that the iron hand of fearing those feelings is their own emotionality.

And thus Ixion's lesson repeats. It is no better for this person to not care about the love their humanity craves than it is to have treated anyone else badly.

Hopefully they'll figure it out. When we can convert Ixion into the gratitude that we have another chance and use the pain behind our mistakes to fuel the self-discipline which holds us to the quality of what we do and those we choose to do it with - then we win. Then Ixion becomes the means by which we can like a Phoenix, be reborn to ourselves and those around us forevermore, on an ongoing basis.

Considering how Ixion (like Pluto) takes 240-plus years to go once around the zodiac, Ixion is another form of ‘generational influence’ and not (probably) of the very best kind.

When Pluto was in Cancer (1914-1938) Ixion was in Virgo, moving into Libra as of 1935. Then, for the full and very long period that Pluto traversed Leo (1939-1957, the Baby Boomer generation)…and on into Pluto in Virgo (the Yuppies: 1957-1972) Ixion was in Libra – the signature of difficulties with the ability or even the willingness to really connect with others…and attribute which ends up ‘burning’ all of these folks through relationship connections.

But not all of the Yuppies got Ixion in Libra, as Ixion moved into Scorpio in 1967. And seeing as Ixion didn’t move on into Sagittarius until 1997, that means that the end of the Yuppies, ALL of Gen X and ALL of Pluto in Scorpio (a tough generation to belong to anyway) are colored by Ixion in Scorpio’s tendency to get ‘burned’ through the willingness to be intimate…and the resistance to intimacy.

With Ixion, you just can’t win – at least not starting out. The Ixion cycle seems to be all about getting burned and at long, long last learning how to be not as self willed about “designing” how life runs. It’s about not setting up your own set of rules to live by which given Ixion’s current transit of Sagittarius means we are all being confronted by the need to be who we are while working with the world around us.

The balance would seem to be the question. And here, as Pholus and Ixion go direct at the same time on the last days before the ‘breaking down’ period in advance of this November’s Scorpio Solar Eclipse begins…well, that tends to say that a lot about a lot of things is getting stirred up in our lives.

In our psyches.

In our relationships.

In our ability to keep doing whatever we’re doing and pursue our chosen path.

Lore on 18 Sagittarius speaks of the tendency to ‘reject’ in such a way which hurts us because in rejecting we are getting farther out of balance – not with others, but with ourselves. The ‘solution’ here speaks to ‘natural things’ – which may be the ‘nature’ of the world, the ‘nature’ in our world, or that which is ‘natural’ to have in one’s life.

Whichever side of the balance you come into this dual station on…too much, too little, too much ‘out there,’ too much ‘in here’…whether you’re exercising more of the Pholus ‘caving’ instinct or the Ixion ‘if I want it I’ll take it’ sort of habit, that’s what is now likely to get challenged. Or evoked. Or provoked. Or poked and prodded until you pay attention not just to the painfulness of it all, but the part you play in not rebalancing your life, which by any other name is the mentally and emotionally ‘healthy’ (Mercury in Virgo) thing to do.

This is, without question, a curious and powerful time. The whole of this year has been littered with signs and signals that life is changing…our lives are changing. And that isn’t just the ‘outsides.’ Who we are is undergoing an inexorable metamorphosis which we can only harm our eventualities by resisting.

Ixion goes direct on September 2nd, making August 31st through September 4th (UT/+0) the focus of Ixion shifts. Shifts which bring about discomfort of various types would be typical of this time both on the giving and receiving end.

Meanwhile, with Pholus will go direct on September 1st (UT/+0) means that the Pholus effects start on the 30th and extend through September 3rd.

What this means on an overall basis is that however these two stations manifest in our lives, they are doing so in part as a bridge between the ‘shifting’ grand sextile of August 29 and the onset of the shuddering of our lives which precedes any solar eclipse.

The Grand Sextile of August 29, 2013
And that should be a clue about what is yet about to happen. Solar eclipses aren’t gentle, yet they are ultimately a primal shaper in a life where many of us seek to ‘make do’ and go for ‘good enough’ rather than to be the person we know deep inside we have the capacity to be…that person we know we should be even if we will be required to give up everything which we have temporized with in the process.

Going back even beyond the grand sextile, Sedna’s turn to retrograde on August 25 is another form of being asked to ‘let go.’ With Sedna, the things we need to let go of are images and  assumptions about ‘what we need to be’ in the finding of our true internal power.

Between that need and the celestial linking of eventualities which is the grand sextile and now Pholus and Ixion going direct as the opening which leads us into the evolutionary force which is this November’s Scorpio Solar Eclipse? And that said Solar Eclipse is itself a climax, an accumulation, a reflection and transition into a process of reward or loss transition seeded last February when Saturn went retrograde at 11 Scorpio….


Our need to grow is great. Our need to be realistic about our choices and not to be so headstrong that we harm our own better interests is being evoked.

What to do about it all?

That’s our choice, a challenging choice which asks us to see what ‘good for me’ means in a whole new and different – more balanced - light.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Mars in Leo - Hidalgo and Arachne Direct

Frontispiece from 'An Argosy of Fables' (c 1921, P Bransom, illustrator)

In the wake of Sedna’s station as the Grand Sextile moves towards formulation, Mars enters Leo.

The date? August 28th, with Mars entering Leo at 2:06 in the morning, UT/+0 time.

As this happens, Hidalgo will also be stationing and going direct – as is its fellow space traveler, Arachne.

A symbol of ‘manners,’ mannerisms, Hidalgo refers to the manner in which we do something and the manner in which we should do something (protocols). The degree of Hidalgo’s station being 16 Sagittarius, we are all likely to be influenced by whatever it is which evokes our love of pleasure. Curious however is the fact that 16 Sagittarius is also associated with eruptions of the skin, infections and problems breathing – all of which may be thought of as being connected to (or a manifestation of) inner discomforts. Considering how this station coincides with Mars energizing the strong Leo desire to exercise our wants, desires and aims, the combination may point to anything from a simple irritation with whatever may be interrupting us to a feeling of being totally overwhelmed (drowned) by the totality of life.

That Hidalgo is going direct with Pandora just behind and Pholus plus Ixion just ahead does seem to indicate that we know there’s choppy water – or at least a lot of effort – which needs investing at some level if we’re to make things work the way we want them to, or see them move in the direction which will assist us in reaching our goals.

You know, the Sagittarian mantra.

There's also the fact that Hidalgo is a centaur - not a main belt asteroid. Cycling from just beyond the orbit of Saturn past Jupiter into the depths of the asteroid belt, Hidalgo speaks to all those things which originate beyond our (Saturn) grasp which in confronting and learning about them, we learn to manage - though we'll never quite control them.

And let's face it, control is a major human issue. So with Hidalgo in Sagittarius (a sign all about learning what works, which of our ideas need refining before they can work and what we need to learn along the way to our personal goals), much is likely to be churning through our days, our minds, our emotional psyches.

Currently just crossing into the metaphysical realm of our 'Reality' (as symbolized by Saturn), nothing about Hidalgo's effects are likely to be - or feel all that 'ordinary.' That we know from Hidalgo's inclination - which is to say, our inclination about "Hidalgo Factors."

Given the high inclination (how Hidalgo doesn't travel on the same plane as most of our planetary solar system) Hidalgo is either something we feel is 'imposed' on us or something which comes from 'off the beaten path' which we need to incorporate with our methodology (i.e., our 'life protocol'). It can be either - or both.

Plus, let us not forget the metaphysical concept of centaurs as a class. The mythic centaur is a beast which joins the upper half of a man to the powerful body of a horse. These two pieces are joined at the horse's heart and the human genitals, a combination which plainly asks us whether we will...or even can 'rise above' our pure animal instinct to a place where we can insist that we use our greatest (animal) strength to serve the greater thoughtful purposes life would ask of us - both for life's sake, and for our sake, too.

With Mars ingressing Leo trailed by Tantalus and fronted by Scheherazade and Sphinx suggests that there’s a ways to go before we can become that living legend in our own eyes. But we do truly and sincerely want our (Leo) vision to be – or become our truth.

The fact that the Moon is in early Gemini as this pair of events takes place is also interesting, as Moon in Gemini always indicates some degree of personal investment on the mental plane. Given that the Grand Sextile will be in effect rather fleetingly (but importantly) very early on August 29 (UT/+0) this means the effects of the Grand Sextile, though positioned in earth and water, will formulate mentally…and inspire us to see a more powerful, more (Sedna) authentic road which may yet be followed through our life.

Into which comes the Hidalgo-Arachne issue of whether we are too caught up in some manner of being or some external protocol to heed either the warning or invitation offered us by life…events…karma…fate….time.

Even for those who will follow the invisible light of faith, achieving those ends will take planning, effort and surrendering to our vulnerabilities to get there – a concept which Mars in Leo may or may not be in sync with, depending on your natal Mars and where Leo falls in your chart. In the most general sense, what we could expect here is a pretty clear split between those who will tend to scoff and those willing to recognize truths which require that they put their ‘big boy’ (or girl) pants on and get to work.

The Grand Sextile is a call for us to internalize the idea that life is not the idea of living, but the event, the experiencing of it, the taking the heartfelt risk if you know deep down in the noodles of your soul that you really need to change, know or embrace something new.

Maybe even somebody new – who knows!

Because the Moon represents our ‘everyday life,’ the fact that it will be in Gemini as Mars moves into Leo denotes a general sense of ‘knowing what I’m doing’ – into which comes the enormous funneling of energy governed by the linking of then and now, heaven and earth, conscious and subconscious, actions and fate. Given the accompanying elements attending the Mars/Leo ingress, we are all likely to be focused (at some level) on something we feel is ‘inadequate’ in ourselves…or maybe just in life. And we’ll be doing our best to cope, putting a shiny (Scheherazade) face on things despite our (Sphinx) quandaries and the fervent (Tantalus) wish that we didn’t have to deal with any of it.

Oh shades of Sedna’s station…! The echoes of our expectations will so ring loudly through the cosmos.

And more importantly, through our consciousness. But are they ours? Are those ideas really what we think and feel about ourselves? Or do they come from some ‘when’ which is not now?

What is really important?

Hidalgo’s station will begin on August 26, come to full focus on the 28th (as it goes direct) and continue through the 30th. As with all stations, its to our advantage to pay attention to any event or moment which embraces or evidences the ‘meaningful motion’ – or lack of same…the being paused by focus…which occurs.

Remember it. Pin it to your mental bulletin board for further reflection.

Another concepts with regards to stations in general which bears remembering now: events which occur during the ‘station window’ but prior to the station generally refer not to things ‘changing directions’ in your life, in your regard, in your opinion, but will also evidence as time goes on.

Like the windows pictured here, astrological influences come in a myriad of shapes
and sizes and can bring a refreshing breath of air, chilling cold or blistering conditions to our lives.
Every time there's an astrological station, transit or eclipse,
we each face the choice of whether we will open the window and risk a moment
of shock for the chance that our souls will be fanned by the balm of warmth and
caring - or not. Far too many of us, I suspect, have our windows locked
with the latches painted over.  
(Image credit: Windows by Tourre)

In other words, the event prior to station exactness is about something which hasn’t yet happened – at least not in concrete fullness. Against this, the thing which happens or occurs to you after the moment of the station but within the ‘station window’ are by and large a ‘playing out’ of events or situations which have already occurred.

These effects are subtle, but very and entirely real. Either way, the effect is traceable: for those of you who are astrologers or into astrology (yes, I know you’re out there and I’m complimented by your taking time to read this blog)…grab your natal chart (preferably a detailed version of same) and start by looking at the symbols or aspects being struck at the time of your “current event.” Then look back or forward through planetary movements to see when some other body will hit these points. The larger the event, the more significant the transit.

With that recipe duly dictated, on to Arachne. Among the thousands of main belt asteroid (representing things we encounter along the way to mastery and achievement), Arachne is going direct at 12 Sagittarius at 9:50 p.m. on August 2th (timed for the UT/+0 zone). The degree 12 Sagittarius is a highly energetic degree which rife with passion of all types – sexual and otherwise. Such energy may be used directly (in a straightforward manner), used as an ‘infusion’ in the healing of others or even converted into insight or far-seeing visions...good or bad.

An 'Arachnecized' soul from Dante's Purgatorio (Canto 12)
as envisioned by master illustrator Gustave Dore (1832-1883)
Since we are talking about Arachne, it is to be expected that (depending on where 16 Sagittarius falls in your natal and current solar chart) you may be, or get ‘caught up’ in one or another form of this energy and find it difficult to make a shift in the way your moment-to-moment life requires.

In going direct on the 28th, Arachne also has a station allowance which begins on August 26th and which then extends through August 30st.

And since both stations extend beyond the moment of the Grand Sextile, look for a change of situational dynamics and personal outlook as the spiritual linkage ends.

I know full well we each have our own orientation to how life works and what’s worth taking our time to witness. People go out to watch eclipses, to watch alignments.

Personally, my deepest respect goes to the Grand Sextile, the image of the Hermetic statement ‘as above, so below.’

But maybe that’s just because of how my life is shaped.

We each need to follow our uniquely personal path. We are not ‘like’ one another – we’re not meant to be ‘like’ anyone else. Our friends, associates, lovers and dearly loved ones are not those who always agree with us, they are those whom we can love for their humanity. For their willingness to share. We love them for being there…we love them for giving us space enough in which to operate on our own, as our own person.

Mars in Leo is at its heart about the inspiration to be more tomorrow than we are on any given day. To have that drive, to see someone else struggling with their mortality and their potential is inspiring. We all have lives filled with details and histories which seem to warp us so tantalizingly (in the Tantalus manner), which wrap and bind us in Arachne-like silken threads.

Mars in Leo is one of those forces which allows us to see beyond the simplistic. All things happen for a reason is not just a slogan.

It’s a reality. And for the next seven-plus weeks while Mars continues its transit of Leo, we have an opportunity to see through life’s veneers to the level where we are each capable of informing ourselves on a hugely powerful level about why that which may have been so difficult, painful or seemingly detrimental is the gift which allows us to elevate ourselves from a level of life where we live for mundane pleasure to a place where we are able to be fused and fueled by those truly great motivations which allow us to become the gift to ourselves and everyone else in life.

For more information on the Grand Sextile of August 29th,
please refer to the previous post on Sedna’s station


Friday, August 23, 2013

Sedna's Station as Grand Sextile Herald

'Hand of adult and child' - an image Sedna challenges us
to think of as being both our Self
(photo credit: Israel free image project, c 1970-1980)

With the Sun entering Virgo on August 22nd and Mercury following in on August 23rd (both in the UT/+0 zone) we’re all officially in a zone all about ‘improvements.’ Life will be filled with questions. All the 'should's and 'would's of life will ask us what we want to do...and how to best get at what really needs doing.

This is likely to be a time when we'll all be considering our priorities and the ramifications of acting against the possible cost of standing still. We'll at least need to contend with our urges to be lackadaisical and make excuses...often to others, but really to our Self.

It's a period filled with plus and minuses and sorting out the difference between responsibility and obligation, between morality and guilt, between accomplishment and avoidance.

In the midst of all, we're likely to see how sometimes it’s not the ‘thing’ which counts, its being satisfied with what you’ve done, how well you’ve done it and why you chosen to follow your path.

What does what you're currently doing with your life really mean?

All of this sets the stage as dwarf planet Sedna turns to retrograde at 6:03 in the morning (UT/+0) of August 25th, a moment which finds Mercury and Orcus conjunct the Sun, making Sedna’s turn a focus on the consequence of what we are...or aren't. What we're willing to do, and how for many of us we are where we are in this world right now not because we planned it that way but rather because we've followed suggestions and images supplied by others.

Or even by society.

Sedna was discovered in November of 2003 at California’s Mount Palomar Observatory by the team of Craig Trujillo, David Rabinowitz and Caltech’s Mike Brown - who if you read this blog you know I think of as a rock star astronomer, not to mention a trés cool guy kind enough to answer this astrologer’s astrophysics questions when she stubs her mental toe. And considering it's only been a decade of knowing Sedna, much research remains to be done on both the astrological ond astronomical side.

But from what we understand so far, Sedna functions in the chart rather like the psychological concept of ‘superego’ does.

(And no, your superego is not where you dress up in a mask and cape and go save the world. Nice thought, but unfortunately that’s not the gig.)
So what IS a superego? Putting it in simple terms our superego is a set of standards or images instilled in our mind which either guides us - or which we rebel against. For some, superego concepts provide them with security. For others, superego energies feel like an eternal, subtle, constant critique. Most often our superegos somehow 'imbed' something about what our parents said. You they said life would be. Or should be. The marked tendency for so many of us to grow up 'just like our parents' and indeed grow to be more and more like them as time goes along - that's the power of the superego.

But it isn't our parents. Nor are we supposed to be what the media or popular culture "says we should be." Often our superego images are merely just how we interpret external messages - and there is nothing cut and dried about this. Some of us will resist and end up destroying ourselves, some of us will comply with perceived 'instructions' and bury our dearest wishes, some of us will be made insecure by getting as far as knowing we aren't 'like' those images being thrown at us but without any idea of who we really are. Or if it's okay to be that unique and perhaps highly counter-cultural person. 

Just because you can't fulfill someone else's expectations doesn't mean you're a failure. That's part of the Sedna lesson. Thus whatever our early experiences are, there comes a time when we ask ourselves whether we should question those images, those expectations, the feeling that we should 'comply' or 'fit in' when that's really not who we are.

Whatever your situation is - whether you need to rethink or you need to change things, or even if you need to not insist of your children that they 'toe the line' because you did when you were young, the issue is individuation.

Sedna asks that we take a step back. Sedna is about gaining perspective - on who we are, on what we think life is, on what we truly believe our personal potentials may yet come to be if we allow ourselves to grow, perhaps purged of old assumptions which may or may not have been true or still be true.

That process, and whether we undertake the challenge of comprehending and accepting or reworking our imprinting is what we know of currently as the astrological Sedna Process.

As usual, there’s an interesting myth which goes with Sedna. If you’d like to read how that sorts out astrologically, here is a LINK to a piece on same here at the blog.

Most of us want to think that Sedna ‘individuation’ is just about learning to live on our own (the physical separation from our parents). But that's just where the work - and the possibility for real personal power - begins. Separating from feelings and ‘images’ left over from early hopes and dreams is what frees our psyche to be our psyche and function from the perspective of who we really are.

Maybe you have a little Sedna work to do...and maybe you have a lot. Whatever your Sedna Process is, it will swell up like cold water seeking to engulf you from below...from Sedna goes in and out of retrograde.

The good news is that Sedna works on us slowly; we generally experience its energy in ‘steps’ and ‘stages.’ At every ‘parting’ we feel freer and yet are confronted by the need to be invested ever more tangibly in who we are.

What we want to be.

Where we want to be being who we are.

Once we begin ‘owning’ our Sedna, we know things are changing because we know they need to change. And often it's as simple as that. Individuality as part of the Sedna Process is experienced as ‘sinking’ ever more deeply into our ‘sea’ of existence and personal potential. In the Sedna myth, Sedna is finally wrested from a life she was determined to cling to by an ocean storm - a 'storm of emotionality,' we would say metaphysically. And once her grip on all she knows is broken down, she is tossed into a surging ocean (of her own feelings) and there she sinks into the ocean's depths.

The depths of her emotional psyche, this would be. And there, alone in the dark and drowned to all save her soul she finds that power and purpose which allows Sedna to become a goddess - the Being we can be because we are each and every one of us born with unique human gifts.

In Sedna, we accept the singular qualities of our individuality - which seems sensible when we consider Sedna as an object. And no, this doesn’t mean that to accept your Sedna is to be a ‘loner,' but rather that Sedna is about understanding who you are and what  experience has taught you is true or not true about life...and about yourself.

Whatever that entails. 

Then again, with it’s 11,400 year-long orbit (plus or minus – not even NASA is sure on this one yet) by taking so long to transit through a sign Sedna also marks huge swaths of humanity (and thus eras of human development) at a time.

Oh how curious, right? At the same time that Sedna asks us to individuate by sign it also ‘binds’ millions of human beings to one another.
And maybe that’s the point. Individuation does not mean separation. Individuation is more about the ability to see each thing (or yourself) on its own as part of a greater whole - and in that it urges us to utilize our own talents and the knowledge we('ve) gained through getting a perspective on our own strengths and weaknesses when it comes to living our lives.

When it comes to making something of those lives.

When it comes to deciding who and how and what kind of people we should be investing our life time (the time we have here on Earth) with.

Currently in Taurus, Sedna’s most recent change of sign took place back in 1966 when it left Aries (and entered Taurus).

Before that, Sedna moved from Pisces into Aries back in 1865.

Do a little quick math in this regard and you'll come up with the obvious: for a dwarf planet which takes more than 11,000 years to go once around the Sun, Sedna is pretty much galloping along.

And that means Sedna must be near or at one of the ‘extremes’ (the perihelion or aphelion) of its highly egg shaped orbit around our local Sun.

Which it is - as we can see in this handy NASA diagram.

Image credit: NASA (2012)

Just to make this a bit clearer...with thanks to NASA... here’s another version of Sedna’s orbit generated last year by JPL’s orbital simulator (a wonder of Java technology if there ever was one).

Image credit: JPL (2012)

Sedna is currently about as close to us as it will ever be. And though that's still not all that close, on the metaphysical level that still means a lot, especially as we witness the incredibly rapid evolution society has been going through in the last hundred-plus years.

In fact, it's a sobering thought when we stop and realize that the last time Sedna was this close to Terra Earth the (earth) year was somewhere around 9,000 BCE.

In other words, society as we know society hasn't ever gone through anything like this Sedna period before.

We're it. We're the trailblazers. We're the novices.

We're learning what it means to be an individual born to have opportunities. Those of us born under Sedna in Aries are challenged to get perspective on who we are and who we were born to be while those born under Sedna in Taurus are creating 'opportunities' through which they can discover their own values - and their value as human beings.

This isn't to say our opportunities are always that obvious. We tend to think of 'opportunity' as a positive when the truth is that humans tend to learn more through tough sledding, hard times, defeats and painful inundations - physical, emotional or otherwise.

Evidently it takes a lot to get through to us. Where our images, 'programming' and tradition embody the pretty, the simple, the comforts of ease (all obvious traits in the original Sedna myth) they are the child Sedna's dream and that which leads to a downfall precisely because we - like the mythical Inuit girl - don't want to let go of some 'status quo' we've gotten our psyches 'married to.' We want to 'fit in' - even if it's with that image in our head, despite the many and manifest difficulties.

The whole idea of being individual scares most of us to death. We want to fit in.

And of course there is that other type - the determined individualist who would rather live with the echo of their dreams rather than any realistic, highly mortal Reality.

It's all about perspective - and often our lack of perspective on ourselves or what may truly be possible which causes all the problems.

That’s the hard part to face, starting with the idea that because Sedna asks us to let go of the images we have adopted or which were instilled in us, there's a lot of emotional challenge which comes with Sedna's transits, shifts and general energetics. Probably the one we all face across the board is the facing that our parents (those primal superego molders!) are just real and regular people with their own foibles and fears. They're not only mortal, the person they are may be very different from the person we've (probably unconsciously) internalized.

But until we become conscious and gain perspective on that...we're likely to continue patterning ourselves on initial Sedna images - both good and bad.

For instance, I have a friend (and you can imagine what it's like to be the astrologer's friend, right?) 'patterned' by parents who were each experienced as inconsistent in their own right - and inconsistent with each other. So now this person is 'magically attracted' to partners who, though they look different, evoke the same response.

It's sort of like we are out to prove they can't be loved so they can give up on being loved as a matter of being accepted - which was sadly, their original lesson about what love is.

We all struggle with this lesson until we realize just how blank a slate a child is. Children will imprint on their parents and since our most basic survival as children depends on the love of our parents, whatever they show us we 'image' as love.

When we look at a natal horoscopes, we see these 'love patterns.' And we see the oddly weird way we grow up to 'seek out' or 'pick' people who may or may not actually be like our patterning parents but who will end up evoking those same dynamics and feelings until we gain that very special perspective on life which is so utterly and completely Sedna.

No, it isn't easy. The first time we walk down that 'internally aware' Sedna road love doesn't feel like we're habituated to think it will.

It takes time to learn love and respect for our Self - from ourselves and from others - can be a whole different and often better thing.

But that all is as it is because this is the way life is constructed becomes more obvious when we look at the JPL image of Sedna's orbit, why Sedna represents that true 'above all' superego-type ‘perspective on perspective’ begins becoming obvious, considering how far away from our solar system's "central district" Sedna really is.

It's dark and cold out there, just as dark and just as cold as the depths of the cold northern sea Sedna sinks into...just as dark and encompassing as the depths of our own essence which we sink into when we begin grappling with our Sedna essence.

That chill of newness when the 'comfort' of the known is stripped away is disconcerting

But I guess you could say that we have to go 'out into the cold' to find our answers. So wherever Sedna is in our chart - by sign, by house, by aspect - that is the area of life where we will experience the provocation which drives us to gain perspective on ourselves and our abilities, capacities and personal truths. My friend has Sedna in the 5th house - the house of children, of dating, of doing what one wants to do. So it's not shocking that their "Sedna stuff" pops up in the dating scene, that they're half-past iffy about having kids, that they spend a lot of time in solitary pursuits all about finding out who they are, why they are who they are, why things work as they do and what this all means in terms of their capacity (which is part of why we're friends, I'm sure) and why - given the 5th house/11th house polarity...and how all house placements denote not just the object in that house but the need to 'complete the circuit' by enfolding the this perfectly intelligent, perfectly nice person has such quandaries about self and wanting to fit into their 'group.'

Except of course, that they don't fit in. And there is that pesky fact that when it gets right down to it, they don't want to fit in because their whole drive is about being not alone, but individual.

(Yes, they think it's alone.)

As someone born with Sedna conjunct their Ascendant, I feel for them. I can also tell you that Sedna asks us to step away from the norm and to own our departure from the crowd. This doesn't mean you have to go about preening in your separateness, it just means you go about doing what you do and that you recognize how our greater talents - our Sedna abilities - are part of that 'outer realm,' that 'shell' which both metaphysically holds us in and at the same time, urges us to leave our comfortable cocoons. 

In short, the Sedna Principle pushes us to understand avenues of personal realization which may seem offensive or difficult because they force us to recognize and own individuality and uniqueness. And how being an individual sets us apart at some level from others. Some will never be willing to challenge themselves or go their own way. Some people will separate emotionally if not intellectually while others will be willing to leave the intellectual nest but refuse to leave behind what they conceive of as their ‘comfort zone.’

It’s this state of ‘neither fish nor fowl’ (which with Sedna is more akin to ‘neither able to fish nor likely to want to identify what is so foul’) which confounds us...and which stands to inhabit, color and permeate matters now as Sedna goes retrograde in late Taurus.

At 24 Taurus, to be specific.

As part of the third and most worldly Taurus decanate, 24 Taurus is part of a series of metaphysical passages where our self worth experiences the blessings and trials inherent on a greater scale. This may be in our life in particular. Then again, it could be in the life of a collective – a national population. Or of the nation itself. Lore speaks of 24 Taurus as a degree concerned with spiritual mastery which either witnesses or experiences whatever difficulties such mastery of the ethereal is bound to encounter on this so reality-addicted plane.

Sedna’s turn to retrograde in this degree would seem to be about an awakening of spiritual consciousness…or conscience, however you receive it. Therefore we could expect this station (which begins on the 23rd and extends through the 27th) to arouse feelings akin either at the ‘is this all there is?’ end of things or through some disquieting awareness that in comparison with the whole of "possibility" you, we, our daily lives and world are all very, very small.

Yet on the other hand, we're all important too. If there's one thing science, religion, spirituality and philosophy all agree on, it's that all things happen for a reason. Good, bad, indifferent, terrible, wonderful, questionable - we are all born with abilities which mean something to the totality of What Is.

So in perspective (you know, that Sedna thing) though we may indeed be one tiny part of the Whole, we still are a vital part of that Whole. Nature (call it Incarnation) doesn't waste energy or effort. All that exists has a function.

Thus, so do we. And it's arguable - since we're all energy and everything else is energy too - that we function as the 'microcosm' to the Whole's 'macrocosmic' nature.

How would that be? The simple answer is that we're all energy. You, me, the doorknob - we're all just energy. The next answer is that offered by Systems Theory, namely that the same sequences repeat over and over and over again in life, in biology and botany, in everything from architecture to astrology to relationships. One is the whole, two is the duality, confrontation and opposition, three is the initial 'voicing' of combination and so on.

Systems Theory is actually why the same astrological premise - the horoscope - applies equally to people, puppies, products and nations.

And this matters now why?

Good question - and one I will answer thusly: people who know me in real time occasionally see me wearing this amulet.

This seal is one of a series of symbolic images known in esoteric circles as the “Seals of Solomon” - a reference which takes us back to the years 970-931 BCE. But as pertains to our discussion here, the idea of the interlocked triangles goes back much farther. Thinking in terms of what we just discussed, these interlocking triangles are a symbol of micro/macrocosmic reflection - one the Hermeticists of Egypt probably defined best in one simple and elegant statement: ‘as above, so below.’

It's an idea which applies very well with Sedna, our symbol of the inner Self which ends up defining our outer experiences.

Astrology knows the Hermetic star as a six-pointed figure known as a Grand Sextile: six points each separated by sixty-degree sextiles (with the standard sextile allowance of 3 degrees a given).
In astrological terms the sextile is ‘opportunity’ – a thing we can choose to utilize or not.

Of course when six ‘options’ occur together as a Grand Sextile, what we’re really seeing is a matched set of Grand Trines – each in aspect to other. And since Grand Trines are indicators of ‘ongoing energy’ which we have little-to-no opportunity to shift, change, start or stop, thus is opportunity transformed into a metaphysical… celestial… spiritual mandate.

Because Sedna is going into retrograde with the Sun in early Virgo, and since we know that first decan placements (a planet in degrees 0 to 9) are where signs manifest physically or through our actions, this is an active time all about life (Sun) and our thoughts (Mercury) and what we can do…should do…and what our priorities (read: responsibilities) really are.

So that’s the ‘everyday’ doings into which comes Sedna (a need for perspective) going on station and retrograde in a third decan degree.

Third decanate degrees (any degree between 20 and 29 of a sign) are all about what we put out into the world, how we interface with the world, how we are affected by the world, or how the world reacts to us.

So evidently we need perspective on how to approach things. And as we are doing that, the world (and people in it) will be testing our Sedna potential and probably giving us good reason to ask ourselves where we stand vis-à-vis our sense of mature individuality.

If your chart ‘answers’ to 24 Taurus (in particular), this time is about your ability to operate with perspective or in some manner which helps you to gain perspective.

Of course, you could be one of those folks who just rejects the whole thing, too. There are lots of them out there! you have a planet, position, axis point or node between 19 and 29 degrees of Taurus, Leo, Aquarius, Scorpio, Capricorn or Virgo?

If so, your ability to operate or understand matters represented by that planet, point, node or axis with enough perspective (on yourself, the origins of your choices and the ramifications thereof) is on the celestial table.

For those with planets, points, axis points or nodes between 22 and 26 Aries, Gemini, Sagittarius or Libra...

...problems or quandaries which arise now are all about a need for perspective. They key to all things probably starts with asking why people (yourself included) are doing whatever they’re doing.
No, you may not like the answer. But you may realize something vitally important.

Or maybe you have a positions, planets, axis points or node between 21 and 27 Pisces or Cancer?

If so, this is an opportunity to gain perspective or to utilize perspective in the gaining of some end which is prosperous and positive for you and everyone else. 

One other group merits a mention here - those whose birthdays (e.g., solar return) fall between the dates August 23rd and August 27th.

I don’t say this often enough – and yes, it applies whenever any planet, dwarf planet, asteroid or TNO takes station. I'm reminded of this because I have friends with birthdays on August 24th and August 27th (and happy birthday and many fine solar returns to you both).

The Solar Return point is this: if your birthday falls under the auspices of any ‘station window,’ your whole “birthday year” (solar return year, otherwise known as from birthday to birthday) is going to be colored, not necessarily by the specifics of any event, but by the underlying theme - in this case, the Sedna theme – aka a Sedna-conjunct-Capulus-at-24-Taurus theme.

Capulus is a the fixed star said to represent the sword with which Perseus cut off Medusa’s head. Typically associated with ‘penetrating’ energies (which indeed may be phallic), Capulus in Taurus is its own potent quotient which pits what we want to do purely for our own pleasure (or those we definitely favor) versus our willingness to open ourselves to greater possibilities.

Currently, Capulus is at 24 Taurus. That puts it in an exact conjunction with Sedna’s station.

I wish my friends well. One of them already knows to ask questions whenever they want and I trust the other one will learn. In the meantime, if you have a Sedna puzzle, please ask. After all, if you read this labor of love known as my astro-blog, you must know I care. And yes, that’s my Sedna-at-the-Ascendant. It manifests in many different ways, most of which make me uncomfortable as all get-out. So if you ever meet me in real life you'll find that I’m often awkward, in reality terribly shy and yet prone to frivolously playful drama which entertains others - that being my effort to help them feel better about themselves.

Like I say, that's my Sedna. I may feel awkward and shy but through helping them feel not so awkward and shy I facilitate our becoming closer.

It's a process. With Sedna, we take it all step by step by step. We figure out where and how our 'naked selves' are not so bad. In fact, we're pretty beautiful. And even when we hide...well, there are those who think of blogging as a 'clinging to anonymity.' Fifty years ago nobody knew what an author looked like and nobody worried. A hundred years ago people made firm and fast pen pal friendships with people they had never met.

Some of those pen pals even decided to get married. 

The world’s suspicions don’t make me a jot less or more sincere about what I do. So if I'm shy and if I can write to you here and give you a gift which just may be better delivered without any personal presence tainting the works, that's Sedna in the positive. And that this blog is all about offering you perspectives on Existence is exactly Sedna at the Ascendant: what I do (Ascendant = do) is "Sedna-like."

Hopefully some of it serves you well as you pursue your personal, Earthly Journey.

The last notion to contemplate here is how after the window on Sedna’s station opens on the 23rd (with Sedna going retrograde on the 25th), as the 27th rolls through and Sedna’s station effects fade, they fade into the appearing of a double grand trine – a Hermetic star – forming above us in the heavens. 

And that makes the Sun and Mercury entering Virgo leading into Sedna’s station a sign that what has been has been…and that we are – all of us – passing through a ‘bridging point’ where Above and Below stand in reflection.

This linking of linkages will be in effect only for a few minutes in the wee hours of early August 29th (UT/+0 time). But such links do tend to evolve over time - and since I have rolled through what is to come I can add here that this theme of 'grand sextiling' (if you will) is going to continue on into September...even for some October, depending on what kind of placements are in your personal natal chart.

(Yes, it works that way too. Also yes, if we have points which 'line up' closely with any given position of a grand sextile, that will be one of the funnels through which energy will focus in our lives and which we will be asked to evolve from.

All such double Grand Trines (or Grand Sextiles) will by definition link points in different elements. This one has four objects aligning in the 'tangible' element of earth: Pluto (transformation), the South Node (what we find easy to do) and Mercury (thought, communication, day-to-day activity)...against three other objects Saturn (time, structure, responsibility, commitment), Jupiter (growth, expansion, acquisition of knowledge-comprehension) and Chiron (that we need to do which we cannot understand except by doing) in emotionally evocative water signs.

Earth plus water sometimes equals unparalleled fertility and fruitful growth. On the other hand, sometimes earth plus water only equals mud – and hence the muddying of the waters, the washing away of earth, the dissolution of stability.

Four out of six points (Chiron, South Node, Jupiter and Mercury) are in second decanate positions. The second decan (degrees 10-19 of any sign) is where the sign manifests emotionally. So is South Node in Taurus about contentment, selfishness, self respect, lack of self worth, inertia or a willingness to do what you can? Is Jupiter in Cancer a new start? Is it opening the doors to others or the working on ways to remain hidden in your castle (mental or otherwise)? And is Mercury in Virgo the keeping on with what you’re doing or being too busy to be bothered? Is it doing what you’re required to but not really want you can do?

And Chiron in Pisces....? Well…that’s just every variety of ‘how to do what I know I need to do but which I don’t really want to do because…because…because’ with all the ‘because’s (read: justifications) being some variety about not wanting to experience your own emotions or emotionality.

Two of the four points in the emotional second decanate are in water signs. This is about how emotions effect you: how you express your feelings as a reaction to your own feeling process. Plus, seeing as one of these objects (Chiron) is in the unbounded 'emotional deep water' sign of Pisces, we know the Chirotic part of this equation is expressing feelings about how you feel about having to feel in any case - and not knowing what to do about it or how to deal with it. 

Then there’s Saturn and Pluto (Pluto/Facies, really) in first decan degrees relating to what we do and our physical existence.

(If you want to read up on Pluto’s ongoing game of dice with Facies, here’s a LINK to that post. There are several, so use the Facies or Facies/Pluto link in the sidebar if you want to read more.)

Saturn in Scorpio is the need to meet others on a genuine basis of equality. Nobody likes it, everybody needs to do it if they want to get create any lasting or valuable alliances. The opposition to South Node in Taurus represents the fear that we may be doing something wrong. Or doing what we’re doing with the wrong person. The question here is really about quality and trustworthiness though many will try to get by on flash (qualities which look good but don’t measure up) and uttering hollow promises.

As for Pluto (Facies) in Capricorn, nobody is getting away with not facing life’s complexities. Those who think they can ‘get away’ with not making quality efforts may succeed in the short run but they’re sure to lose in the long run. (Saturn will reach Facies in 2018.)

Sometimes Grand Sextiles (celestial six-pointed stars) will denote something coming into being. More often they refer to a fateful change which moves us from one ‘era’ of our life to another. I’ve had two years marked by Grand Sextiles in my solar chart and neither of them were gentle. In linking water and earth barely in the wake of Sedna’s station this Grand Sextile suggests an irrevocable shift of values which empowers an incremental gain in our grasp on life which causes us to feel our values more deeply.

Or maybe more acutely.

However...with that said, this is not a 'rock solid' Grand Sextile in the sense that sextiles are only given a 3 degree orb. Mercury - which serves as the linchpin in this planetary picture - is within 3 degrees of orb to Saturn at 9 Virgo and within 3 degrees of the sixty-degree sextile orb to Jupiter only once it moves into 10 Virgo.

So there are some 'purists' out there who would tell you that there is no Grand Sextile at all. Being someone who has experienced them and timed their effects, I say 'not true' to that. But I will - for the sake of being conservative - say that Mercury makes its move from 9 to 10 Virgo at 1:57 in the morning, UT/+0 time.

You be the judge from there. 

Many will now choose to allow themselves to embody, utilize and voice that which they learn now. Astrologers, astrologically savvy or merely as people wandering through this world, through what they separate from and recognize as their new reality, such people will become indelibly more self-reflective. They won’t have to search as much as they know who they are and thus can devote themselves to whatever it is they do and can now do in Reality because they have met, accepted and adapted to their sense of personal individuality.

To accept our Sedna is to be able to look at life – our life and that around us with understanding born of perspective. If your ‘before’ involved some hurt, you may not be able to ‘solve’ the hurt, but you may come to understand that what you now know and what you now value is in part all about your having been hurt.

All things have purpose. All experiences enhance our potential to understand. In the Sedna realm – which is to say in the lasting process of personal maturation - there is no ‘escaping’ the darker aspects of life. But that’s okay. Life’s dips, shadows and sorrows give shape, depth and richness to our achievements. They motivate our wisdom.

They give us a reason to love.

As we grapple with our Sedna process, we gain exponential human power. It’s not the type of power which grants dominion over this or control over that – this is the power of being.

And when we feel powerful as a being, we don’t worry about control or dominion. We become content to earn respect and the love which grows from that.

Through acceptance of the Sedna Principle we end our denials and stop trying to ‘fit in.’ Once we accept the power of our uniqueness we have no reason for either as we know why we are...and who we can become. It's the struggle, the regrets, the not knowing what 'lies beyond' that we know...the separating from long-held dreams or images bequeathed to us by loved ones which is hard.

But that's part of Sedna too. Learning that we can disagree with someone we love, we can like different things and accept that we are different and that we can still love them and be loved by them is the essence of having perspective on life as a whole. To accept the individualization described by Sedna's energetics is difficult. But without them we become a crippling force - and despite the tendency to project and blame others, the person we tend to cripple is ourselves.

Is it a lot to ask of a station that it escort us into a moment of fateful evolution? Perhaps yes, perhaps no. Sedna's turn to retrograde speaks to a process of internal growth we will experience within ourselves and with or through our interactions with others, with challenges, with life. We separate from others not so as to be apart, but so that we can recognize our own potential to contribute and to be someone who is recognized for their abilities and attributes, their willingness to be who they are rather than 'the image' or that which is currently popular.

By the time next February arrives and Sedna goes direct again, we will have wrestled with this process a bit more. We will have met up with or witnessed or have been exposed to things which get us to seeing, feeling and sensing the difference between 'fitting in' or 'molding' our Self into anything which is other that who we are, whatever that means.

Some of us will let go and begin sinking into the depths of that enveloping darkness of total, inexorable being from which we are able to tap into our potential as something with which to contribute to a greater whole - a life, a world, a society, a family, a group of sync with our potential. Some of those people may understand for having gone through their own Sedna process, some will never understand.

We will stand witness, we will serve our purpose and service our sense of being through the contributing of our life to this world for all its worth without resistance.

In embracing our Sedna power we become part of the 'sea of capacity' and in that, we become capable of washing away that which needs to be washed clean. We become embodied and imbued with that power which can carry others away and dash hopes on sharp rocks of reality.

What we cannot do is live a surface life any more. And in that, for those who now manage to see their way past at least several of the images in our hall of mental mirrors, therein lies the Sedna dictate which separates one person from another, the matriculated beings from those who don't have the courage to trust that they have been created with potentials far more important and satisfying than possessions, physicality or anything which manifests as part of our everyday world.

As much as we want to be seen as individuals and 'own' our own lives, most of us are stunningly reluctant to be different.

And yet, that difference is the very definition of uniqueness. And human beings - apparently separate beings born one by one by one at precise times at precise places with signatures so unique they won't repeat for millions if not trillions of years...?

We are nothing if not unique. The only question is whether we're brave enough to be as wonderful as we are - and can be.