Thursday, January 31, 2013

North Node--Map of the Soul

I attempted to read two of Jan Spiller's books on the moon nodes and the thickness of the books deterred me.  However, I was able to look up the north nodes of my family members and my own.  As important as these nodes are, I spend little time on the nodes when I'm reading a chart.  However, I like the idea that the nodes provide a map for our destiny or who our souls chose for us to become in this lifetime.  While the South Node deals with past lives and experience we bring into this life, the North Node provides a mystery as we enter the unknown zone.  We feel more comfortable with South Node activities even if they no longer serve us in this life.  Most of us shy away from the unknown and feel awkward trying out new energies, but in order to succeed on our life path for this time around, we need to venture into the North Node zone.

I've never ventured into a country where I don't speak the language.  It's not that I'm not intrigued by foreign cultures and languages because I am, but as a Cancerian with my Mercury in Cancer, I don't like placing myself in situations outside of my comfort zone.  Oddly, in this life my North Node falls in Cancer and learning self-nurturing and relating to others on an intimate level or even a familial level has caused me to feel like I've ventured into a land where I don't know the language.  Having lived many Capricorn lifetimes where I was either a member of a monastery, a cloistered nun or a business leader, I'm not used to relating to others on an emotional level, or so says my North Node.

Someone with an Aries North Node needs to learn how to speak their truth and become their own authority.  They need to stop playing the diplomat (Libra South Node) and stop trying to please others at their own expense.  Someone with a Sagittarius North Node needs to expand beyond a village mentality and encompass the whole wide world.  They move away from taking care of the details to envisioning the bigger picture.  However, the South Node contains many gifts and talents that we polished over many lifetimes.  And for many people, the North Node will feel like going back to college and starting from scratch with an unfamiliar subject.

When I came up with the idea for this post I heard Diana Ross in my thoughts singing that sad song with the lyrics, "Do you know where you're going to?"  With the North Node, our souls know where we're going, but our consciousness clings to the past.  Another description I come up with is graduating from high school and then venturing into the world of adults where we must learn new skills quickly so we can survive in a world of paying rent, and working paycheck to paycheck.  Sure, we feel frightened at first, but then we get the hang of it.  We must make a conscious effort to groove with our North Node and it's the same for everyone.

Despite the thickness of Jan Spiller's books, I recommend giving them a read so you can familiarize yourself with the lessons of your North Node.  These nodes affect every area of our lives from relationships, career, and health.  The more conscious we become the more the North Node calls to us and I wonder what Joseph Campbell would say about the destiny and quest of the North Node because it many ways embarking on the path of your North Node resembles a hero's journey.  You find your bliss and your purpose once you muster up the courage to walk the path where your North Node leads you.

If you're unfamiliar with the nodes, the North Node resembles an upside down horseshoe with the mouth of the shoe facing downward.  The South Node facing upwards.  I actually keep confusing the symbols for the nodes. They drive me crazy.  Look for the nodes in your natal chart and you will see that they appear in opposite houses and signs.  So if your South Node falls in Capricorn then your North Node is in Cancer at the same degree. Jan Spiller recommends reading the North Node and the North Node for the house that your North Node falls in.  So if you have a Sagittarius North Node in the 12th House, you would also read the North Node for Pisces. Spiller gives equal weight to both North Nodes (the house and the node itself), which just seems like a lot of work for the astrologer.

Here's Your Treasure Map

North Node in Aries--Lesson in this life is to speak up for yourself, become your own authority and have a life independent from family or a partner.  For success embody the strengths of an Aries Sun Sign.  Create balance in your life by honoring yourself first and then taking care of others (no self-sacrificing).

North Node in Taurus--Chill out and smell the roses.  Stop looking over your shoulder and entertaining paranoid thoughts about others.  In this life you learn to trust others, but also use your South Node Scorpio talents for discernment.

North Node in Gemini--In this life you can play more and philosophize less.  No one expects you to act the role of the university professor and your travels will take you closer to home, even if the whole world is on your radar.  Write a book or work as a community radio announcer and get to know your next door neighbors.

North Node in Cancer--Express your emotions and feelings to family members, friends, and partners, but first get in touch with your feelings. Put relationships first before career and refrain from bossing others around like a Mother Superior. Nurturing self and others opens the door to a fulfilling life where the biggest goal revolves around opening the heart chakra.  This is a chicken or un-chicken (for vegans) soup North Node.

North Node in Leo--Audition for the center stage role of your life. You are royalty in drag and you shine when you show up in the spotlight. After too many lives appearing as the detached humanitarian with a cause, your greatest cause in this life is basking in the sunlight and never apologizing for proclaiming yourself as numero uno.

North Node in Virgo--You fell onto the earth straight from the starry cosmos. While you feel like floating through your life in a velvet fog, it's time to ditch the rose-colored Piscean glasses and serve humankind in some way.  With your intuitive gifts you would make an excellent massage therapist or energy healer.  You could also work with animals or get your hands dirty tilling the soil and growing food for your community.  The key word here is service.

North Node in Libra--Ditch the boxing gloves and put away that warrior attitude.  The battle has ended and now you must speak the words of a diplomat. Self-interests won't serve you and your mission now is to balance the scales in partnerships and intimate relationships.

North Node in Scorpio--Stop rolling in the clover. The days of smelling roses has ended and the descent into the underworld can unearth treasures as you embark on the shamanic journey. Stare at taboos with your unflinching gaze, Scorpio North Node, as you explore sexuality, death and rebirth. You came to transform the planet while taking it through the Dark Night of the Soul to a peaceful paradise that awaits on the other side of Truth.

North Node in Sagittarius--Thinking small and paying attention to details won't serve you now.  Expand, expand, expand, your mind and your place of operation. Philosophize and send your arrows straight up into the cosmos.  Long distance exploration, networking with foreigners and teaching in a higher education setting call to you now.  Share your wisdom through teaching.

North Node in Capricorn--Remember that song, "Climb Every Mountain"? Well, your climb might feel lonely, but can you deny the view from the mountaintop? Join a monastery or nunnery, go on a pilgrimage, or run a corporation.  As you embark on this lonely road you learn the true lessons of leadership or maybe in your mountain cave you kiss the hem of God's robe.

North Node in Aquarius--Get over your ego already and take up a cause for the betterment of humanity or the earth's other inhabitants.  Moving away from the Leonine spotlight, you now lead the people through a dusty desert of humanitarian causes.  Think Martin Luther King, Jr., think Gandhi, Mother Theresa or Cesar Chavez. Follow their leads and you find your destiny.

North Node in Pisces--Transcend, transcend, transcend and stop sacrificing yourself on the altar of compassion and martyrdom. You have served the planet lifetime after lifetime, always giving and never receiving. Now sit in meditation and choose your favorite mantra.

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Tips for Surviving Pluto Transits

My heart goes out to anyone with personal planets and even transpersonal planets in the cardinal signs (Libra, Capricorn, Aries, and Cancer) and especially those who were born during the first week of their sign, (the 22nd -29th of a month).  The bad news is you can't avoid squares, oppositions or conjunctions with transiting Pluto and transiting Uranus at this time.  Uranus moves into Taurus in 2019, finally giving relief to people with planets in cardinal signs, but Pluto doesn't move into Aquarius until 2024.  The good news is that both Uranus and Pluto bring much needed transformation to the planet and to individuals with these configurations.

The most challenging planetary aspects/transits are when Pluto squares, opposes or conjuncts the natal Sun, Moon, or Rising sign, in this case they would be placed in either Capricorn, Cancer, Aries or Libra.  The Pluto transit last three years and when the orb is exact, a person can feel as if they have been plunged into hell, or that hell has broken loose in their lives.  How Pluto's energy plays out has to do with the house it's transiting in and any aspects it has with both natal and other transiting planets.  The sky is active and planets are constantly on the move.  And even when you know the house or houses involved with the transit, it's still impossible to predict what sort of drama will play out because Pluto is ruled by Scorpio which deals with the hidden and those things kept far down in our subconscious.  This planet is primal and impulsive.

A few years ago, astronomers and astrologers demoted Pluto from planet to asteroid.  It's as if they didn't want to deal with the chaos and mess Pluto brings to the planet (earth) and I guess they thought they could just sweep Pluto under the carpet; pretend that it wasn't there.  However, if you're going through a Pluto transit, you know that it's impossible to sweep Pluto, much less anything under a rug and pretend it isn't there.  Cleanliness is not one of Pluto's greatest assets.  Think of the analogy of a clogged sewer system and all the muck that comes up, (smells bad too) in order to fix the clog.  Well, there's a lot of muck we buried in our subconscious, mostly during our childhood when we didn't have the wherewithal to handle those emotions at that time.

I think for women, we had to hide certain emotions, such as rage, especially with my generation and older generations that weren't seen as ladylike.  We were expected to play the role of nice girl, and take care of other people's needs, while stuffing our own.  Ever wonder why so many women have weight problems?  We were told to look nice and play this role, be seen, but not heard, yeah, even with my generation (I was born in the 1960s).  So much for women's liberation.  Well, now Pluto is helping us to get in touch with our true feminine power which at this point resembles an outraged Kali. See, our parents should have just let us throw that tantrum at age two instead of letting the rage build and build into volcanic activity.  With Pluto lurking around in the subconscious this rage now comes up for healing and clearing.  Denying it's there won't help and in fact, we can no longer deny that it's there. 

Men going through a Pluto transit also have to deal with stuffing their emotions, mainly grief and sometimes inner rage that is tearing them apart.  Telling boys that they can't cry when they're hurt either emotionally or physically, is asking for trouble down the road.  If a man doesn't learn how to express all of his emotions, then he represses too many of them.  This could lead to escapism, violent behavior (to hide his vulnerability), or cold detachment (such as the bachelor who uses women, but feels nothing for them).  Remember, Pluto and Scorpio has a tendency or a weakness of appearing icy cold.  And ice kings didn't start out as cold and unfeeling reptilians.

So here comes Pluto to unblock, unlock, release, transform and transmute patterns, beliefs, emotions, and all that crap we cling to.  We need to do this housecleaning anyway, but Pluto transits are painful and we do experience great loss and I liken a Pluto transit to a long and drawn out initiation.  Think of the bat totems and initiations of Meso-America/Latin America where the initiates are taken into a dark cave filled with bats.  Or think about the totem animals of Panther/Jaguar or Vulture, which is about purging everything that never worked and no longer worked.  Pluto knocks out the guard rails or any defenses we have secured into place.  We are left standing naked feeling vulnerable and exposed.  We find ourselves stripped of everything we thought we needed to survive.  Think of all those families who lost their homes and lived in cars, if they had a car to live in.  Think of all the people who recently divorced.  Think of people who have lost their health and their lives under Pluto transits.  And I'm not saying this to frighten anyone.  Courage is needed now.

Practicing gentleness with our selves and self-love are crucial ingredients to reaching the other side of a Pluto transit.  Eating healthy, going with the flow and letting go of anything that comes up now that needs release.  Finding a life coach or therapist to work with (who understands astrology) can relieve the tension and fear that surface.  Take flower essences such as the Bach Flower Remedies (Rescue Remedy) comes to mind.  Take a yoga, meditation or Tai Chi class.  Change your diet and eliminate all unhealthy foods, give up alcohol, sugar and caffeine which will just agitate you now.  If you have an addiction, de-tox and get professional help.  Get a medical check up especially with the parts of the body ruled by Scorpio (sexual organs, colon).  Don't go through these transits alone.  It's crucial that you find support, especially when you experience losses.

While I support positive thinking and feeling joy, when a person is experiencing a challenging Pluto transit (square, opposition, conjunction), it's time to clean house (the subconscious).  Those issues you buried deep inside come up now for you to transmute and release.  But don't make the mistake of holding on to these old hurts and go over them like a groove in a record.  When the issues come up, deal with them, and be done with them.  Don't re-dramatize your situation (Scorpio loves drama), but don't deny your issues or your shadows now.  The key word is transmute energy.  And by transmuting energy, you actually find your authentic self.  You reclaim your power and like Persephone you rise back up the earth as a changed magical being.  And if you're Capricorn, it will be another 240 years before Pluto transits in Capricorn again.

In fact, as you go through the Pluto transits read and re-read the Persephone myth, while focusing on the arrival of spring.  I'm thinking of the words of Michel LeGrand's song, "You must Believe in Spring".  And if you want to consult with an astrologer who is currently experiencing multiple Pluto transits, I'm available in Bellingham, Washington.  Visit my website

Friday, January 18, 2013

His Pluto is on my Venus--Synastry Charts

Before I start allowing this post to flow through me, I send out a huge thank you to all of you visiting this new blog.  I appreciate your traffic and comments.  The feeling of connecting to others through writing is important to me.  After all, my natal chart is half in the feeling water element with powerful Mercury and Neptune energies.

When I first learned about synastry charts over 10 years ago, I fell in love with the concept.  When I was in my 20s, my friends and I erroneously thought that relationships were solely based on the couple's Sun Signs.  I read and re-read Linda Goodman's "Love Signs" like it was an astrology bible.  The book proved entertaining and I could quickly eliminate any men who has Sun Signs in Air or Fire, but of course, those were exactly the men I dated.  When these relationships didn't work out, I said, "See, Linda was right. What a goddess!"  Then as I became a serious student of astrology (even though I still considered astrology a hobby), I started studying charts and realizing quickly the intricate depths of an individual.  And oh, what stories these charts could tell!

I read several books on synastry charts, but Stephen Forrest's "Sky Mates" is the one I remember most and I re-read it again a few months ago.  Of course, synastry charts represent only one astrological tool, even if it proves insightful into the workings of two individuals coming together as a couple.  And the best way to view these charts is as a transformational tool since people rarely come together as rigid and unchanging beings.  Often, we meet partners just so we will learn and specific lesson and eliminate limiting thoughts, beliefs, and fears.  Not that I recommend abusive relationships, but even those situations can eventually bring empowerment and deep healing.  No use chastising someone who knew better but couldn't resist the attraction of an abusive partner.  Especially, if the relationship eventually brought courage and the ability to say no to the person who found them self in the victim role and even to the abuser who rehabilitated his or her life.

Sometimes people of different age gaps end up in relationships or different lifestyles or alternative lifestyles.  Only the higher beings know the reason or logic behind these intermingling of souls.  Stephen Arroyo (in the book I mentioned in the last post), discussed synastry charts in one chapter of the book, while focusing mainly on the outer planets intraspects with the other person's personal planets and ascendant.  Certainly, this approach makes the astrologer's job easier and more streamline.  For people of the same generation, Pluto conjunct Pluto or Neptune conjunct Neptune isn't news.  These slow moving planets have cycles of 12 to 20 years.  Pluto conjunct Venus or conjunct Mars carries more weight.  People within a 2-year range of each other could experience their Saturn returns around the same time, and people born during the same year, definitely will.  There are advantages with relationships that have a considerable age gap, though a 20+ year age gap is pushing it.

So let's look briefly at the trans formative outer planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) and their interactions with personal planets.  When these big guys show up in a synastry chart what are they communicating to the couple?

Uranus brings change, excitement, instability, and an electrified feeling.  It feels like a genius with a lightening bolt walked into the room.  If some one's Uranus conjuncts someone's Venus or Mars, these people would feel instantly attracted to each other and most likely met under unusual circumstances.  I imagine it's the same for the other personal planets.  However, if the Moon is involved so are exploring emotions.  The person with the intraspect Moon will want to explore emotions and long for security with the Uranus intraspect person.  However, the Uranus person will feel that the Moon person is too clingy and prefer to do something exciting together and even prefer more space in the relationship.  We can compare this to Linda Goodman's description of Sun Signs Cancer and Aquarius.

If the Uranus opposes the Moon in the synastry chart, then at least the signs in which the planets fall in are complimentary even if they are opposite.  A square bring a lot of conflicting energy since the planets fall in elements that don't compliment each other, such as water and fire, or earth and air.  But wouldn't it be interesting if Uranus fell in the sign of Cancer and the Moon in the sign of Aquarius? Would this bring ease to the people involved? Would they feel a greater empathy for the other? I don't know.  Show me a real couple with this scenario and let me interview them.

And even though we are using the Moon and Uranus as examples, we also need to look at the houses where the other person's planets are deposited and then the aspects between houses in and between both charts.  If I didn't find this process fun, I would say this is a heck of a lot of work!  Once we have Uranus aspects and intraspects (aspects between the two people's planets) sorted out, then we look at Pluto in each of the charts and its intraspects with each other's personal planets.  However, as Stephen Arroyo has pointed out, Pluto is not an easy guy to figure out because much of Pluto's energies are hidden below the surface in the subconscious.  Arroyo mentions that it helps to know the couple beforehand in deciphering the Pluto intraspects in the charts.

However, if we see Pluto conjunct some one's Venus or square some one's Mars, we are given our first clues.  At this point, we interact with the couple by asking deep probing questions and I would rather leave that for psychologists than go there myself.  Pluto lingers in dangerous and even forbidden territory, though under the right conditions acts like a goldmine.  So much of what keeps couples stuck are unconscious urges and impulses that neither person understands.  Pluto is hardly logical, at least not in the material sense.  And an astrologer could easily react to Pluto intraspects in a negative way, like a kid who thinks everything he doesn't understand is gross, especially anything that's taboo, or sexual, or about death or birth.  They turn their nose up, "ooh, gross!" as if a skunk just walked into the room and sprayed everything.  While Uranus can feel nerve-wracking, Pluto lurks around in the corners leering at people. No wonder people want to shoo him away.

Neptune brings a dreamy, sometimes unrealistic quality to a relationship.  Arroyo mentioned that this planet's conjunctions with other planets provide a more flowing aspect, with Mars the only exception to the rule.  Squares bring more energies, oppositions could bring complimentary energies, but someone with Neptune in Virgo opposing someone with Venus in Pisces could provide some bitter battles.  The Neptune in Virgo person will already have the Pisces-Virgo energy, but feel in conflict with self doubt, criticism, and an illusion of perfectionism which they could project on their Venus in Pisces partner who is more concerned about the aesthetics of the relationship and possibly lean towards escapism through drugs, wine, food, shopping, or who knows what else.

On the other hand, this couple could make good music and art together, provided that they ground their creative ideas with some Virgo logic.  Virgo also brings analytical thought, communication skills and a sense of groundedness to the relationship, and maybe a sense of purity.  The Virgo energy would also set up the daily routine so that the Piscean ideal can manifest.  This is just one example of Neptune's role in a synastry chart.  For time sake, I can't go into every personal planet combination, houses, configurations, etc...Nor do I want to.

Synastry charts offer couples maps that provide them with the best routes to take in their relationship.  These charts should never be used to prognoses whether or not a relationship should or could work out.  I also think it's best to only provide these charts for clients who are devoted to their spiritual evolution and who are serious about astrology.  Otherwise, it would feel like a waste of time stroking egos of people who only want to hear that they're soul mates and are going to go live in a castle in Southern France.  The astrologer in turn can show the couple the best routes on the map, places where they'll most likely detour and other places they would be best not to visit.

As much as I enjoy giving synastry readings, I haven't given many.  This is an area I would like to explore in the future.  If any of you have stories to share about working with synastry charts or advice, please contact me or leave a comment.  Thank you.

Depending on my availability, I give Skype sessions or produce MP3 overviews with a written report which I e-mail to clients. Please check out my services page for details. Visit my website at

Thank you for your visit.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Taking it up an Octave with Uranus, Neptune & Pluto

In the past two weeks, we have explored the lower and higher octaves of the personal planets and the trans personal planets.  This week, we will explore the octaves of the most mysterious planets of all, the outer planets. In his 1978 classic, "Astrology, Karma & Transformation," astrologer Stephen Arroyo mentions that these planets don't only act as generational markers, but also reveal the deep psychology of individuals.  However, according to Arroyo, Pluto delves so deeply into the subconscious that it's nearly impossible to predict a Pluto transit in an individual chart.

Having experienced transiting Pluto opposing my Sun for the past two plus years and using my AC as a launching pad for underworld exploration has at times felt as unbearable as sitting in a dentist's chair with a drill grinding away at a tooth.  I have never had a problem with shamanic initiation, archetypes or fulfilling the requirements of the hero's journey, as described by the late Joseph Campbell, at least not in theory, but when Pluto makes significant aspects in a chart such as conjuncting the natal Sun, Moon or Ascension or Mid heaven, watch out.  The saying by Nietzsche comes to mind, "If it doesn't kill you, it makes you stronger."  And with Jaguar Energy (in working with totem and power animals), the losses we experience are replaced by something even greater.  That in a nutshell describes a significant Pluto transit.

We need to look at the sign the outer planet occupies, the element (water, earth, fire, and air) as well as the quality (mutable, fixed, or cardinal) and of course, the placement in an individual chart.  Angular houses have a stronger emphasis because they represent the four cardinal signs, four main areas of our lives (personal, home, partnerships and career) and these are the points that usher in the four seasons, when we observe equinoxes and solstices.  However, when Pluto arrives in its house (the 8th) or Neptune in the 12th or Uranus in the 11th, we need to pay careful attention.  Or if Neptune arrives in Pisces, Uranus in Aquarius or Pluto in Scorpio (which has all happened in my lifetime), we need to watch closely the generations born during those times as well as, any shifts cultural and otherwise on the planet.

At this time the only outer planet that has come home to roost is Neptune in the sign of Pisces.  So instead of going in order from Uranus to Neptune to Pluto, let's start with the octaves of Pisces. And I hope you are not tired by now of me waxing on about Neptune.  There's so much talk among astrologers and the fear-driven public about Pluto and Uranus, that I'm giving Neptune more airtime.  We are at a crossroads spiritually-speaking on the planet and some of Neptune's far out ideas actually seem logical in uncanny ways.  I think the concept of creating our own reality falls under Neptune's gaze because of the use of creative visualization, meditation, and pivoting our thoughts from our worries, fears and problems to more pleasurable thoughts, sometimes referred to as escapism or wishful thinking.  Yet, Neptune, unlike Uranus or Pluto, takes the path of least resistance.  Neptune doesn't blow anything up like Pluto or create drama in the form of riots like Uranus.  Perhaps, this is why Neptune appeals to my sensibilities because I'm not into volcanic activity or steam rising from the heads of angry mobs.  But the steam part I suppose is Neptune's contribution.

The highest octave of Neptune is compassion.  Similar to its opposite sign, Virgo, Pisceans/Neptune longs to serve humanity in some way.  And at the same time, Neptune wants to get lost in a spiritual fog, merge with everything, and lose itself in universal bliss.  The higher octave of Neptune is activated through dance, meditation, yoga, Tai Chi, taking the canoe out, snorkeling, whale watching, listening to or performing music, watching movies, and through creative visualization.  And all of these activities seem glamorous to Neptune who sees the bright blue dolphins diving in sun-sparkled water and rainbows appearing on the horizon.

As a child, I knew nothing about Neptune or astrology charts, but I found myself attracted to a Neptune instrument, flute. When I played flute (for 6 years), I lost myself in the instrument's sweet tones.  I didn't know at the time, that listening to and playing music landed me in Neptune territory, but when I played the flute, I experienced my first spiritual epiphanies of Oneness and Unity, even if I didn't know it at that time.  I also had a fascination with fish, whales and other marine life, loved the smell of the sea and any stories of people getting lost at sea or finding home within the sea would have fascinated me, I'm certain.

I believe that children experience the higher octave of Neptune when they pretend, play, and use their imagination.  They experience Neptune's higher octave when they watch movies with stories suitable for their young minds and listen to music also suited for their young minds.  I think it's important to introduce children to Neptune's higher octaves by encouraging music lessons and creative pursuits.  I would even go as far as to teach children some kind of meditation and I encourage ecological visits to the ocean or a large body of water where they can observe marine life.

Otherwise, these children will come to understand the lower octave of Neptune which includes addictions, negative escapism such as avoidance or taken on a victim role as opposed to taking responsibility or chronic lying.  Our culture (US) has fallen under a Neptune fog and mainly experiences the lower octave when music is used as a tool for manipulation of the masses, alcohol is promoted for leisurely uses, even recreation (instead of taking a canoe out to a lake or learning meditation), cigarette addiction and recreational drugs (a concept I can't understand) also fall under the lower octave of Neptune.  Following religious gurus blindly, getting caught up in Hollywood glamour or over shopping to fit a glamorous ideal also fall under the lower octave of Neptune.  You can see where this leads.

When we tap into the higher octave of Neptune, we give up the alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, glamour, illusions, delusions, and castles in the sky.  We find ourselves spiritually and become our own guru by mastering the spiritual concepts of our Higher Selves.  When we align ourselves with the higher octave of Neptune, I believe we reach enlightenment.  We merge into Oneness of all that is or God and find our secure footing, not through the validation of others, but in our own hearts, knowing that all hearts are connected.  Wouldn't that be a nice place to arrive?  To get there, you must give up the addictions and modes of escapism--not so easy in societies that promote escapism, and uses religions as tools of manipulation and control.

That brings me to Uranus, the planet that rebels against manipulation and control, especially of large groups or communities.  Uranus in many ways represents the equalizer and is the Communist planet in the lot, in the sense that it promotes detached humanitarianism.  After all, Uranus is ruled by Aquarius, a detached and analytical air sign, which often represents geniuses, revolutionaries, and innovators.  When we talk of the Aquarian Age, we must consider the planet Uranus.

The higher octave of Uranus brings equality, justice, humanitarian efforts, fair trade cooperatives, grassroots anything, fair distribution of food, human rights, animal rights, and innovations that create a Utopian society.  Uranus never favors the elite and will side with the so-called 99 percent any day, mainly out of principle.  But the lower octave of Uranus comes through in rebellion, violent protests, riots, overthrowing dictators (only to be replaced by a worst dictator with a different ideology), and Uranus lower octave doesn't see humans as individuals but as a collective.  To Uranus, the individual rights are less important that group rights and with Uranus in Aries currently, we have seen a ruthless side of Uranus as it levels the playing field. 

Finally, let's end with the god of the underworld, Pluto.  It's hard to imagine (while I'm under the influence of a powerful Pluto transit until autumn of 2013) higher octaves of Pluto.  However, anyone who has endured an opposition or conjunction of Pluto to their Sun, Moon, AC or Mid heaven experiences reclamation of personal power, after experiences intense dark night of the soul for three years.  Pluto's higher octave brings transformation, personal power, and the ability to uncover secrets as well as, solve mysteries.  Anyone undergoing a major Pluto transit needs to read the myth about Persephone and her descent into the underworld as well as, her arrival upon earth every spring.

I described a Pluto transit to the Sun to someone today (not that she had any interest, but...), and I mentioned that a Pluto conjunctions or opposition feels like the dead of winter and then when the transit ends, spring blossoms upon the earth. It's like walking through a long dark tunnel and then seeing the glimmer of cherry blossoms and rabbits hopping in a meadow in the distance.  Release from the clutches of Pluto can only bring a sigh of relief.

The lower octave of Pluto is represented in control, manipulation through fear, a descent into madness, psychotic disorders that wreak havoc on society, the irrational mind, irrational emotions, feeling like a volcano ready to explode, rumblings in the deep subconscious spewing to the surface, loss of jobs, marriages, friendships, even home.  The lower octave of Pluto is represented in nuclear power, expensive medical technology that might cause more harm than good in the form of radiation, nuclear fall out and nuclear waste, natural disasters, and total disruption of life on earth.  The lower octave is darkness and more darkness with a focus on darkness.  You get the point.

As astrologers we acknowledge both the lower and higher octaves of the planets.  We don't lump planets into good and bad categories, realizing that each planet has energies that can transform our lives when we harness them in a matter that works for us.  People who came here to evolve spiritually have active outer planets in their natal chart (many aspects and prominent signs and house placement).  Some of us came to shift energy on the planet, but first, we must reach for the higher octaves of all ten planets.

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Friday, January 4, 2013

Taking it up an Octave--Jupiter & Saturn

Last week we gazed at the personal planets while exploring the lower and higher octaves.  This week we will look at the two transpersonal planets and next week, we will tame the outer planets. I'll remember to bring my circus whip (lol). While a lot of astrologers and people following astrology have commented on Pluto and Uranus transits, Jupiter and Saturn have much to add to this planetary conversation.

As I listen to Stevie Wonder's classic hits in the background, I think about benevolent Jupiter.  True this planet and the rulers Sagittarius and Pisces garnered a stellar reputation over the centuries.  People get excited when Jupiter returns in their charts or conjuncts their Sun or other personal planets because Jupiter usually comes bearing gifts.  Saturn has not garnered a favorable reputation since this planet does not help anyone win the lottery and anything that happens under this planet's influence comes with maturity, hard work, and more hard work.  However, Jupiter's gifts come and go quickly, with a Jupiter return bringing a few days of Lady Luck.  Whereas, Saturn returns bring lessons and initiations that when navigated well, have lasting effects for years, if not decades.

Could we say that humans are basically lazy or prefer to take the easier paved road than to hack our way through the brush to create a new path?  Don't get me wrong, I love when Jupiter comes bearing gifts, but I find that those gifts fade quickly and then I'm left wanting.  I have a stronger Saturn signature in my chart than I do a Jupiter signature, even if Jupiter falls in Taurus in my Fourth House.  I know that I'll have a nice and comfy home during my retirement years.  And in the meantime, Saturn builds structure in my life, helps me to create schedules that work, and to set goals so that I'm not sitting on a couch crunching on potato chips and waiting for Jupiter to return. 

Jupiter's higher octave brings us luck, expansion (not always a good thing), idealism, spiritual insights (especially if you consider that both Pisces and Sagittarius represent spirituality and idealism), and we can feel like we're on top of the world, if not just on top of our game.  People seem friendlier when we resonate with the higher octave and synchronicity flows.

When we resonate with the lower octave of Jupiter, food tastes so good that we grow addicted to it.  There is a tendency to gamble or acquire addictive habits.  Waistlines expand and weight becomes a problem as we enjoy "the good life" too much.  The lower octave of Jupiter could bring too much adventure or laziness (get off the couch already).  The lower octave of Jupiter exaggerates, engages in heated debates and fills up with hot air.  The lower octave sounds dogmatic and leans towards over religiosity.  It's my way or the highway becomes the motto of Jupiter's lower octave or he adopts a pie-in-the-sky approach and doesn't notice the nuclear fallout landing on his head.

Saturn's higher octave shows up in attractive bone structure (think Marlene Dietrich, a Capricorn), strong and long bones (Capricorn rising folks), maturity, wisdom that defies years, and the willingness to work hard to achieve goals.  While many people feel that Capricorns and Saturn lack a sense of humor, they're missing out on an odd sense of humor, but humor nonetheless.  The higher octave of Saturn knows how to get things done and people can count on you when you resonate with Saturn's higher octave.  Dependable, responsible, and conscientious describe this higher octave.

Saturn's lower octave hangs on to outdated structure and form that no longer serves them or society.  The lower octave places too much emphasis on finances, and status.  We could connect this lower octave with the outdated patriarchal system that stomps on the rights of women, children, workers, non-humans and the earth.  This lower octave takes on the business-as-usual approach and if it's good for business, then it's good for them.  The lower octave comes off as cold, detached, and lacks compassion.  You will also find workaholics hanging out in Saturn's lower octave along with control freaks, sadomasochists (especially if the Virgo, Scorpio, or Pluto are also involved), and dictatorships.  Saturn's lower octave is represented by transnational corporations that mistreat its workforce and lies to the public in pursuit of a profit.

At the moment, both Saturn and Jupiter are involved in a yod with Pluto.  Saturn is in Scorpio (Pluto's sign) and Pluto is in Capricorn (Saturn's sign) and Jupiter in it's opposite sign, Gemini forms an inconjunct with Pluto and Saturn.  Personally, since all of this is happening around 8 degrees Capricorn (Cancer), Gemini (Sagittarius) and Scorpio (Taurus), my own natal chart resembles a Christmas tree all lit up.  I feel exhausted since Saturn is suffocating my natal Mars in Gemini while Jupiter boosts my Mars.  Tug-of-wars are fun, no?  Meanwhile, Pluto conjuncts my AC and opposes my Sun/Mercury.  Oh, whoopee!

Look in your natal chart to see where you have planets at 7 to 10 degrees in Capricorn, Cancer, Gemini, Sagittarius, Taurus and Scorpio.  These areas of your chart will feel the effects of the yod I mentioned earlier.  Look for the current Saturn, Pluto, and Jupiter transits in your chart as well.  Are any of these transiting planets aspecting your natal planets? Especially look for any transits happening in a angular house (1, 4, 7 or 10) because you will feel these transits more strongly than if they fell in the other 8 houses.  Though I wouldn't discount the power house (8th) or the 12th house which ends a planets cyclic journey and brings on endings in different areas of a person's life.

If you're in the Bellingham, Washington area, feel free to set up a consultation with me.  I am available to do consultations via e-mail too with a payment through PayPal at  You can contact me through (click on the Whole Astrology tab).