by Boots Hart, CAP

Sunday, February 26, 2017

March 2017: Retrograde with Square

Looking past the Moon's haloed edge, Venus rides high.
(photo credit: NASA/USGS,1994)
March always begins with Sun in Pisces. And being that Sun in Pisces is a time when, in having our consciousness focused through the Piscean ‘lens,’ we are (or we become) more capable of perceiving the gross as well as the subtle, the sly as it stands side-by-side with the adept - and how all which is tremulous or terrible co-exists with that which is hard, harsh and compassionate, not just in this world but in our minds and souls.

And that’s just what happens when we look into the mirror first thing in the morning.

A sign of the indestructible strength which we think of as 'the energy of spirit,' Pisces embodies the core principles of vulnerability - and how we are all of us vulnerable, most of all to our own regard,opinion or judgment. Yet at the same time, we are each also capable of courage - and specifically the kind of immortal courage which allows us to feel weak or to surrender to something because we know that the essential quality of who we 'are' - our spirit - can and will ultimately survive regardless of how terrible life or other people actually are.

And because of this ... because Pisces embodies the idea of both our emotional strengths and weaknesses, Pisces becomes the sign (and colors the 12th house precept) which speaks to how in spite of all our earnest efforts, how often we each remain dishonest with our Self, specifically about that Self because we are indeed not strong enough to face realities - which inevitably leads to tripping over our own denials at some point.

That said, not every March begins with Venus in Aries... or with Venus about to go retrograde in any sign, for that matter ... and both of those ideas are little sagas unto themselves. 

First, the Venus in Aries part. With Venus in Aries, we may be going through challenges to, or be very much in the midst of feeling strong about things or totally sufficient. We may be questioning our own motivations, aims or abilities very insecurely ... or we may be striding through our days with an air of certainty, as if we know the answer to every question.

Venus is normally a ‘connective’ type of energy which prompts us to do whatever is needed in order to 'connect to' and ‘secure’ our wants and needs. But Venus in Aries is Venus flying solo - which can represent a non-connecting, and the disappointment or lack which might go with that. We may be feeling very inspired about what we need to do in order to reach our goals and (Venusian) 'rewards' ... or we may feel forgotten, lonely, without aim, rejected, ignored, undervalued or simply underappreciated.

Then again, as Venus represents that which we do, produce, exhibit or become in order to 'make gains' of some type, as Aries is the sign of 'me-I-Self,' Venus in Aries may indicate  working on something for our personal (‘Self’) benefit, whether that involves working on a project or working to improve, fix, rehabilitate or 'make gains' with regards to some sort of injury which has affected us physically, financially, emotionally or in some other manner.

So that's the start of the Venus conversation. But that's not all we should care about as a 'hold over' or overarching dynamic as March starts out. For one, there is a grand square in progress - one which evolved out of the Pluto t-square which has been with us since last fall. That remains with us as well.

Having originated as a t-square which had Jupiter in opposition to Uranus (and Eris) with Pluto at the t-square's ‘hurdle’ or testing point, the t-square represented all the many things which were confronting each one of us as 2016 moved through its last several months. We had no ability to actually control what was going on - at least not totally (Pluto at a t-square apex will do that!). So all we could do is adapt, cope, resist or go through some pretty torturous attempts to wrestle things back to where they felt manageable (or managed), none of which was likely to have been all that much fun because we each felt challenged specifically by qualities or questions which poked us in our personal soft spots.

Pluto is like that.

As Vesta’s transiting of Cancer has now brought it into opposition to Pluto, most of us are likely to be feeling more 'grounded' at this point. But now we are dealing with complications of some sort - and for some of us, those complications are pretty darn complicated!

In point of fact, some of us will only be just keeping up with things at the moment, even as all the elements of testiness and the testing of us which have in progress continue. And while that will offer us the ability or a possibility to learn a good deal about how life (and our life, in particular) works, because those insights are likely to come through events, dynamics and moments which cause us to see things from perspectives other than our own (and other than those we might want to believe in) just getting to the point where we decide to compromise, change, give in, or whatever else ... all that is going to take a bit of time and doing.

And all of that, what with Venus about to go retrograde, is hardly what we are likely to be in the mood for.

It’s just not our most patient moment - which makes the idea of being subject to odd delays now most ironic (not to mention annoying). Of course with Jupiter (retrograde) and Uranus about perfect the exactness of their opposition just after the month begins, there is some possibility of a ‘big break’ or ‘step forward’ as March starts out. Or that a few of us will reach some ‘breaking point’ about something, whether that means we decide to speak up (or out), decide we have had our fill of something (or someone) ... or whether we find ourselves eagerly sorting through a bucket of fresh opportunities just left on our doorstep, mental or otherwise.

Due to be with us until April 7th, this grand square begins March with Vesta conjunct fixed star Castor (one of the Gemini twins), bringing up the idea of 'costs,' typically concerning something material or physical and possibly referring to the cost of counting on something physical (or some physical quality)... even while fixed star Pollux (the other Gemini twin) being conjunct Apollo (retrograde) tends to represent some fact or truth which is embodied or expressed through thought or more intellectual/thoughtful means -- with the whole of this juxtaposition tending to reflect some sort of emotionally-framed question about choices and priorities.

In opposition to this question of costs and 'what it is' (or is about), Vega, Nemesis, Rukbat, Pluto and Kleopatra speaks to some form of 'solid concept' – either in the world or in our head - which concerns us in terms of its (Vega) appeal, (Rukbat) 'standing,' for one thing ... and which, with Pluto conjunct Kleopatra, may have the capacity to ‘come back to bite us’ (yes, just like the asp did), specifically in some manner which was (Nemesis) foretold or which we were warned about, even if we didn't (Vega) find the information (or idea) very appealing.

In being positioned in Capricorn and Cancer, signs which often refer to how we think of our Self in this world, issues or qualities of ‘identity,’ reputation and status may be involved - all of which differs from the Uranus/Eris opposition to Jupiter, which in being in Aries and Libra is more about what we are able to do and affect personally.

With Jupiter retrograde in Libra’s third decanate, something now keys on our ability (or) willingness to participate with, integrate into or function as 'part of' something greater, be that a group, effort, situation or ongoing process. We may need to 'catch up' or to be caught up by others as well. With Kassandra in Aries, not being believed is in this mix - whether on our part or that of others. And with Medusa next in line, that tends to say the thing not being believed is not being believed because it causes or stirs up some sort of fear, be that a real-time fear about something which could  happen (or) some sort of psychological fear which speaks to the many things in life we stand to damage if and where we do not have the capacity to trust ... or where our trust is founded in (or based on) something which is simply not true (or) something we are scared to know/accept about our Self, specifically where that pertains to where we may have (Sisyphus) chosen to humor (or) amuse our Self at cost to, or as part of a lack of respect for others.

With Uranus and Eris both at 22 Aries, revelations and fractures occur where we have refused to undertake the hard work to understand fully, where we fail to bring things to fruition consistently and where we are (or have been) unwilling to accept heavy responsibility. This combination will also tend to destabilize things where we grant our Self latitude or unmerited leniency - or where we are willing to accept applause and benefits without having merited them.

If or where we have done such things, Uranus and Eris at 22 Aries is capable of exposing our lack of integrity – at least to us! However with that said, because Uranus/Eris is part of the ongoing and evolving grand square, it is equally (if not even more) likely any willful or willing ‘transgressions’ of standards on our part will now come up for examination.

With Venus squaring Pluto as Venus is inching towards going retrograde, all of this is likely to translate as feelings of concern, whether those concerns materialize over time or not. Given the recent 8 Pisces Solar Eclipse and its emphasis on personal matters rather than business, we may be feeling more than a little ‘hemmed in’ – with all of this being more stark or bothersome if we are not currently involved in doing something useful, or usefully productive ... and with questions arising where some project breaks down now. Does it have the potential to be or become something productive?

March 1 
With the Sun and Mercury running in conjunction as both move into Pisces’ second and most emotion-promoting decanate (degrees 10-19), Pandora’s going retrograde at 10 Scorpio as the month begins refers to something we care about, and all we face because of that priority. Things may go against us (or our idea or effort), or we may be having to focus on why we care or believe as we do as we pursue our aims or simply ‘hold our own’ in the face of whatever may be seeking to distract, discourage or dislodge us.

Pandora, Trying to Close the Box, an engraving by F. S. Church (19th century)

With the degree 10 Scorpio being triggered here, all may not be as it seems (or) appears, which may mean we (or others) are not seeing things clearly … or that someone is trying to deceive, lie, or hide/hide from something, whatever that may be or concern. Mind you, one 'side' may think they are just 'testing the waters' to see how others feel, but how that gets done may either reveal (or) look like insincerity or deceit, leading to consequential problems.

With the Sun conjuncting Neptune on this date (with Mercury not far away) there will be some tendency to lie to others (or) to deceive ourselves through overestimating our own capacity ... or through not taking others (or their intentions) seriously. With Pandora's station overlapping that of Chaos, this may occur because we are otherwise overwhelmed, distracted - or just plain busy, whether for reasons positive or negative. Either way, with Pandora turning to retrograde, something about our hopes or specifically what we hope for is 'taking a turn' at the moment, and that is going to provide us with reason to reflect - and maybe change our mind. 

March 2 
As the name suggests, Trans Neptunian Objects (or TNOs) orbit beyond Neptune, the last ‘fully-fledged’ planet in our solar system (that we know of, at least). And as one of these objects is Chaos, that means Chaos and all the endless possibilities TNO Chaos represents come to us in an ‘out of the blue’ sort of manner.

(Or out of the blackness, perhaps – it’s dark out there in space!)

In any case, unlike Plutinos like Ixion, Pluto and Huya (among others) whose orbits are controlled by Neptune, Chaos is a Cubewano, meaning it's path is its own - a quality which is important to us when we think about the astrology of Chaos as it suggests Chaos represents ideas, alternatives, choices and options which are more or less ours alone to make (or experience) - and which are also ours to find.

In some sense therefore, like all Cubewanos, Chaos is at least in part about finding our way and what we do individually to find that personal path through anything - or what happens when we abdicate the responsibility for thinking and exercising our options in life. 

So what kind of 'options' is this Chaos station theoretically 'about'? In going direct at 20 Gemini, we know we are dealing with an idea - or the need to come up, refine, understand or deal with some thought or idea. We also know this idea or issue is not precisely simply about us - others, or the world around us needs to be taken into consideration. As Chaos is going direct, those external factors are what we will work with (or) be influenced by, and with this station occurring in the wake of the 8 Pisces solar eclipse, there is more than the usual reason to wonder (and care about) whether the references to delusions, illusions and ‘unseen influences’ written about in connection with 20 Gemini are in play here.

If so, are they our illusions - or those of others we are dealing with, or having to contend with?

That Medea is retrograding out of Leo back into Cancer at the moment suggests some basic concerns replacing what may have been gung-ho efforts - or the need for that change to take place. Does this mean we are now coming to understand where some 'obsession' comes from - or where it might end up leading? It might. Then again, this shift may represent that which keeps us from thinking about things productively because we are overly focused on some personal perspective of some kind.

March 3 
Jupiter and Uranus have been in opposition - by orb - for quite a while now. But come 1:20 in the morning UT/+0 time on March 3rd, Jupiter’s ongoing retrograde will cause it to 'perfect' that opposition. And that means some of us (typically those whose charts are aspected by this 22 Libra-22 Aries opposition) will experience some sort of 'flex moment' where something which has been 'grown’ in influence ‘pushes’ at us, requiring acknowledgement - at least in our minds, if nothing else.

As part of the ongoing grand square, this Jupiter/Uranus energetic 'trigger' may affect a lot of things, some of which we may not even be paying attention to - or even be aware of at the moment. So what are we likely to see, learn or become conscious of? That will vary widely and be thought of by most (in the long run) as part of the function of our overall  ‘changing times.’ For some, things which occur now will change our perspective - and thus at least some of our choices and emphases. Plus there is also some chance situations may now cause us to act ‘out of turn,’ out of character or in a manner completely incongruous to all else, whether for better or worse, startling others while feeling freed by having taken initiative into our own hands.

Any time we see Uranus being active, we know there is a chance for instability, uncertainty, and for things to progress, change or shift at an unpredictable rate (or) in a manner we are unfamiliar with. With this opposition occurring a mere day shy of Venus’ turn to retrograde, some may be tempted to ‘make a move,’ particularly one which aims to avoid or  escape some sort of confinement or restriction, real, circumstantial or mental. And while such efforts may play out well enough, given Venus’ turn to retrograde it is unlikely things will be exactly what we wanted them to be - whatever that may mean.

As with all personal planet stations, Venus' turning retrograde points to something individual (and therefore 'personal') which either needs further development, which is not yet 'ready' to come to fruition (or) which we need to contend with (complete, re-examine, understand, etcetera) before we can properly move on or 'capitalizing' on our efforts without selling our Self short. So we may need to ‘slow down’ and think things through before leaping out there to run after something we may already know we want, but which is currently either beyond our grasp (literally or figuratively) or which requires some new or different plan. 

March 4 
Continuing on with this busy first week of March, the next astrological event concerns fixed and royal star Antares, as Antares will be moving from 9 to 10 Sagittarius as of March 4th.

This shift (among other things) again puts Antares is an exact to-the-degree opposition with Aldebaran (currently at 10 Gemini), a situation which hasn’t been astrologically ‘in force’ since October 2, 2014, and which we have seen reflected since that date in the rise of fudged standards, fuzzy logic, the ignoring of laws, rules, standards and priorities - and a host of other iffy corner cutting moves.

The greater or ‘systemic’ metaphysical effect of this move will be noticed over time. But on a more immediate basis this may well indicate a 're-focusing' on issues of (Aldebaran) integrity - whether that means we are wanting greater integrity or to eliminate whatever integrity exists.

And to make this a lot more problematic, or possibly giving us a reason for more focus is a wee little fact concerning a point named Asbolus which came within orb of Aldebaran back in April of 2015, and which because Asbolus is not a planet but rather an astronomical centaur means here in 2017 it is still conjuncting Aldebaran and not due to finish doing that until July 3, 2017.

So, what is Asbolus about? If you think of Asbolus as something akin to a Pied Piper who works for "the dark side," you'll just about have it.

The problem is, that 'dark side' is our own inner nature. Since April 2015, something (or things, or persons, or ideas) with the power and charisma of a guru has been stirring instincts and pots with equal aplomb. Considered a 'sooty' influence, Asbolus leads us astray by appealing to that part of our psyche which wants to feel 'gratified' - or maybe just less hapless, and its conjunction with Aldebaran while opposing Antares describes very well the upheavals so many countries have been experiencing, complete with illusions cast and delusions being clung to.

The good news (if there is any) about this is that there is a final 'surge' of this about to be experienced (under Venus retrograde, no less) before Asbolus moves on to stirring up other mischief. But in the interim we are going to be more porous and more easily swindled by our desire to be 'carried away' by - or in the company of others, particularly those people we may find compelling or attractive for some reason.

Antares as part of Constellation Scorpio

And that’s not all that’s worth noting about this date, as March 4th is also the date on which Saturn and Ixion – which by transit came into conjunction back on February 5, 2017 - are finally parting ways, which should indicate some sort of restriction or pressure (that we feel inside) ending, for whatever reason. With this conjunction taking place in a Sagittarian third decanate degree, whatever is at stake is not wholly personal, and given the recent Pisces solar eclipse, at least part of what happens now will like as not be (and continue being) about some form of the ‘dispelling’ or ‘dissolving’ of illusions and structures of various kinds ... or illusions about structures of various kinds - with all of this being in spite of preexisting promises, commitments even previously held positions.

Because Saturn is is breaking out of an exact conjunction to Ixion but not its orb to Ixion, this is not about 'walking away' from something - things are unlikely to be that 'clean' or simple. And seeing as Saturn first entered its current orb to Ixion back on December 3rd, whatever happens now is part of a greater process or personal life effort, lesson or achievement. More on whatever happens now is to come in the months ahead, too: after Saturn goes retrograde in April, it will come back to conjuncting Ixion as of May 25th - which may indicate some effort (or repeat of effort) to 'have our cake and eat it too,' or which may refer to a period of ‘making good’ on something.

That second Saturn/Ixion joining will last until June 8th, at which point Saturn will move off Ixion and continue its retrograde, timing out the completion of whatever we are experiencing once Saturn goes direct and returns to the exact conjunction with Ixion which will last from October 25th through November 4th.

And even after that, Saturn will (again) be in orb to Ixion - that being a situation which does not end until ... rather interestingly ... Saturn exits Sagittarius and enters its own ‘home’ sign of Capricorn on December 20, 2017. 

And that tends to say there is going to be a lot of negativity and self-destructive choices being made (and/or) becoming a reality, plus many a chance to sabotage ourselves being encountered wherever we are unwilling to be responsible about holding our selves (and things) to standards. Saturn-Ixion speaks to how well we understand how to have (or build) the kind of ‘structures’ which allow us to be independent of others, but which also teach us (sometimes harshly) that we must continue to care about universal standards, lest the corrupting of all to our own pleasure proves to be our undoing.

And let's be very real and realistic here (which would behoove the Saturn moment): in being in a late Sagittarian degree this combination also has every chance to be dogmatic - or beyond that, obsessively insistent, even where we are either wrong (or) overstepping our bounds by demanding or requiring that others follow our path, accept our choices (or) otherwise believe as we may believe ourselves as an individual.  

And all that is without thinking about Antares. Antares is that royal star which promises success only where we avoid obsessions and obsessive choices - or acting in an obsessed or obsessive manner, which is hardly what its position in Sagittarius' first decanate tends to promote.

As for the specifics of that position, Antares has long been positioned at 9 Sagittarius--since mid-1945, to be exact. Through all those years, questions of and about ‘obsessions’ or ‘obsessiveness’ have been experienced through attitude – the outward display of an inward feeling, with both extremes (the very positive and the very sour) being unlikely to produce success under any circumstance, for any of a number of reasons. However, once Antares moves into 10 Sagittarius - - the degree Antares will occupy until March of the year 2088 - - success will depend at least in part on qualities of moderation or balance which are felt (or displayed) emotionally, all of which is saying a mouthful, as Sagittarius is a sign all about ideas and the energy of being, becoming or resisting (even feeling threatened by) ideas, whether new, old, sensible or preposterous ... and not so much about emotionality per se as fervency, conviction, enthusiasm or optimism.

With 10 Sagittarius being the opening degree of Sagittarius' second ten-degree decanate, there is a natural increase of all those Sagittarian motivations even without Antares. So with Antares at 10 Sagittarius we can expect more energy to be expressed through what we do and are convinced of ... even as real obsessiveness (and obsessions, be they ours or that of someone else) need to be avoided. 

The plus of 10 Sagittarius is its inventiveness: this is a degree known for utilizing whatever is encountered, with a definite edge or 'bent' towards informing others - whether that means educating them, warning them, selling them on something or promoting ourselves through (or by utilizing) whatever we have ‘discovered' - all of which stands to be magnified by the Antares effect, thereby challenging us to 'hold the line' and not go 'overboard.' This challenge is well mirrored by the other end of the 10 Sagittarius spectrum, as the 10 Sagittarius negatives include lying, falsification of important facts, false claims of ownership, theft, impersonation and various forms of unauthorized usage,  boundary breaking and invasion. 

All of that stand to be all the more trying with Antares at 10 Sagittarius. And yet, all of that also has to be dealt with, accepted, understood and conquered if we expect ourselves to succeed - individually or collectively - long term. 

So what does all this mean that it is occurring just as Venus is going retrograde at 13 Aries as of 9:10 a.m. (UT/+0) here in the early part of March?

For one, it tends to say a lot of things are going to surface or ‘come out’ around the time of this Venus retrograde station ... so given how Venus speaks to 'results' and what 'comes' of our choices, presentations and attitudes, at least we won’t be bored. Unhappy? Maybe. Disappointed or disenchanted with someone (or) some thing? 

That's not unlikely either, as Venus stations (particular the turn to retrograde) tend to present us with that which is not done, or which has come to some juncture or junction which we aren't precisely delighted by. As with all stations, Venus’ shift to retrograde often indicates a ‘turn’ in some situation or our opinion, from which come changes in our choices, priorities, schedules and capacities. Associated with ‘resources’ (be they personal, emotional, relational, financial or otherwise) Venus speaks to our ability and efforts to glue things down or bring them into ‘concrete reality’ - which means its retrogrades are often times when that 'concreting' process gets held up, when the thing which 'fill the gap' fails to do so, or when we simply find our effort or Self held back or 'contained' by the lack of support or resources. 

Venus is an energy of ‘attraction' which like a hinge gives us some measure of how 'for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction’ operates. Therefore, when Venus goes into retrograde, not only do our choices and actions tend to not produce 'equal and opposite reactions,' but even when they do elicit a response, that response tends not to be what we wanted or expected.

And even when it is what we expected, that generally fails to satisfy or otherwise 'scratch' our itch.

Why would that be? That would be because under Venus retrograde, we are not supposed to be looking to others or outside forces for our satisfaction or support - which is not only against Venus' basic astrological Venusian nature, but also being heightened this time around by the fact that Venus will be going retrograde in Aries. That tends to say we will both be wanting more and less satisfied with what we have (or) get, regardless of its quality or quantity. 

It also says that this year's passage of Venus through Aries, a transit which began on February 3rd and which lasts until June 6th (with a few weeks of reprieve during April when Venus retrogrades back into Pisces) is a celestial exercise in learning far more about our Selves than others in a very explicit and instructional sort of way. Venus' passages and transits are always about learning whether we are doing ‘enough,’ doing the right thing or doing it correctly - with most of Venus' 'lessons' being experiential, which means we often learn the most through those ouch-laden Venus-motivated failures when/where we do not achieve some personal goal.

As for Venus in Aries, this is a transit which brings with it questions about being ‘right’ or ‘good enough,’ which tends to 'thin the skin' and make us all a bit more touchy or defensive. The support we think 'should' be there doesn't 'feel' right, or like it is 'enough' - all of which becomes exacerbated under the retrograde, manifesting in anything from nicked feelings to full on snarling.

Then there are the standard Venusian issues of 'what do we value?' and whether that is ‘up to snuff’ or 'enough.' Resources and feelings of ability tend to feel insufficient under Venus in retrograde (in any sign), which suggests that under Venus retrograding in Aries we will be thinking on how to improve our lot or capacity, regardless of - or even perhaps without (or in spite of) others. All of this tends to make Venus retrograde a time of revamping, reflection and considerations, with most of us knowing (instinctively) to look both at our Self and our values as well as those of others - though surely there are some who will blame things only on others or take everything to be their personal 'fault.'

All and all, this makes Venus retrograding in Aries a time when difficulties and setbacks are useful in that we are likely to learn from them (particularly over time). But the process? That is unlikely to be hugely enjoyable. Maybe we need new priorities? Do we need new material(s) to work with? Or a fresh approach, goal, method or attitude? With Venus in Aries, all is about us and all is to be done and felt by us.

And given Venus is retrograding for the most part through Aries, that suggests commentaries, critiques and complaints - and even the occasional compliment (sincere or not) as part of Venus' retrograde stew, with those who are in sincere need of help, support or assistance tending to get ignored, short-changed, undercut, cheated, cut off, rejected or otherwise left on their own in spite of negative consequences.

Venus Station-Retrograde (glyph chart)
March 4, 2017 - 9:10 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Venus Station-Retrograde (text chart)
March 4, 2017 - 9:10 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Given all of that, it shouldn't be surprising if at least some of us experience this Venus in Aries retrograde as an uncaring or even hostile time (or) when issues of selfishness, separation, lack of concern and denial of responsibility all abound. 

With all of that said, having this Venus retrograde begin with Venus conjunct Euphrosyne (the goddess of merriment) and Charybdis suggests we are coming to this moment in a (Charybdis) ‘swirl’ or ‘stirring’ of (Euphrosyne) good feelings - which with 13 Aries (the degree of station) suggesting events, situations and moments rife with ‘karma’ now encounter some sort of response, result, consequence or repercussion. With thirteen being a ‘bridging’ number, some part of things now involve whether we (or the thing we are doing) are ready or ‘matured’ enough to ‘step up’ or take 'a next step,’ with difficulties and setbacks generally indicating an overage of 'Self' (Self-orientation), an idea which, given the Sabian symbol for this degree (‘An unexploded bomb reveals an unsuccessful social protest’), may well indicate something which is slowing us down or causing us to 'pull back' so that our ideas or efforts (our “bomb,” in other words) not get ‘exploded’ before we have sufficient (Venus retrograde) time to make it capable and worthy of the reactions and responses we are looking, waiting and hoping for.

Of course, many of us will not want to slow down, stop or reconsider - that is also common at Venus stations, and often what gets us into trouble. With Venus going on station in square to Pluto, we may feel compelled to 'try' something, as Venus/Pluto contacts tend to arouse feelings of compulsion, temptation and feelings of invincibility which most often are far from warranted. This combination may also manifest in feelings of being 'teased' or 'taunted' - or by some notion of 'missing out' on something.

With that Venus which is squaring Pluto also in a not-so-comfortable semi-sextile with Neptune (at 11 Pisces), Mercury (at 12 Pisces), the Sun (at 14 Pisces) and fixed star Achernar (at 15 Pisces), there is also some chance lies, deceits, misunderstandings, misstatements or incorrect assumptions are creating conflict, particularly where or if we have failed to find or express our individual ‘uniqueness,’ with problems arising where (Antares at 10 Sagittarius) where we are not being original (or) where we ‘borrow’ something without permission or proper and honest acknowledgment.

There are six weeks of Venus retrograde ahead, all of which come with several ‘standard' astrological thoughts ("warnings"), most of which have to do with how under Venus retrograde our ‘tastes’ and ‘values’ are in flux and therefore not likely to be of the same nature they will be once Venus comes out of retrograde. Because of this, most astrologers refer to Venus retrograde as a period of time when we should be more cautious and careful than usual when making significant changes to appearance, when thinking of ‘signing on the dotted line’ or where major personal or financial commitments are concerned.

With Venus being the ruler of Libra (and Libra being the sign in opposition to Venus' current position in Aries), we will surely learn a lot about who we are not and what we do not agree with (or want to be part of) during the weeks ahead. Relationships may cool temporarily or even permanently - or we may now experience something which leads us to understand just how much someone means to us.

Venus Anadynomene (Venus of the Sea) by Théodore Chasseriau (1838)
Lastly, given the ‘two-days-prior/two-days-after’ “station allowance” we give to moments like this, anything which occurs between March 4 and March 7 should be taken with more than just a grain or two of sand. Why? Because things which occur around the time of a planetary station - particularly any planet's turn to retrograde - are often indicators things yet to come.

Speaking of things to come, there is also the fact that Venus' station - and the metaphysical 'movement' created by that station - is not happening in isolation. Venus station on the 4th will, in essence, 'overlap' that of Vesta and Huya on March 7th (through station allowances).

Vesta speaks to service and our commitment to serve something ‘greater’ than our Self (and what it takes to keep those vows). And that its station is occurring in Cancer will tend to refer to things having to do with home, hearth, family, traditions, culture or nation as the 'subject' of that commitment, whether speaking in personal terms or on a 'broader scale' with reference to things like housing markets, immigration or concerns about how/how well our city, town or nation is functioning.
As for Huya, because Huya is a Plutino (an object the orbit of which is governed by Neptune), that means we may be (or may have been) laboring under some illusion of doing good (or 'making it rain,' as we say in Huya-speak) - which may or may not be or have been true. Though only discovered in the year 2000 and not yet extensively studied, Huya's annual cycles (and in particular, its stations) are already being seen to mark moments when efforts made (or not made) become focal, with the measure of our own success being directly tied to what (or whether) we have provided something to others through which they may benefit, with the thing we are giving them needing to have been hard-won (generally at great cost) on our own part.

In other words, as with Venus, at some level Huya also requires us to connect to others. Unlike Venus however - and in keeping with its Neptunian connection - Huya requires that we inspire others to some degree and that we know what we are talking about through personal experience. 

And given Huya's connection to Neptune, we may not know what will inspire others and whether we are inspiring them (or) just undermining our Self except by risking failure and rejection. 

March 6 
As of March 6th, Saturn will move into 27 Sagittarius, which is the current degree of the Galactic Center - the center of our Milky Way galaxy. And once there, Saturn will pretty much park itself at 27 Sagittarius, remaining in there from March 6 through May 7, going retrograde at said degree as part of the process.

That Saturn is starting this off while in a trine to transiting Mars (which is at 27 Aries) suggests some sort of focus on stability, whether that refers to things which are or are not being done, or the idea of ‘stabilizing,’ re-stabilizing, structuring or re-structuring something.

Saturn's north polar hexagon dwarfs moon Mimas (an object 246 miles or
396 kilometers across) at the planet's limb.
(photo credit: NASA, JPL, Caltech, Mar 2013)

Likely to have two very different sorts of manifestations, this Saturn-Galactic Center may involve reflections or promptings which have to do with efforts or contributions which need working on - or this may bring up all sorts of questions of the 'why am I here?' sort. Being that this is Saturn we are talking about, the efforts are personal - though with the Galactic Center and Sagittarius involved, the effects are unlikely to be unique to us (which may just have something to do with what is going on now). Whatever happens, and whatever the focus becomes, fairness, responsibility, the idea of 'earning' and questions of 'coloring outside the lines' and social/societal standards are important now and require our respect, lest we be taken to task for failing to understand some sort of 'limit' beyond which we should not, may not, or are incapable of reaching. 

Because this is occurring the very day after Venus goes into retrograde, there is also an implication that finances or issues which affect financial dealings are involved, particularly where that concerns 'basics,' basic considerations or the ‘nuts and bolts’ of things. Understanding more than one perspective is likely now, and even if we prefer 'our way' (which is likely) we stand to fare better in the long run if we comprehend and are familiar with the fullest extent of merits, detriments and possible consequences where that concerns both the plus and minus of our various aims. 

March 7 
Overlapping all of this (as previously mentioned), Vesta and Huya are going on station as of March 7th. 

Starting with Vesta, in going direct at 20 Cancer (at 9:35 in the morning, UT/+0 time), Vesta is calling upon us to be in touch with our whatever our commitments are - or aren’t - and why we have (or haven’t) made such commitments or taken on responsibilities to others and to our Self. What do such promises represent? What is stirred in us that we would choose or be prompted to make them?

The ancient Roman temple of Vesta still stands in today's Rome
(photo credit: Yellow Cat, September 2009)
Considering the Venus-Saturn-Vesta (Huya) sequence here, at least some of this is likely to concern trust. Can we be trusted, even if just by our Self - and is this why we need to know where in our minds or souls our attitudes and choices truly arise from? Will current priorities or methods benefit us - and if so, when and for how long? How does our 'steadiness' and/or trustworthiness affect our attitudes, and does that work well for us in all situations, some situations or hardly ever? How well does our fidelity to our approach to things serve our greater purposes, aims and commitments - and how does our relationship (or lack thereof) with those outside of our 'circle' or 'community' relate to (or) affect our hopes, aims and efforts?

With the degree of Vesta's station being 20 Cancer, we may be of a mind (at least at the moment) to hold onto or to cling to something which doesn’t work (or) some position which tries to ‘defend’ something unnecessary. Why this is, or what exactly could cause us to take what amounts to an either implausible or cowardly stance with regards to such things will vary widely. Plus we should not be surprised if things are sufficiently stirred up, confused or unclear that we need to go slowly or 'feel our way' through things now, as Vesta going direct as Huya goes retrograde stands to pit questions of what is expected (or which has been promised) against truly knowing better.

Discovered in the year 2000, Trans Neptunian Object (and Plutino) Huya concerns ideas we (theoretically) did not need to know or actively work with until the year 2000 - which is an interesting idea to keep in mind.

So maybe the first question is 'why would that be?'

Named for a Venezuelan rain god and probably destined to become a far more 'popular' astrological object than it is thus far, Huya is a rather perfect metaphysical metaphor in that the ‘tears' we shed in learning tough, hard lessons become a 'rain' which, when shared ('rained’ on) others, becomes a key to their being able to have productive life, which in turn fuels our life and provides for us.

In other words, where Huya is concerned, we profit through providing a lesson (learned at our cost) which allows others to develop and also profit - which is one apt image of the Aquarian Age with its Aquarius rising and Leo Descendant, a pairing which can either be 'we all succeed together' or 'I win, you lose' (or 'elites versus commoners'), depending.

Maybe Huya's discovery means it is time to learn the difference between those poles so that we too can become 'enriched' (sometimes literally) through supporting the needs and struggles of others. 

With Huya going retrograde at 4 Sagittarius, something about the difference between actual weakness/passivity and that nature which is peaceful until prompted to fight with unexpected fury is part of what is being offered or received. What or why that will be being individual, with Venus in retrograde, it would not be unlikely for whatever arises now to be 'unattractive' to us (in some sense) - and that applies whether we are involved, or just some sort of observer or witness.

As any turn to retrograde represents something coming 'to' us (or being considered by us), something about what occurs now is likely to teach us something of value, whether we know it at the moment or we need to come to that conclusion over time. We may even now find out that unbeknownst to us, we have the potential to be or become a 'rainmaker' in the lives of others, somewhere down the line. 

As Vesta is going direct, options and opportunities exist - both those we will need to develop or come to understand better and those which may yet do something about current objectives. A commitment may be needed in order to ‘push’ something forward - or someone (or something) which was ‘promised’ may now be found insufficient or less than acceptable, forcing us to commit to finding a better answer ourselves. And as both Vesta and Huya tend to refer to things and processes of a ‘non-instantaneous’ nature, this may be a ‘check point’ when (with Venus retrograde in Aries) we make assessments and find something 'missing' or not being received (and responded to) as we had anticipated.
Or perhaps this will be when we realize what it will actually take (on our part) to attain some goal. With Venus retrograde in Aries, getting hit with the idea that 'this is going to harder than I thought' is both more likely and more disappointing than usual - which is typically of Venus retrograde as Venus retrograde is (among other things) a time for really getting straight and honest with ourselves about what really matters and where we need to tweak our priorities.

Then again, do we even really know what we want at the moment? Or will we now doubt something is possible – whether for anyone or just us?

With this being the cosmic pebble being tossed into our pond for a few days (until Mars enters Taurus on March 10th) we may also ‘take things personally’ or find something ‘hits’ us in hard in some way, whether that touches on vulnerabilities or calls upon our strengths. With Mars in the highest degrees of Aries, the focus of the next few days is also likely to be is less on who we 'are' than what we (or others) do (and can do) as well, which fits just fine with the Huya need and instinct to be more of the universalist than the personal achiever, receiving our 'due' for what we are, do and provide which enhances the lives of others because it is right and correct without being in the direct service of personal gain

March 10 
When Mars changes signs, the effect tends to be something we feel and embody less than consciously, but rather through the pace of things, a rise or fall in our activity, and the nature of the feelings and motivations get us to do things (or) which result from doing them.

Having been in Aries since late January, we are coming to this point full of personal, first-person motivations. We are arriving at this moment in a mood to feel as we do, do what we want and to aim at what we want ... with some among us having been moved only recently that anything needs 'digging into' or changing in reflection of February's solar eclipse or Venus' turn to retrograde.

Whoever we are and however we come to this date, at least some of our feelings (or orientation towards our feelings) will shift once Mars enters Taurus at 00:35 (UT/+0) on March 10th. After all, Mars entering Taurus is Mars entering a sign which is all about our what we 'have' or possess.

Not going out and getting things, but having them - an idea which is fairly antithetical to Mars as wherever Mars is, that becomes where we initiate or assert something. This is the exact idea behind planets in the sign in detriment or fall where planets are in a sign which is 'all about' attributes diametrically opposed to the nature of the symbol, because Mars' energy has to go somewhere and do something.

And if it can't assert or initiate, what Mars in a sign (or house) of detriment or fall generally does is defend - which means it will defend (or manifest through the sprouting of defensive feelings in us) whether or not there really is a problem.

In fact, Mars in a sign (or house) of fall or detriment will often stir up problems in order to then have something to vent about.

Mars in Taurus (glyph chart)
March 10, 2017 - 00:35 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
 Mars in Taurus (text chart)
March 10, 2017 - 00:35 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
So if I say we are prone to experiencing conflicts under Mars in Taurus, and while that may (is) likely and true, we should not think those problems are exclusively about others - and that goes double for anyone with a natal Mars in Taurus and/or a natal Mars in the 2nd (or) 8th houses.

As for Taurus, like all signs, Taurus has something of a dualistic nature. One side is about the essential quality and task of being comfortable in our own skin and all it takes to do that, from dealing with the phantoms in our minds to providing for our basic physical needs (food, shelter, clothing) to establishing with our Self that we have the ability to take care of that Self on a day to day basis in spite of daily problems big and small, existential or totally common.
With Venus retrograde in Aries, that puts Venus (as the ruler of Taurus) in Mars' sign of rulership - while Mars has just moved into Venus' sign of rulership. This condition (known as 'mutual reception') can be very useful, as it generally indicates a strength of personal convictions. However, seeing as Venus is in retrograde, the real question now may well be how viable, sensible or realistic we are (or have been) being. In light of that, some sort of ‘retreat’ or ‘regression’ or ‘softening’ may now occur, particularly where that concerns results, whether of money, effort or anything else, and these effects are likely to be strongest where something is being 'launched' or otherwise begun.

Delays and problems which arise do not have to be permanent - or even particularly damaging. But they are likely to call on us to ‘give’ more than we had planned to, whether that means providing more by way of resources or support, or simply the need for more patience, effort (labor), or the kind of examination which will require an 'investment' from us before any sort of stability can be (re)established. 

Due to be in Taurus for just about six weeks (Mars moves into Gemini as of April 21st, UT/+0), Mars is entering Taurus in a trine to the North Node (at 3 Virgo) and a sextile the South Node (at 3 Pisces). And that, among other things, represents a ‘narrowing’ of something, whether that manifests as a narrowing of options, the time we have to get things done, resources, resistances ... or just a general ‘thinning’ out of relationships, conversations, aims or interest in attending to various committments. And with this ingress also inconjuncting Black Moon Lilith at 2 Sagittarius, achieving our goals may require of us that we ‘deny’ ourselves something along the way (a fact which is virtually guaranteed no to delight us). Some disagreement or ‘parting of the ways’ (mental or otherwise) may also feature now. And while there is a higher chance than usual that many among us will standing on pride (or) remaining rooted (out of stubbornness or a fear of being the 'odd man out') with Venus in retrograde, none of that is likely to solve any problems, conflicts or indecisiveness.

Known as a time which can either fire or douse motivations, Mars in Taurus emphasis what we want - and want to feel about our Self, with some of those those feelings, attitudes and convictions arising naturally out of who we truly are, and some part of them arising (at least generally) through observing others and thinking we need to have 'that' or be 'like them.'

Under Mars in Taurus, circumstance and instinct matter - often to a mystically indescribable point. It’s a time when we may value some ‘plan’ and when personal ‘instincts' may grow stronger ... but when both our valuations and instincts may be exactly what gets in our way (which should lead us to figure out why, but often doesn't), bringing up unresolved feelings and the kind of frustrations which result from indecision or a desire to 'have it all' (or do it all) when that is plainly impossible.

Put another way, Mars in Taurus requires self worth and confidence, and with Venus (ruler of Taurus) in retrograde, life is bound to find the glitches in our personalities and plans, theoretically giving us the opportunity to find and straighten out whatever is 'kinked' before it gets put to the test.

In operation, such moments are likely to feel a whole lot less than likeable.

Plus there’s also Waterloo to consider here. Due to go direct on the day after Mars enters Taurus, Waterloo’s mere presence in early Cancer is a reference to feelings we connect to something 'tangible' about our life (something we care about, whether positively or negatively) ... and how those feelings now pertain to something not being ‘reached’ or achieved - or even something being 'retreated from,' whether to our benefit or not. 

March 12 
In going direct at 1 Cancer, Waterloo’s turn will occur in sextile to Mars. And with Mars having just entered Taurus, that suggests something of a 3rd harmonic and more or less thoughtful or mental nature. Does this mean we will retreat from something? Will we change our mind about something because something changes or now becomes clear?

With 1 Cancer being known for having something of an open and welcoming nature, and with both objects in early degrees of respective signs, this moment would seem to have some connection with how we (or something we are doing or represent) are being received.

Battle of Waterloo 1815 by Thomas Jones Barker (1815-1882)
But then, this is also the date of a Full Moon occurring at 22 Virgo at 14:55 (or 2:55 in the afternoon) UT/+0 time), which is another suggestion of increasing (or increased) clarity as Full Moons tend to 'highlight' things - whether those things are accomplishments, feelings, situations or anything else.

So what is 22 Virgo said to be about?

Full Moon at 22 Virgo (glyph chart)
March 12, 2017 - 14 55 (UT +0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Full Moon at 22 Virgo (text chart)
March 12, 2017 - 14 55 (UT +0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
In keeping with being a third decan degree (which is to say, a degree between 20 and 29), 22 Virgo is not a strictly 'personal' degree. So we know that whatever it concerns, this is not about us thinking through our we may want to spend our life, but more about what we think OF life - or the life we are currently leading. As for the degree itself, that is known for qualities of non-involvement and sometimes avoidance, either one of which would seem to fit well (or echo) the Waterloo idea of encountering or 'retreating' from something, whether that means luck and good timing are helping us to steer clear of some problem, the 'letting go' of some pursuit, aim, or effort - or some form of defeat we are unlikely to forget any time soon.

Known for being either the epitome of that which inspires and leads the way or the embodyments and expressions of the shallow, insensitive and sometimes crude, at its roots 22 Virgo is said to challenge clarity, thus sometimes producing its more 'extreme' effects as a 'mask' or defense, or because we are simply 'out of touch' (or) sync with others.  Either way, that suggests this Full Moon may well represent something which utterly fails to illuminate some situation for us, or a time when our own willingness to challenge some truth (or that which is clearly true) may lead us to become entangled in something deceptive (or) to ally ourselves with someone of a deceptive nature. Known for being susceptible to conceit, vanity, self-absorption and flattery, the 22 Virgo is associated with also health problems, particularly where there is (or has been) excessive sexual activity (or) too much emphasis the nature of sexuality.

As for the Sun opposing the Moon in this figure, that Sun at 22 Pisces refer to the 'facing' of some ‘emotional state’ (or)  status/situation which we react to emotionally - capturing our attention and thus informing us of some ‘cost’ we are (or have been) unlikely to see/have seen coming ... and which we would probably fall prey to (sometimes even happily) if we saw it coming.

So are we dealing with something which is dazzling but unreal? Something which want to see as real because we are so 'enchanted' by it?

If so, what does our meeting up with some 'Waterloo' moment mean?

With all that noted, one other thing to put a thought to here ... Remember how back on March 6th, we talked about Saturn being in conjunction with the Galactic Center? (I’ll wait here while you look back….) Well, if Saturn and the Galactic Center are at 27 Sagittarius, doesn't that combine with a Full Moon at 22 Pisces (with the Sun at 22 Virgo) to form a t-square?

Indeed it does. 

With Saturn t-squaring this Full Moon, we are all subject to tests and testing moments which will see if we are, or are capable of limiting, eliminating (or) ‘holding' some sort of 'line' or limit (boundary, etcetera). And with all of this coming from the positives and negatives of 27 Sagittarius, that speaks to physical isolation, jealousy, resentment, or actual incapacity on one side ... with the ability to be supportive of genius of an honest, ethical, well-planned and sober-minded forward-looking nature if or where such illumination is seen or found.

And of course 27 Sagittarius (as a third-decan degree) means this is not just 'all about us' - which is probably part of the challenge of the t-square. With Saturn conjunct the Galactic Center, whatever we are encountering, it represents some sort of ‘gateway’ we need to go through - which with Saturn in attendance requires effort, and in particular that kind of effort which we are not the ultimate judge of. (In other words, we don't get to say when we're 'done' or when something is 'perfect.') And with that said (and probably duly groaned over), with Saturn at the apex of a t-square, getting past the idea that the issue of the moment is simply about us (or what we do) may also be/become something of a problem. 

T-squares always refer to something in (or) about life which is ‘in our way’ or ‘holding us’ back. Generally frustrating and of a nature which causes us to take them oh-so very personally, t-squares teach us not do exactly that (focus on our Self) by providing solutions only once we find ways to think, act and formulate choices based not on how things will benefit us ... or what our situation is, but rather in a manner which rises above the personal and sees the greater dynamic and more universal (not strictly personal) manner. 

With this being the last day of Mercury in Pisces and Kalypso in Aquarius, thoughts and conversations may move us to understand where we have, have not (or) where we need to remain dedicated, maintain patience and ‘keep the faith’ while holding to or following through on some form of  ‘universal’ purpose or standard, perhaps becoming an issue of its own. 

March 13 
Once Mercury enters Aries at 9:08 (or 21:08, UT/+0) in the evening of March 13th, the general pace of things, conversation and informational flow is pretty much guaranteed to pick up. However, with Mars in Taurus and Venus in retrograde, content may not be satisfying (or even pleasant) and decisions are unlikely to get made merely because the discussion is had, the argument gets made or the inspiring speech gets delivered. Known for thoughts, assertions and ideas which while highly motivated and inspiring may be either impractical, overly ‘Self’-concerned or simply downright pushy (rude or inconsiderate) Mercury in Aries supports the idea of having our say and speaking our mind, even if there is nothing about this combination which guarantees ours will be the winning idea or the proposal which carries the day.

Hardly the greatest sign of patience, Mercury in Aries may indicate going off 'half-cocked' or starting (doing, saying) something prematurely. And with Kalypso moving into Pisces now, that sort of thing may not play out well, as Kalypso in Pisces speaks to needing to see things through and to care how we are doing things because life is not entirely about us - and about how the things we really care about, we should be patient with, lest we ruin everything by being too hasty or narrow-minded about what really matters in the long run.

Mercury in Aries (glyph chart)
March 13, 2017 - 21 08 (UT +0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Mercury in Aries (text chart)
March 13, 2017 - 21 08 (UT +0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
With Mercury entering Aries in an out-of-sign square to Saturn and the Galactic Center in late Sagittarius, some factor or quality which pertains to of ‘knowing’ (or whether we know) and whether things are being (or have been) done in a thorough, timely, well-balanced and supportive manner. Communications and some decisions may be (or become) difficult now as well, whether because of disagreements or perhaps because there has not yet been any opportunity to think or talk things through.

Known for a feisty and decisive quality often curiously offset by naïveté, under Mercury in Aries people tend to be more willing than usual to speak their mind, which makes this a good time to ask questions (or) when by listening, we can learn a good deal about who someone really is. As part of that, Mercury in Aries can also be a time when arguments are part of some sort of ‘test of strength’ between people - which may be hostile, and then again may be all in the spirit of fun or achievement, such as we might see with members of a debating club or when people participate in things like spelling bees.

The difficulty with Mercury in Aries tends to be that we are so first-person oriented, making this a time when we will tend to not listen, or even resist what someone else says - sometimes simply because they have said it. On the other hand, Mercury in Aries can be a boon for those who are normally shy. 

It all depends on our relationship to ego - our own, that is. Given that, this becomes a good time for self-reflection or counseling as Venus in Aries is often a positive when used as part of a 'self help' effort, providing we don't get into some situation where we are 'over our head’ or ‘out of our depth.’

With Venus retrograde in Aries combining with Mercury in Aries for the next just-under-three-weeks, we are all going to be a little more irritable and touchy, a little more prone to getting tired, hungry and grumpy than usual. We want to accomplish more, and we would really prefer to not be contradicted as we go about our days - all of which may or may not work out for us, as the overall Venus retrograde in Aries 'purpose' (and process) involves stirring up whatever will cause us to understand what in (or about) our own manners, mannerisms, feelings, methods and/or approaches to things and alliances tend to limit some part of our greater potential.

And did I mention how all of this is occurring as Klotho is just about to go retrograde?

March 14 
In being named for one of the three Greek Fates (Klotho, Lachesis and Atropos), asteroid Klotho refers to ‘beginnings,’ the 'making' or 'creating' of something, or 'spinning' or 'twisting' one thing so that it becomes another, as one might think of when wool is 'spun' or twisted into yarn.

In going retrograde at 26 Scorpio, Klotho indicates something of a feeling or emotion-promoting nature pertaining to an interaction or situation where lack of trust has either arisen, or now comes into being in connection with, or because some lack of balance has resulted from an absence of respect, supportive fairness or willingness to understand where our reluctance, unwillingness or inability to be fair or unbiased (balanced) reflects OUR fears - or some feeling of vulnerability.

In other words, this is a moment when we may tend to compensate for feelings of inferiority by trying to appear (or sound, look or act) 'bigger’ or ‘better’ than others.

Considering ambient astrological conditions (read: a lot of reluctance or hesitance due to Venus retrograde with that Venus ruling Mars in Taurus), we would be foolish to think we should expect to love and adore everything in this moment, as anything from the unlikable to the inconvenient to the truly painful may be indicated here. And though some moments will surely just represent new wrinkles in an already rumpled situation, with Klotho specifically going retrograde in Scorpio, recognizing how things are going to affect us (and how we have played a part in bringing us to this pass) is likely to promote regret in some lives, a feeling of ‘release’ in others, and clarification(s) with regards to our effectiveness (pro or con) in the general sense.

Whatever happens now, given the two-day ‘station allowance’ given to stationing objects, this Klotho station also has the honor (if that is what we want to call it) of ‘coloring’ Mercury’s Aries ingress and the stations of Medea and Bali, both of which are set to occur on March 16th. 

Does that mean we are likely to be purposefully 'starting something' now with the intent (or in hopes) of 'stirring' something up?

March 16 
Medea is a figure of obsessiveness and whatever ‘drives us crazy’ (or is driving us crazy) whether literally or figuratively. And since Medea is currently in water sign Cancer, something about our home (or homeland), hearth, family, traditions and 'basic' or 'bedrock' culture is coming into focus

As for the degree of this station (29 Cancer) that is said to indicate difficulties stemming from a lack of internal cohesion or direction. So in combination with Mercury entering first-person-me Aries, it would not be surprising if something about our home, culture, family, or other 'native' consideration causes us to feel put on the spot, arousing some sort of indecision and emotional pressures within.

Medea by Henri Klagman (1868) 

To go with this ‘Medea moment,’ asteroid Bali (happiness, paradise) is also now on station and turning to direct at 7 Leo, adding some sort of need to weigh up options, with choice being between one path which primarily benefits our Self in the short run and another option which takes longer and which will tend to benefit us through the supporting of (or) benefiting of others.

With Venus retrograde and Mercury in Aries, none of this may feels like it 'fits' us - and we may not feel all that inspired by either choice. Will that be the reason for our Medea ‘struggle’ with our Self? That well could be. Then again, with Bali turning to direct motion now, this could also be a time when something clearly points to the need not to get in our own way (or in the way of things which are going on), whatever that may mean. 

March 18 
Continuing on with our Venus retrograde experience of Self, asteroid Apollo will be going direct at 21 Cancer as of March 18th, which means its station allowance will have just been starting as Bali and Medea were on station.

Apollo (courtesy of the Capitoline Museum)
The general idea of asteroid Apollo being ‘truth and enlightenment,’ having Apollo go direct in a degree which indicates pro-active (or even assertive) qualities may have any of a number of meanings, whether we are on the 'learning' (realizing, recognizing) end of things or somehow involved in that being now understood, revealed or otherwise dealt with. And with this station occurring at 21 Cancer, evidently some ‘acceptability factor’ is the focus of things, with judgments tending to be based on preference rather usefulness

Considering Venus retrograde in Aries, might this be some form of resisting being 'pushed' into something? Might choices be (or turn out to be) short sighted? Yes, the might - or this may be when we learn some sort of (Apollo) truth about some previous decision or choice (be it ours or that made by others) and the idea of whether something is 'worth it' or not.

March 20 
One of Earth’s two equinox points, the Sun moving into Aries represents a yearly ‘rebirth’ or ‘rebooting' of our personal consciousness and that ‘awareness’ with which we go through life.

Or at least that’s the theory. 

Sun in Aries (glyph chart)
March 20, 2017 - 10:30 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Sun in Aries (text chart)
March 20, 2017 - 10:30 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Beyond the equinox, with the Sun entering Aries at 10:30 in the morning (UT/+0) on March 20th in a square to the Moon and Saturn at 27 Sagittarius (the degree of the Galactic Center) this moment represents something which arises or gets in our way, challenging some sort of method, idea or choice which with Venus in retrograde is likely to feel more like obligation than opportunity. Moon conjunct Saturn will probably do little to relieve this, as Moon-Saturn conjunctions are an image of our having to deal with responsibilities (or responsibly) from a personal level, whether that is in keeping with or in spite of strong feelings, causing us to question certain priorities. With Jupiter (the ruler of Sagittarius) in opposition to Eris and Uranus in Aries at the moment, whatever we end up doing is likely to teach us many things - those which were intended and otherwise. With Venus in retrograde we may not like what we learn (or) that we need to learn it). We may not recognize the value (or lack of value) in it - or in doing it.

With Pallas at 26 Pisces (and therefore conjunct the Sun’s ingress from behind) something about our perspective or position may tempt us to 'break some rules' in an effort to 'tip the scale' in our own favor.

Wherever the Sun is, it describes (by sign, decan, etcetera) where our general outlook is going to ‘come from’ – which means as the Sun moves from Pisces and into Aries, everything about life (and how we see life) will become less emotional and centered in 'feeling considerations' and more about the activities of our will and imagination. Granted, with there having been a solar eclipse in Pisces, our strength of character and willingness to be honest (or get honest) with our Self about who we really are is still being tested - and that is going to continue. So this Sun in Aries ingress (particularly with Venus in retrograde) is likely to reflect at least a few conflicts, particularly where our ego is vulnerable and in need of healing or realigning.

Some of us are more ready to move ahead than others are at this point, which with Sun and Venus in Aries means there are going to be some conversations about what the most 'productive' thing to do is - which, being as we are likely to each have our own focus means 'what is productive for me' ... which of course could raise a few disagreements. Much of this has to do with questions of reality and 'comfort,' with the need to confront realities forcing us out of various ‘comfort zones’ with regards to ideas and plans going foward.

As an indicator of consciousness, the Sun in Aries describes a generally clear and/or motivated state – if one which may be naive or inexperienced. So we tend to arrive at our yearly month of Sun in Aries in the mood to get something done. This year's Venus retrograde in Aries may change that some, so we may not be as spunky or full of vim and vigor as we usually are this time of year. Or, considering how Mars (the ruler of Aries) is in the fixed sign of Taurus, we may find ourselves feeling sluggish or facing some form of slowdown or delay, particularly where (or if) there is any sort of hesitancy or suspect feelings in the mix.

This is not essentially a soft-hearted combination apart from where our own interests are concerned, so once the Sun is in Aries we can expect some pushiness and demands, whether they get met (or even listened to) or not. Where our efforts are truly about details or maintaining standards and quality, insistence will play well for us. However, where anyone simply holds things up for purposes of power, appearance or in the service of attention or control for the sake of control, things are less likely to turn out well (or) to gain or secure the advantages we seek.

Theoretically, the Sun passing through either of the zodiac’s two equinox points (the Aries and Libra ingress points) are moments which call to our attention where things are ‘in balance’ and where they are not - with the idea being that we will either ‘make the personal effort’ (Aries) or ‘work with (or) through others’ (Libra) to find ways to increase functionality and connection. Quarterly ingress charts often being thought of as an ‘image’ of the quarter’s doing, having Venus retrograde in Aries and Mars in Taurus in this one suggests the focus of our next three months will be on improving personal prospects, positions and options, worldly and personal, with solutions coming at some cost to how we see our Self in regards to others, in keeping with the recent solar eclipse. Maintenance of relationships, particularly as that concerns people and things we are less comfortable with is going to be a challenge - and not all of us are going to conquer those challenges, as we will (in typical human fashion) tend to insist "they are the problem" instead of looking in the mirror.

As everyone is going to experience some level of this, many hurt feelings and annoyed moments entitled ‘why can’t they just say yes to me - just once!’ are going to be felt, spurring more than a few of those discussions, arguments, stand-offs, debates and ultimatums alluded to earlier. Some of us will eventually realize how our issues and our feelings of lack are indeed not about ‘them,’ but some of us will surely remain stuck in emotional quicksand and be acting accordingly.

Once the Sun enters Aries, there will be just over a week’s worth of days when almost every day plays host to an asteroid on station, indicating a series of days (or) some process which serve to ‘modify’ or expand on the Sun in Aries themes. None of these are necessarily 'major' moments unless that particular asteroid is highlighted in your natal chart (or) you are simultaneously experiencing some form of individual transit (progression, etcetera) to your chart - in which case those other influences will like as not shape what happens. But for most of us, once the Sun enters Aries, we can look forward to a week of varying and variable events and moments which add to our days and personal outlooks - and one doubts anyone will be unhappy with that!

March 21 
Given the two-day station allowance concept, the influence of Pax going direct at 1 Leo extends back to the 19th - the day before the Sun entered Aries - and forward to the 23rd, thus overlapping the stations of Maximov and Sphinx yet to come, which among other things suggests 'Pax Effects' - or some 'turn' in the 'state of' or efforts to find, maintain or even disrupt peace (whether physical or mental) may increase or 'grow' in effect rather than decline or decrease after the initial station, as we usually expect.

As for where Pax is going direct, in occurring at 1 Leo (part of Leo’s first decanate, degrees 0-9), lore tells us this station will pertain to (or) manifest as that which stirs, prompts or tests our capacities. Do we have the ability to not be overwhelmed by our own inner emotional determinations, whether positive or negative? Some people do, but others of us react to difficulties - be they defeats or critiques - with outsized protesting, or a need to criticize whoever has criticized us or perhaps defeated us in some contest, or in the efforts to secure some job position.

Are we therefore willing to be flexible? Or will we refuse to budge, even mentally?

The nature of this station being such that it is likely Pax' current station will refer to (or touch on) that we go through as a consequence of someone or something external, especially with Sun, Mercury and Venus (retrograde) all in Aries, this question of personal/internal capacity may well affect reputations. Or it may even arise because of some reputation. Extremes seem also involved here, either those of the moment or those we have gone to (or) experienced in the past. 

Whatever occurs now, it leaves us open to our own vulnerabilities. Does this mean, given Pax' turn to direct, that someone else will use something against us now? It could - and that may occur whether we ‘deserve’ such treatment or not.

March 22 
In also doing its turn to direct in early Leo, Maximov is speaking to some idea or moment which has some effect on the direction we think we are going, and what we think our chances are for 'getting there' or achieving some personal aim.

As for Leo, as Leo is a sign about Self-development (i.e., the developing of our Self and our abilities), whether positive or negative, any station in this degree is likely to touch on how we feel about our Self and our efforts. How do we feel about whatever we are doing? How do others regard us in light of whatever we are doing, and thus revealing about our Self? How do we feel about it when others disagree with our choices or show greater aptitude? Is our instinct to learn from them, or to be defensive because we are concerned about being (or becoming) unliked.

And whatever occurs on a day by day basis, what does that say about us - and are we prepared for others to observe that which we don't want to see or think about in our personal nature?

As for the degree involved here, writings on 2 Leo focus on our reactive qualities and the nature of our responses, specifically to that which is at issue (or) specifically "missing" with it being said that there is a greater chance of success  where (and when) we are (or become) relaxed enough to move forward rather than slowing down or halting things in order to deal with unsubstantiated concerns - be they real, suspected, or entirely imagined.

With Maximov representing a ‘maximum’ or ‘maximal’ effect or influence, things may now rise - or we may need to rise (as the expression goes) 'to the occasion,' whatever that may mean. It may also represent a ‘maximum’ effort, or pushing something (say, a piece of machinery) to, or even beyond tolerance, thereby establishing what the term ‘maximum’ means. 

March 23 
Another day, another station: with Sphinx going direct at 5 Cancer, something comes to us or ‘at’ us from a new or unanticipated angle now requires us to at least take note.

Having a quality of ‘endurance’ or permanence, Sphinx may represent that which lasts, a quality of patience or endurance, or that which has 'always been there' or which we think of as having ‘always been this way‘ - and the very notion of a 'status quo.' In also referring to a specific idea (that of a Sphinx as half man and half lion) this station may refer either to the difference between our 'thoughtful' and 'animalistic' sides, or to how well we deal with our 'animalistic' instincts in causing them to support (not override) our intellectual (thoughtful) capacities.

Plus, when we talk specifically of Greek (as opposed to Egyptian) Sphinxes, there are also wings - so some notion of spirituality, our capacity to 'take flight' in avoidance of reality and/or) some earthly/tangible ‘gap’ between Self and others may well figure at the moment.

Egypt: The Great Sphinx at Giza with the Great Pyramid behind.
 (photo credit: Hamish2k, 2005)
Given all that, next we add in a few more notes on 5 Cancer, a degree which in being early in the sign indicates a focus on our physical Self and what we are doing, which in the case of 5 Cancer is said to present that which is new - or at least new to us, with some of our deepest feelings being touched on, bringing up (or out) how they do (or don’t) work in current contexts and settings. This may 'take us back' or otherwise cause us to draw on (or) act based on things which happened a long time ago - which may or may not be appropriate, given our 'new' situation.

Whatever happens, given everything else going on (Sun in Aries, Venus retrograde, Saturn at the Galactic Center, etcetera), the theme about what we ‘do’ or ‘give’ (historically and at present) may well be/become important, particularly as an indicator of what we are going to contend (or) work with moving forward - and that is likely to require a deal of (Saturn) effort from us, some of which we aren't likely to exactly (Venus retrograde) enjoy, or which will not be 'the way we would do it.'

But that's not all which is happening here on the 23rd as both Medusa and Moskva are about to move from Aries into Taurus, which means the 23rd is also a day when we are going to be doing at least some wrestling with inner feelings of trust - a quality which with both objects at 29 Aries either promises some degree of caution and concern about ‘who has done what’ ... or which draws on the Sphinx element by implying some sort of ‘duration,’ ‘waiting period’ or the requirement that we simply endure.

Does that mean we are trying to avoid something? That we are waiting something out? That we are hoping the cavalry shows up in time? It could mean any of these things as surely as it could also mean we are doing all we can to avoid having to look at our own involvement or culpability in something we would rather not get ‘stuck’ or ‘labeled’ with, as that might tarnish our image - whether such thoughts are based in some actual chance of critique or just an overly self-concerned fantasy.

March 24 
Once Medusa and Moskva move from Aries into Taurus, we are likely to feel things are less mobile, fluid, malleable and pliable - or when we find some dream compromised by our own lack of trust (or possibly, ill will). Apart from that, Moskva in Taurus is likely to manifest either as material concerns or on that which ‘bridges' or fails to bridge some gap, bringing up questions as to the worthiness of something/someone and whether some current situation is likely to sustain us while we concentrate on something else.

As for Medusa, being how Medusa is all about what we don’t want to see in our Self (or) about our life or lifestyle …
... with Medusa’s current position in Taurus speaking to and underscoring the idea that our ‘instincts’ may be (or have been) entirely wrong when identifying the source of some problem (or) just who is (or has) behaved like a ‘monster.’

During Medusa’s transit of Taurus (which will end on May 17th by virtue of Medusa moving on into Gemini), we may be prone to projecting our fears (or the causes of those fears)  onto others, even though the true source of our concerns lies in our own inability to deal with those unsettling inner instincts which on occasion tempt us to do things which end up undermining our own efforts because of insecurities which cause us to question our own luck, judgement, choices - or even our destiny. 

Does it matter that Moskva and Medusa are changing signs just as Ixion, Arachne and Sappho are beginning their own stations? It may not, depending on where these points are in your natal chart. Then again, it may indicate some sort of act, action, choice or ‘exposure’ which takes shape now and which in fairly short order becomes something which in the most general sense asks how clearly we see our Self in light of greater standards and perspectives as a whole ... possibly while (or through) the revelation of unanticipated difficulties. 

March 26 
But what exactly are Arachne, Sappho and Ixion doing? 

Answer: they are all turning from direct to retrograde motion - which may refer to things and feelings which 'ebb,' lessen or 'pull back' ... and which may refer to attributes associated with these points coming together as some form of situational 'stew' in which the idea of all three points are going retrograde representing indications of how whatever happens now is either an experience (or) a response/reaction to whatever comes to now be experienced.

So what is going into this soup of a moment?

With Arachne, something about being involved in something, becoming involved in something, getting entangled with someone or some act or choice which amounts to hunting, stalking or 'wrapping something up' is either occurring - or now becoming a factor in whatever we are facing.

In the Days of Sappho by John William Godward (1904)
As for Sappho, Sappho is an intriguing note - one which is said to be either ‘poetic’ (or) possessed of some sort of ‘universal' feeling or quality, all of which is very much part of (or) related to Arachne as these two points are going retrograde in the same degree, leading us to speculate about the possibility of 'universal entanglement' or something which we are all involved in (or) have been involved or 'entangled' by coming into this time.

As for the joint station degree, that degree being 0 Sagittarius tells us (among other things) that there is some quality of 'starting at zero' or 'newness' involved, with lore on this degree speaking of it as being an energetic which can easily lead to unpleasantries where others do not agree with us (or where we fail to agree with them) with clashes and conflicts arising not merely where people disagree, but also where words fail to match deeds.

Subtlety not (generally) being an early-degree Sagittarian strength (later degrees seem more adept at diplomacy), where disagreements occur, much verbalizing of positions is common, with anything from persuasion to daunting demands being possible - with this understanding that, as this is a turn-to-retrograde station, all these qualities may be what is 'coming home' to us now as we find out such tactics did not (or have not) worked. Questions of our moral and ethical standards may arise here, particularly as those have guided our steps to wherever we stand in this moment, and whether we are (or have been) able to utilize 'tools' properly (whatever the term 'tools' means) also figures now. 

These matters may seem trivial. Or, considering how Ixion is also going retrograde on this date, we may be trying to trivialize something (or escape something by claiming it doesn't matter) because we have violated some sort of 'standard' or 'boundary' (ethical, legal, personal, moral, etcetera) because of our tendency to think (or to be driven to insist) we are entitled to do whatever we want to do - all most often in spite of knowing better.

With the degree of Ixion's station being 26 Sagittarius, there is, in fact, a 'doubling up' on the standard Ixion tendency to claim we are being (or have been) misunderstood. That aside, anyone who makes such a claim is probably setting themselves up for further grief or difficulties, as the Ixion process (told rather dramatically in the myth) assures us that where Ixion is concerned, we - not others - end up paying the full, if eventual price.

And Ixion is not the kind of Plutino anyone should mess with. Where Ixion is concerned, its 'Neptunian effect' (Plutino orbits being regulated by Neptune) mostly concerns our ability to fool ourselves, specifically in that 'pride goeth before the fall' sort of way which so often happens when we decide 'the rules' do not apply to us.

Perhaps you'd rather read the whole of the story...
This combination of influences - in general - would seem to indicate something which ‘stops,’ 'catches up to us,' or otherwise interrupts, negates or disproves some favored or favorite idea, opinion or aim, though the specifics of how this moment are going to vary, given the individuality of natal horoscopes. With Ixion, we have a chance to see where tend to oh-so stubbornly (read: pig-headedly) indulge our Self to the point of undoing, with the unity of Sappho and Arachne tending to say this is not something we are doing in isolation, but rather in groups or collectives of some type - be they small or large. 

One other Ixion nugget: as Ixion is a Plutino, and because its astrological process is Neptunian, whatever illusions or delusions which get triggered or revealed here are likely to come from areas of life where we do not (or have not) dealt with realities in whole. So this collective moment may, in some way, cause us to get mad at our Self. Ixion’s stations can be telling. They can mark 'course corrections' or complete breakdowns where we fail to consider the lives of others on a par with our own, derailing us temporarily - and sometimes even permanently.

In going into retrograde at 26 Sagittarius, Ixion is also doing its 'turnaround' a degree shy of Saturn and the Galactic Center. Apart from all else, that also implies how we are not yet ‘hitting the mark’ or doing that we are capable of, particularly as that pertains to the world in which we live ... Or how it is the (Saturn/GC) 'world' which is now stopping us (or) causing us to reconsider.

Whatever happens now, because for the past few years Ixion's stations have been timing out to be just a couple of days off that of centaur Pholus, what happens now is likely to play out over the next few days (Pholus stations on the 28th). There may even be something of a 'statement-response' quality to these two stations, as both of these points involve (and test) how well balanced we are internally, leading to situations which reveal (most often to us) what that reality actually is as others see or perceive it. Given the timing of Arachne and Sappho’s stations, the social and interactive qualities being ‘stirred up’ by Ixion and 26 Sagittarius are likely to be complicated, with Pholus' impending station indicating a 'playing out' of sensitivities ‘playing out’ over the next few days (at least).

Also ... with Jupiter (which is in retrograde and part of the ongoing grand square) due to perfect its part of the not-so-grand grand ‘squaring’ of Pluto on March 30th, don't be surprised if feelings are more intense than 'expected' today - or if some need takes priority, causing everyone to reassess everything.

At the bottom of all things occurring now is a need to confront how we ‘see’ others, and what that says about us - particularly in terms of who we tend to align with, who we tend to reject - and why we make such choices (that part being entirely about us).

March 28 
Pholus going retrograde on March 28th at 29 Sagittarius speaks to our willingness: it's nature and what causes us to be willing or unwilling ... along with the idea of not just what lies behind any choice to not be fully 'in the game,' but why we would do such a thing along with what happens because we have.

All of this comes from the idea of centaur Pholus choosing not to continue ‘fighting the good fight’ alongside Heracles (Hercules), which since all of myth (and both sides of any given myth) is metaphysically about us speaks to where, why or how we come to favor our more petulent or 'Self-centric' feelings (Pholus) instead of our Heracles strengths. In the story, Pholus chooses to retreat to a cave, isolating himself 'in the dark' - which is a mythic and metaphysical way of referring to those moments when we choose to focus on what we do not know, or where we are 'not in the light' (unenlightened). And considering how, due to being 'in the dark' Pholus either becomes to relaxed or careless as to prick a finger on a poisoned arrow and suffer the inevitable consequences, this myth would seem to say it is through choosing to be unenlightened that we end up killing something off.

But what would that be? On one level, Pholus speaks to the abandoning of the defense of that we know to be wrong, leading to the fairly straightforward concept of Pholus as a penalty for doing something we know we should not do. Yet considering Pholus is a centaur, this is also a very innate test of nature as centaurs are half-horse, half-human figures which can either represent the 'rising above' the animalistic nature and utilizing that strength through human intelligence ... or the domination of human thought by animal instinct, with the second of these choices seldom having worked well for any centaur in any myth.

In other words, wherever we see centaurs in myth - and therefore astrology - we are dealing with the choice to rise above our animal nature, and all it takes to do that. 

And when it comes to Pholus, like fellow centaur Chiron, Pholus represents a place in our character (or) a type of situation we tend to get into which tempts us to lead ourselves astray by abandoning some situation or challenge where we have the possibility of doing some good (or doing well) because things are not 'going our way.' 

With Pholus going retrograde at 29 Sagittarius, there is some urgency or intensity in this moment - as there always is when 29 degrees of any sign is being activated. And considering how the sign is Sagittarius, this may well represent some attempt to convince others - or ourselves - of something. The degree has a reputation for focusing on physicality and the physical nature of things whether through profession or personal preference, with the tendency for estimations and efforts to go awry where insufficiently supported, where choices are being driven by some notion or desire which has not been thoroughly thought through (or) where the stress put on some idea, structure, effort or relationship becomes severe enough to reveal those inner vulnerabilities Pholus tends to exacerbate.

And let's not forget ... all of this is occurring just a few metaphysical inches away from Ixion and Saturn's conjuncting of the Galactic Center - the whole of which describes this general period as one which could become a tripping point, tar paper and/or bank of quicksand in the lives of those who are determined to serve and service their own ideals and egos first, last and consistently, particularly in the absence of technical experience and/or well directed choices.

This tag-team connection between Ixion and Pholus has been with us for over a handful of years now, mirroring and manifesting various forms of societal antagonism and a general rise of ‘us versus them’ (or ‘me versus them’) - with this universal issue over time having attracted various 'pairings' in which both sides end up defeating their own cause. Right now both objects are in Sagittarius, so much of their energy has functioned through all the many standard Sagittarius channels: education, the media, religion, foreigners, that which is new or 'foreign' to us (be it a new food, a new idea or a new culture) and All Things International - from travel to trade to immigration, politics, foreign goods and so on. 

However, with Pholus now stationing at 29 Sagittarius it is time to mention how these two points which represent so many of the ways we all tend to stub our toes (and worse) in life, how they are going to be moving on into Capricorn while still in a transiting – if very slowly weakening – conjunction. 

As this shift occurs, things will get ‘tougher’ (think: less flexible) as times lead to efforts to structure or restructure gains and (at least while Ixion is still in Sagittarius) codify methods, laws and 'rights’ amidst outbreaks of protest and occasional hostility lasting until Ixion moves into Capricorn - an event which will take place on February 24, 2020.

After that, with both objects in Capricorn we can anticipate a long period during which ideas about what is meant by (and the purpose of) status, leadership and achievement will undergo extensive and hard-won revisions.

For the moment, the focus is Pholus going through its station at 29 Sagittarius on the 28th, a feat which is being accompanied by asteroid Photographica (a reference to some ‘image’) is entering Gemini, a combination which sounds much like an invitation to public discourse, many a Selfie and all sorts of events worth watching, recording, or using as a platform - all of which we would probably cheer, were it not for Venus retrograde.

Oh yes, that. Venus retrograde being a time during which others (and life) does not ‘respond’ as we might like (or as we might have expected, predicted, or otherwise have been promised), given Pholus' turn to retrograde motion, this may be when we realize where we went wrong about something - or that we have gone wrong, to begin with. Or we may now be coming to (Photographica) ‘see’ why something didn’t, or is not likely to go as planned or anticipated, all of which may cause us to 'turn over a new leaf' in the interests of being (Photographica) ‘seen’ in a different way by others.

Whatever happens now, it stands to either put things in a new light (or) to trigger a new round of activity, as March 28th is also the date of a 2:58 a.m. (UT/+0) New Moon at 7 Aries - a first decan degree marks this moment, day and date as one when whatever is in our head (or on our mind) connects to the idea of what lies ahead.

New Moon at 7 Aries (glyph chart)
March 28, 2017 - 2:58 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
New Moon at 7 Aries (text chart)
March 28, 2017 - 2:58 a.m. (UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Perhaps in keeping with that ‘it’s all about me’ theory, 7 Aries is described as a degree which motivates us to know the difference between Self and others, often promoting a need, decision (or) choice to act independently ... or to maintain clear (or clearer) boundaries. Also known as a degree which opens us to opportunities to work on our Self, this fire sign New Moon doubles up on the Pholus instinct too, which may simply mark this as a time when we do something on own, or may be when when we do some serious mulling on how we want to proceed (probably once Venus goes direct) in order to do better and be/become more productive.

Some of us will get a good deal done now. However, seeing as the only aspect to this New Moon (speaking in terms of Ptolemaic aspects) is the New Moon's being conjunct Venus (still retrograde) at 3 Aries (with asteroid Hel keeping Venus company), there is also every chance of having to deal with repercussions or the consequences of stances, things done and attitudes taken prior to now. Difficulties arise wherever thoroughness, consistency and/or follow-through are, or have been wanting, with there being every chance we will make things harder on our Self if (or where) we fail to understand why or how our emotional perspective is (or) isn’t acceptable to, or a ‘positive’ in the lives of others.

Being that there is going to be upsurge of Jupiter and Pluto energies about now, wherever matters touch on (Pluto) our unconsciously held convictions and/or desires great changes may occur. Most of these will - in time - tend to cause us to see things more clearly, but where that clarity runs counter to desires or aims, issues of power (or the lack of power) may well arise. 

March 30 
Because Jupiter and Pluto are inching towards ‘perfecting’ the square aspect between them as part of the greater (and ongoing) grand square, this New Moon is likely to trigger problems and struggles, particularly those which pertain to projection and that very human habit of accusing others of our own worst faults (or flaws, if you prefer).

Representing some part(s) of life or personal psyche which in not being fully understood by us becomes something we learn from, about (or) through others, Jupiter's retrograde square to Pluto represents some effort to contain or to  master how some particular idea - or concept of ability, power, aptitude or influence works, with Jupiter's expansive nature coupling with Pluto's intensity to as often run us 'over,' or past some mark or goal as not. Known also for a disinclination to ‘look in the mirror’ or to see conflicts as originating within our Self (the projection tendency is powerful with Pluto-Jupiter contacts), challenges confronted now can be conquered with positive results where (and if) we are willing to see our views - and perhaps even our role in something - in a different light, which with Venus in retrograde may well not seem like such an 'attractive' choice.

Like all squares, this one will call our attention to areas of life which are out of balance (or) call for balance to be employed with regards to some situation which is currently at hand, which with Jupiter's retrograde being positioned in Libra (opposing Venus, Uranus and Eris in Aries) there is something we now stand to learn or gain providing we can get past some compulsion, conviction or desire aimed at, or concerning some external idea, person or situation. In all likelihood some difference between reality and what we want to be true is holding us back, and though there may be nothing wrong with our motives, some fact, factor or  perception needs to be better understood, if for no other reason than to save us time, energy and hard-earned momentum. 

Because Mercury will be moving from Aries into Taurus on the 31st, that also means Mercury will be moving through 29 Aries as this square is being triggered ... and that may raise the chances of reactions, choices and debates or arguments which are the product of frustration, haste or being distracted by something totally apart from the focus of any given discussion.

It doesn't have to, but it might. And since this is just Mercury rolling through successive degrees (with no stations or aspects involved), we do have the option of simply hearing ourselves froth and deciding to wait. Patience is not the top-noted virtue of 29 Aries (or any last degree of any sign!), and with Jupiter squaring Pluto there is likely to be all sorts of reasons to feel compulsive or compelled.

But then, maybe recognizing that is exactly what this moment is about.  

March 31 

Mercury in Taurus (glyph chart)
March 31, 2017 - 17:32 (5:32 p.m., UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
Mercury in Taurus (text chart)
March 31, 2017 - 17:32 (5:32 p.m., UT/+0) - Aries Wheel (Location Not Specific)
With Dionysus moving by direct motion into Aries as Mercury is leaving the Sun and Venus behind by joining Mars in Taurus, some need ebbs or something comes to a 'proper conclusion' as the month comes to its end.

Representing things which we do or embody out of an instinct or need to honor or ‘celebrate’ things we think of as important or ‘sacred’ (at least to us), Dionysus may reference the spiritual, but may just as easily indicate something we do or take on because we ‘owe it to our Self,’ (as we might when stopping to take care of ourselves), or when we focus on doing something which, thought it may not be a 'delight' represents the right and proper thing to do.

Beyond that, once Mercury enters Taurus (at 17:32 or 5:32 p.m., UT/+0) on March 31st, many attitudes and approaches are likely to change. Even those who have excited and gung ho about getting something under way may well hesitate, and some (no doubt), will be moving in the direction of a ‘change of mind’ – whether that means their mind or the idea of changing someone else's mind or thinking. With Venus still in its Aries retrograde, defensiveness and the tendency to be sensitive, ‘touchy’ or even skittish may pose a problem as well. So though we are ready to cheer those ideas (and people) we already agree with, convincing the unconvinced will take tact, calm and the kind of approach which avoids stirring up attitudes, arguments and the kind of deep emotions which come from feelings of invalidation, threat or fear.

As this change of sign will unite Mercury with Mars in Taurus, we may also now see an increase in willingness to participate, help (or) to become more involved, particularly where standing up for (or) taking a stand about things we consider vital and basic are concerned. Whatever happens, seeing as Mercury will go into a Taurus-Aries retrograde during April, things which come to be important now are not only just likely to continue playing out through early May when Mercury goes direct again, with at least a few ideas or facts useful to us getting sorted out during the Mercury 'wash cycle' ... or possibly just after Mercury emerges from retrograde, which is a fairly classic cycle for Mercury.

As for aspects, this ingress has only one significant aspect to speak of, that being Mercury in an out-of-sign trine to Saturn conjuncting the Galactic Center at 27 Sagittarius - which is significant enough! Given Saturn as a symbol of time, reality and earned achievement, this Mercury-Saturn trine suggests some form of ‘getting to work’ or taking something more seriously than we have been prior to now, whatever that may mean on an individual basis. It also suggests either an opportunity which is somewhat difficult to access (or) a reminder of something which remains necessary in spite of preferences, priorities, timetables and that oh-so common human desire to ignore that thing which doesn’t warm the cockles of our heart (or whatever other part of life we tend to favor).

Metaphysics and astrology both teach all things happen for a reason and that unbeknownst to us, things happen when they should ... whether we know that to be a fact or not. Given that idea, this year’s lengthy connection between Saturn and the Galactic Center - an event which occurs every 29-30 years or so - indicates something unique in each life, but a challenge to us all. Saturn at the Galactic Center represents a point in the world when our interests and those of others intersect.

Or when they should - and may well need to.

Saturn requires dedication. It also requires structures and the will to create structures which limit only in order to guide, rewarding all things with timely dispassion, honesty and justice. So with Saturn conjuncting the Galactic Center ('the world') we are going to be measured by who we are, who we have been and how well that is aligned with the needs of the world over time. In occurring in Sagittarius, ethics and ethical thinking are needed in order for achievements to come of what we do, which with connection having begun under Venus’ Aries retrograde indicating the tendency to be or become seriously challenged by what the truth of many situations actually are. With Saturn traversing late Sagittarius there is a general need for the understanding of complicated dynamics, with the pluses and minuses of making, or not making an effort now likely to become more obvious once Saturn reaches its home sign of Capricorn in December 2017.

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So that’s the March 2017 roundup. In the wake of February’s Pisces solar eclipse everyone is in some form of emotionally flux, whatever their feelings may be. Some will be happily ignoring that which is sad while others will be hard at work trying to make something of whatever is at hand. Can we make the best of Mars in Taurus by avoiding its defensive-aggressive extremes? Will we learn to harness Venus in its Aries retrograde as an opportunity through which we work towards rewards yet to come from others by working on our Self? Will we use this rare Saturn-Galactic Center opportunity responsibly, choosing between what we do and do not do both thoughtfully and responsibly as we build our world and future?

Whatever happens, I invite you to check back bright and early next month when on March 29th (at midnight, UT/+0 time) the last of the scheduled monthly posts hits the digital airwaves here at astroPPM.

Maybe we will know more by then.

Or maybe we will still be exploring. It would, after all, be a very Retrograde with Square sort of thing to be doing.
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