Thursday, August 29, 2013

Virgo--Even if it's not broken, allow me to fix it...

Virgo, Wikipedia
When the Sun and Mercury moved into Virgo on August 22 and 23, we might have experienced a lesson in humility.  No matter our life work or life path, suddenly we took stock of needed improvements.  Perhaps when the Sun and Mercury traveled through Leo we felt a grandiose sense of self and our unlimited talents spewed forth like an overactive volcano.  We felt confident, courageous and even generous, but then when the Sun and Mercury moved into Virgo, the sun suddenly hid behind a cloud and our view seemed hazy.

Virgo energy wants to fix and perfect, even when something isn't broken yet because Virgo energy causes us to worry about all the things that could go wrong.  For authors that means going over that text that flowed so easily and readily during the Leo cycle and cutting out anything that doesn't belong in the text.  Virgo energy asks us to look at our values and beliefs while holding them up to scrutiny.  Virgo energy cleans house, organizes and prepares for the colder months ahead.  Virgo energy concludes the summer season and prepares us for the changes that occur during the autumn season.  With Virgo energy it's time to balance the books, pay outstanding bills, fix any broken appliances as well as, clear up any communication that went haywire during the fun summer months.

Since Virgo is polar opposite to Pisces, Virgo delves into its spiritual side and looks for practical ways to serve the world.  This might involve stepping away from the world and going off on a pilgrimage or participating in a silent retreat to find answers within.  But Virgo can also roll up the sleeves and get involved in healing work, helping the neighbors get their lives together, or participating with a charity.  Since Virgo rules Mercury along with Gemini, the Virgo energy might wish to get involved with communication (online, radio, or print).  Or Virgo might wish to work behind the scenes proofreading and editing copy.

If your Sun, Rising Sign or Moon is in Virgo, you are here to perfect and fix what is broken and even what isn't broken yet.  If you are a member of the Pluto in Virgo Generation and also have Uranus in Virgo (in 1968, Jupiter, Pluto and Uranus were all in Virgo) then you want to join others of your generation and come up with practical solutions to solving world problems. This could be inventions of new software, or renewable energy technologies.  This could also include learning new ways of farming sustainably in urban environments.  Virgos have solutions and these solutions work.

Look for the House in your chart with Virgo on the cusp and that's where you want to fix and perfect. This is where you desire to serve the Greater Good, this is where you strive for pure thoughts and clarity.  Virgo is represented by the maiden or virgin, but this could also imply that we need to return to our own place of innocence before we became jaded, cynical, and nit-picky.  The Virgo sector of our chart is also where we need space to breathe, think and just be.  For instance if we have Virgo in the Fourth House we will want to live alone and work at home undisturbed.  We would also want a clean, organized, and efficient home and settle for nothing less than what meets our ideals.

Virgo in the 8th House would imply that we delve into our subconscious mind to clean up and clear unworkable patterns and beliefs.  We would criticize those sources or entities that provide for us financially whether that support comes from a spouse, family member or the government.  This Virgo placement also wants to do everything for him or herself and work hard, even martyr oneself to succeed financially.  This Virgo placement plays guilt games saying things, "Do I have to do everything myself?"  "I will give you my last dollar, but..." And we end up feeling guilty and resentful here as the recipient and giver of this guilt.

Harvest, photo Patricia Herlevi
Virgo has a bad reputation that I believe is undeserved.  Sunny Leo with his fun and creative spirit is a hard act to follow! And here comes the maiden-nurse-hermit onto the scene carrying a clipboard of everything that's wrong with the world and needs fixing.  However, Virgo also brings with her a refreshing flush of innocence like the child coming indoors with rose cheeks and twigs in her hair after romping around in nature.  Virgo is wholesome and teaches us how to eat better diets, clean up our homes and organize our lives.  Whereas Pisces gets lost in drug-induced fog or escapes into impossible dreams, Virgo brings the practical know-how approach by achieving a dream step by step and plan by plan.  Virgo offers us a map and secure footing.  And while our last days of summer take on a sober quality, at least we know we are heading in the right direction.

Ah, one other thing to watch out for now, is self-judgment and self-criticism.  Remember that self-judgment only leads to self-negation and loathing.  Be easy on yourself now.  Fix what needs fixing and leave the rest alone.  And accept yourself as a divine work-in-progress.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Astrology Alert--Grand Cardinal Cross (Aug 23 - 31)

Venus, Wikipedia
If you woke up feeling in a rage and didn't know why or have been noticing a lot of media coverage about violence against women or children, we are experiencing a transiting Grand Cardinal Cross with Venus in Libra, Uranus in Aries, Jupiter in Cancer and Pluto in Capricorn.  We have become used the Pluto/Uranus square and when Jupiter rolled into Cancer in June, we anticipated the T-Square with Jupiter/Pluto/Uranus, but now a fourth player Venus in Libra form the fourth corner.

(While some astrologers will place a positive spin on this Cross, I'm personally finding the energies horrendous and extremely challenging.  Just look at world events to give you an idea of the power of destruction represented by this Cross.  But of course after destruction comes recreation and hopefully greater balance).

A Grand Cross features oppositions and squares and anyone with Cardinal Sign planets (Capricorn, Cancer, Aries, and Libra) at 7 to 12 degrees will definitely feel the tension presented by these planets. Sure we could just endure the tension and anger that eats away at our minds and bodies or we can exercise vigorously (dance, go for a run, a long walk, or a workout that releases tension), spend as much time alone as possible to process your emotions (which will seem irrational and could come out as explosive bursts with Uranus and Pluto involved). Jupiter will exaggerate circumstances and blow arguments and disagreements out of portion and these arguments will most likely start from differences in religious and philosophical beliefs.  Since Venus is in Libra, women are targets for violent acts so it's best not to play any passive-aggressive games at this time, stay away from dangerous people or people who experience quick anger.  Now is not a time to engage in philosophical debates and it really is best to keep to oneself until this square passes.  And yet, we will still deal with the T-Square with Jupiter, Pluto and Uranus then later this fall, Mars moves into Libra.

Perhaps, what we experience now is a rehearsal for more challenging times ahead.  Stay safe.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Fiery Dance of Egos (planets in Leo)

If you have been feeling burned out on all the drama happening around you look no further than Mercury, Sun, Ceres and Vesta's transits through Leo.  While this doesn't compare to actual stelliums we experienced with Pisces, Aries, Gemini and Cancer in previous months, we're still feeling leonine power, fire and drama at this time.  It's as Shakespeare once proclaimed that the world is indeed a stage, only we wish some folks would get off the stage already. Your 15 minutes of Warhol fame have ended.  I recall the Gong Show from the 1970s where a bad act could actually be booed and removed from the stage.  Enough already!

On August 19, a day before the Full Moon in Aquarius, Mercury and the asteroid Vesta formed an exact conjunction in Leo at 20 degrees (and we're still feeling this as I write this post) and further along at another 6 degrees Ceres conjuncting the Sun (our identity) in Leo.  During the Full Moon, we experienced a wide orb of two asteroids (Ceres and Vesta) and the Sun and Mercury opposing the detached Moon in the Water Bearer's sign (Aquarius).  Now, this could have showed up in a number of ways all involving women (Ceres and Vesta), communications (Mercury) and identity/ego, but also the heart-center (Sun) contrasting with a detached brotherhood/sisterhood or humanitarian efforts coming more from a place of pragmatism rather than emotions/feelings/compassion.  I'm certainly seeing more angry women than ever speaking if not shouting their truth.  And while all this is happening, I read about Saint Hildegard of Bingen and I'm now reading about St. Joan of Arc.  Vesta does represent virgins and who is more virginal than nuns and French maidens of the medieval era?

With Vesta we also want to keep our passions alive and burning despite what's going on in the outer world.  Remember that the vestal virgins remained indoors where they kept the vestal fires burning at a sacrifice to themselves for a greater cause.  And isn't this also what the Full Moon in Aquarius asks of all of us, women and men.  What do we need to sacrifice now that isn't serving our passion or anyone else around us?  Ceres conjunct Sun in Leo also refers directly back to self and in this case the harvesting of our grains through acts of self-love.  Ceres too speaks of sacrifice since she was the Goddess who lost her daughter who was abducted by Hades thus bringing the darker and barren months upon the earth (fall and winter).  In one astrology blog post I read the astrologer mentioned both a light and dark side of Ceres which I guess reflects on the grieving mother who takes her suffering out on the world and the mother who reunites with her daughter during the first light of spring.  Ceres is the Harvest Goddess and she carries many names depending on which part of Europe she is worshiped--many faces of the same Goddess.

So as we harvest this sense of self, we also must speak our truth no matter how much that hurts physically or our reputation (Pluto in Capricorn square Uranus in Aries) and then Jupiter in Cancer expands upon the idea of not only how each of us nourishes ourselves but with the Aquarius Full Moon how we can come together as a collective humanity and nourish everyone on the planet. While Leo energy brings us back to our self, Aquarius energy detaches from our personal needs and looks to the greater cause.  This represents a revolutionary moon, but a revolution without a vision of true brotherhood or sisterhood just leads to another military dictatorship as we have seen in Egypt and other countries around the world.  Pluto in Capricorn has ambitious willfulness that only serves those in autocratic positions of power, and yet, each of us has personal power on the level of Spirit if we can detach from our egos.  If each of us can see the mirror of the world reflected back to us, when we point the finger at other controllers and manipulators we need to find those tendencies in ourselves and heal them.

Goddess Ceres, Wikipedia
Meanwhile, the Full Moon's Ruling planet Uranus wears Aries battle gear and is fired up over just about everything these days.  Uranus in Aries is the angry child, the rebellious teen, the adult who can't grow up and get his or her life together and takes it out on everyone else.  And in recent decades, we saw the emergence of "the victim" in all his many guises, from cancer survivor to war refugee, to exiled community to the kid on drugs who claims it's his parents' fault (as if his parents forced him to use meth).  And now we have reached a point where none of us wants to deal with our own or anyone else' drama.  Some of us are ready to inspire and create solutions and stop over analyzing the problems that we face, as if over analyzing solves anything.  If it did, we would be better off, wouldn't we?

Meanwhile Venus transits in her own sign of diplomacy, grace and charm, Libra.  However, towards the end of August, Venus battles with Uranus (who she opposes, enough of war already, peace brother) and squares Pluto, you had better treat us women better.  We see this the week of the week beginning with August 26.  Early we saw Venus inconjunct Neptune in Pisces and we were plied with images of Hollywood actresses and other glamorous women, but what's new Magoo?   On the 15th of August, Venus formed an inconjunct with Chiron and we came up with alternative ways to define beauty that would bring us healing.  Or maybe we just got caught up in the Hollywood images that Neptune brought us earlier.  Everything looks better on celluloid, not be confused with cellulite which Hollywood stars never seem to have.

Vesta, Wikipedia
So to end this long post, I conclude with with the Leo/Aquarius polarity playing out, Sun=identity/ego/heart center, Mercury=communication, Ceres =harvest, and Vesta=keeping the passions burning verses the Aquarius Moon representing Brother/Sisterhood and detaching to see the entire picture.  People have roared with their indignities but fail to witness humanitarian efforts already underway on the planet.  The Aquarius Moon asks us to change our perception and revolutionize not the planet, but our own thoughts and let go of the cheap drama.  When Ceres, Vesta, Sun (August 22) and Mercury (August 23) move into Virgo, we will need to let go of the drama and become practical. We must bring our communication skills to the table while borrowing on Neptune's compassion.  In fact, to bring more Neptune healing energy, I recommend cleansing and charging amethyst with compassion and carrying the gemstone around in your pocket or on a pendant/necklace.

Connecting with the Higher Octave of Leo which represents heart-centeredness and generosity will bring a boost of light into our lives.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Approaching Harvest Time (personal planets playing switch-eroo signs)

Photo by Patricia Herlevi
As we enter mid-August, we can look forward to some changes of energy with the inner planets.  The Sun transits into Virgo on August 23 and our time in the spotlight or limelight ends leading us to think more about our life purpose and how we can serve the planet in some way.  Kids are thinking about going back to school, and university students soak in the last rays of summer before heading back to their studies.  The Sun in Virgo can either leaves us feeling nit-picky or we find something in our life to perfect, usually our health or work routine.  We might overwork during this time.

A day after the Sun moves into Virgo, Mercury follows so we could hear more complaints and nags than usual from ourselves and others.  Again, we want to perfect, but this time in the realm of communication since Virgo is a co-ruler of Mercury.  Our nerves might feel frazzled from all that socializing when Mercury and the Sun were dancing in Leo.  And now it's time to get back to business as usual.  Watch how you communicate with others, and make an effort not to come across as overly realistic or glum.  Now is a time of service and looking at ways we can serve the world better.

Ooh, la, la, Venus moves into Libra on August 17 bringing the glamor and sparkle back into our lives.  According to Mark Husson during his Power Peek Hour show (Hay House Radio) for this week, "when Venus goes into Libra suddenly people care what they look like."  Time to head to the beauty salon, wear nice clothing and no walking around in sweats and slippers in public, folks!  This Venus is diplomatic and she flits around from social gathering to social gathering.  She matches people up and the talk is about partnership and contracts.  And if it wasn't for the line-up of other planets (mainly Uranus and Pluto), it would be a good time for people to tie the knot.  At least get your haircut and polish your shoes.

photo by Patricia Herlevi
Last, but not least, Mars moves out of Cancer and into Leo.  We can take a breather from all those sentiments we've been feeling and acting out.  Maybe the tears of anguish will stop now too, but let's be careful that we don't start acting like we have returned to our terrible twos.  Now, is a good time to set boundaries, but not a good time to cross our arms over our chest and refuse what needs to get done.  Remember Leo is a fixed sign and just like Taurus, Scorpio, and Aquarius, Leos are stubborn.  If there's nothing in it for them, then they're out the door or won't get their butts out of the hammock.  Couple Leo with the Aries energy of Mars and we could have a lot of tantrums on our hands from children and adults.  So please refrain from whining, "I don't wanna!"  And you probably won't want to do a lot of things, but the Sun and Mercury and Virgo tell us that we have to and that it's our time to serve the planet and serve ourselves a plate of humble pie.

News for the outer planets--none of the outer planets are changing signs at this time (no surprises there).  Saturn and Jupiter are moving forward while Pluto, Uranus and Neptune continue to retrograde for the remainder of the summer. Pluto goes direct around the Equinox (September 20).  Other than that, expect status quo from the outer planets with planets in the 2 to 12 degree feeling the brunt of Neptune, Uranus and Pluto transits.  Enjoy the rest of your summer if you're in the Northern Hemisphere and your winter if you're in the southern half.  Most people reading this blog are from the Northern Hemisphere with a few from Down Under.

I give consultations in the Bellingham, Washington area.  Canadians are welcome.  Contact me at wholemusicexp at gmail dot com

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Mercury--One-word wonder or gift of gab

The Magician represents Mercury
We all communicate from grunts, to one-word responses, to the vehement NO! of a toddler going through his terrible two period to soapbox rants and the charming diplomacy.  Our Mercury placement by sign and house determines our communication style, as well as, our intellect and learning style.  Mercury represents the messenger in the Zodiac and when Mercury goes retrograde we end up shooting the messenger.  Consider that all the planets (except the luminaries Sun and Moon) retrograde. Mars retrogrades every two years for two months, sometimes staying up to four months in a single sign as it did the summer of 2005 in Taurus.  The outer planets spend 4 to 6 months of the year retrograde, and yet most people only notice when Mercury goes retrograde and they curse poor Quick Silver.

Mercury is a small, quick planet that revolves closely around the Sun.  It's close to Venus too. And I can't tell you why this planet represents communication, the media, the messenger-reporter, education and intellect, but it does.  And when you learn the sign that your best friend or spouse's Mercury lands in and read the description of their communication style, you slap the side of your head and laugh--"No, wonder he communicates with bullish grunts or no wonder she's passive-aggressive and always tells me I look nice when I really look like crap! The spouse has his Mercury in Taurus and the friend has her Mercury in Libra.  And it's a good thing to know people's communication styles based on their Mercury placement because you can't change how someone communicates even if you send them to a university and force them to major in communications.  The strong silent type will remain the strong silent type, the ranter will continue to rally against societal ills and the Virgo Mercury will continue to nitpick.  Get used to it.

So let's go around the Zodiac (as I listen to the Cuban classic, Guantanamara belted out by the late Celia Cruz) and visit the 12 styles of communication.  Find Mercury in your natal chart by sign and house.  Then check for aspects to other planets because this adds shades to your Mercury. Many people have Mercury conjunct Sun and when this happens the person is subjective identifying strongly with his or her thoughts.  Most people I know have their Sun and Mercury in the same sign with a 5 degree or less orb, but occasionally I view a chart with the Sun and Mercury in different signs, as when Mercury is retrograde.

When Mercury falls in Aries or the First House (ruled by Aries), the native with this Mercury speaks with confidence (even faked confidence) and bravado.  This person thinks he or she should come first in your life and they come first in their own lives.  They speak with enthusiasm laced with naivety as they rush out the door with their head way out in front of their body, as if they would smash their ram horns through the door.  I exaggerate.  This person however, speaks from a place of strength and courage--a true warrior.

When Mercury falls in Taurus or the Second House, the native with this placement either speaks in grunts, one-word responses or possesses the Venusian charm of Audrey Hepburn and speaks in a sensual voice about sensational experiences.  Mercury in Taurus falls must fall in the charts of public speakers, radio hosts with suave voices, and vocalists since Taurus rules the throat and Mercury rules communication.  So stop grunting already and speak up please.

When Mercury falls into the co-ruler Gemini or the Third House, you can't get this native to shut up.  If they're not talking to you, they're talking to them self or to the non-stop radio or television.  This native changes his or her mind a lot, can argue both sides of an issue (confusing the person who they debate with), recite the daily news to you like a reporter. Oh, and they love reporting even in the form of gossip about this or that neighbor. And similar to Mercury in Virgo (the other co-ruler of this planet), Mercury in Gemini can nag us to death.  The dark side of Mercury in Gemini is the complainer, but if this Mercury experiences any oppositions with planets in Sagittarius, at least the complaints are laced in satire.   My advice to Mercury in Gemini write a newspaper column, blog or set up your own soapbox in Trafalgar Square.

When Mercury falls into Cancer or the Fourth House, this native conveys moods and emotions dripping with tears. You will need to bring a hanky when you meet one of these folks when they're in a sad and sentimental mood. They want you to feel what they feel or if you feel sad or disappointed, they want to mother you until you feel better.   They use the statement, "I feel" and have no problem conveying how they feel when communicating to you, unless they confuse your emotions with their own.  Think of Meryl Streep winning an Oscar in another tragic movie and you get the drift.

When Mercury falls in Leo, the native speaks with enthusiasm about creative and heartfelt things.  He or she speaks like the king or queen that they are and they steal the spotlight so please forgive them.  They roar when they're are angry and act as demanding as a two-year old when they don't get their way or you forget to validate them.  Oh, but they can also boost your confidence with kind and generous words.  Like a stage mother they might just push you into the spotlight.

When Mercury falls in Virgo or the Sixth House, this native has little time for gab because he or she has work to do, or a to-do list to ramble through or a problem to fix.  This poor harried soul is rushing the kids off to soccer practice while multitasking with their social networks, that is if he or she isn't the hermit (leave-me-alone-in-my-cave type).  Mercury in Virgo means well but they tend to nag, nitpick and perfect you.  This is because they feel insecure about their own abilities which they project on to you.

When Mercury falls in Libra or the Seventh House, the talk is about us, about partnership and getting along.  This Mercury oozes charm, has a lovely speaking voice (Venus) and can sway you to their side of the argument without ever raising their voice. They aim for balance, peace, and diplomacy. Think elegant and sophisticated Parisian.

When Mercury falls in Scorpio or the Eighth House expect more conspiracy theory and dark secrets to emerge.  These folks like to appear on the fringe and invisible so that they can spy on you. They are spies in the house of love and share resources (or other people's resources).  They won't divulge their tax return or income to you, but they might tell you all about their sex life and exploits.  Expect communication of a darker variety.  Goth anyone?

When Mercury falls in Sagittarius or the Ninth House, we all let out a sigh of relief and then join the native in laughter as we enjoy belly laughs and rolling in hysterics on the floor.  These are the comedians who reveal satire on every corner and area of life on the planet.  Even their religious humor is ribald and their foreigner humor off color, but we forgive these folks as they philosophies into the wee hours while you sit on a plane beside them.  They won't dwell on details as they expand upon the bigger picture.

When Mercury falls in Capricorn or the Tenth House, these natives speak in ambitious terms and serious tones, but look closely and you will find some black dog humor underneath those stooped shoulders.  These folks are serious, conservative and quiet leaders. While they enjoy winning arguments and being right, they can also hide in solitude while sporting the humility of a monk. Mercury in Capricorn don't enjoy socializing and they usually have some work to do somewhere or networking with the right people as they climb their way to the top of the big old mountain.

When Mercury falls in Aquarius or the Eleventh House (yeah, I'm almost to the end of this long post), this native seems at odds with everyone else in the room. They're the only one wearing a suit in a room full of hippies or the only hippie hanging out with Wall Street types. They use shocking words and provocative language on purpose or they electrify a crowd with their speech, not through passion or enthusiasm, but through a humanitarian spirit.  They speak of brotherhood and sisterhood and invite you to the next peace rally.  They care even if their air sign qualities give them a certain detachment and everyone's their friend, not just you.

When Mercury falls in Pisces or the Twelfth House, the native either comes across as wishy washy and as slippery as a freshly caught salmon or speaks like a dolphin (joking).  These folks speak about dreams, and visions as if everyone experiences them.  They speak about far out things and slip in and out of dimensions, sometimes channeling the words they speak to you.  They drift in and out of conversations, going off on tangents and leaving the other person feeling as lost as them.  They have big dreams, but they don't know how to articulate those dreams unless they have a well-placed Mercury (such as in the Third or Tenth houses). Too bad they're swimming in two opposite directions.  The world could really use these folks' compassion and grace.

If you are in the Bellingham area and you want to know about the reporter in your natal chart complete with aspects, house placement, sign placement and current transits, set up a consultation with me at wholemusicexp at 

Friday, August 9, 2013

Outer Planet Transits--No one is off the hook

You probably have heard your astrologically-savvy friends or colleagues grumble about their Pluto/Uranus transits and thought, "I'm so fortunate, I'm not experiencing those planets."  However, even when these planets don't aspect our natal planets with oppositions, conjunctions or squares, we could still experience minor aspects to these planets, for instance if your Sun is in Leo or if any of your planets are in Leo around 7 to 12 degrees, you will experience an inconjunct with Pluto in Capricorn at this time, which feels like a big yield sign in front of your face.  Of course, your planets in Leo would also be experiencing a Fire Trine with Uranus in Aries, which would make you want to move forward even more, but at least keep your inspiration alive.

Or you might say my Sun and many of my planets are in Scorpio and not Capricorn, Cancer, Aries or Libra, and you still wouldn't get off the hook as far as transpersonal planet transits go.  You would experience a sextile between your Scorpio planets and Pluto in Capricorn at some point, but you would also experience an inconjunct (that yield sign in your face) with Uranus in Aries and there is that pesky business about Saturn in Scorpio for another year+.  When transiting Saturn conjuncts the Natal Sun, Moon, or other personal planets, life feels like a real grind and you just feel old.  With transiting Saturn conjunct Sun especially, you can feel bone weary and feel like you're living a life of hard knocks, but really what's happening is Saturn is preparing you for future transits such as the square or opposition to your Sun.

And even if you don't have any of the above aspects, the transpersonal planets are transiting somewhere in your chart.  These big guys (Pluto, Neptune, and Uranus) are occupying houses in your chart and each of the houses as its own themes and lessons that these planets trigger.  And I doubt there are any charts that have no planets with hard angle aspects to any of the transpersonal planets.  But for now, let's just look at a few examples of these planets (I refer to them as big guys, but you could also call them teachers), in various houses.

If Neptune falls into the Eighth House, then Pluto would fall in your Sixth House and Uranus in your Ninth House unless you have one of those strange charts with intercepted houses.  For the sake of this article let's use and Equal House chart.  Well, the Sixth House carries the themes of daily work, your daily routine, your health routine, your health, small pets, your home to some extent, especially if you work from your home and this house represents our service to others.

With Pluto in the Sixth House you could experience health problems, especially with those parts of the body represented by Scorpio/Pluto or Virgo which rules the Sixth House.  So you could have problems with your sex organs, bowel, intestines caused by stress from your daily routine.  With Pluto in the Sixth House you are asked to sacrifice those things in your routine that harm your health and prevent you from giving your service to others.  You will also need to give up a need for perfectionism and other nerve-wracking behaviors and strive for better communication with your loved ones and colleagues.

Now, combine all of that with transiting Neptune (in the sign of Pisces) in Scorpio's House (8th), which represents taxes, sex, psychology, other people's resources, soul mates or deeper partnerships.  Neptune dissolves what it touches, leaves us in the fog or wanting to merge with a higher power.  We either experience blind faith or lack of faith.  You could be forced to deal with any addictions or psychological hangups you have now which would free you to receive financial resources from others.  Or if you're not careful and you're living on blind faith (not acting realistic), you could find yourself cut off from a financial source of others.  You could be getting yourself further into debt thinking an inheritance will pay off your debt and then your inheritance never comes because of secret enemies who you erroneously thought were your allies.  Remember you're getting a double dose of Neptune when this planet is in its own sign, Pisces.

Alternately, you could uncover information by being vigilant at this time since the 8th House also represents detectives and secrets that are revealed, but with Neptune here try not to get lost in personal conspiracy theories or thinking the government or some authority is out to get you.  However, with Uranus in Aries in the Ninth House which represents you might want some sudden event, at least subconsciously, to break up your daily routine and liberate you.  Perhaps, you long to travel, but feel stuck in this idea of serving your friends, family, or community so you overwork yourself while dreaming of beaches in Hawaii or the lavender fields of Provence, France. And Neptune in the 8th House has you day dreaming too, but more likely about where you will come up with the financial resources to travel the world.

We can't predict what Uranus might do.  However, when you experience the ongoing square with Pluto in your Sixth, some how in the next few years, you will either purposefully change your daily routine, make improvements to your health, etc or Uranus will toss in the monkey wrench, so some sudden event, accident, or illness could stop you in your tracks and move you into the realm of contemplation.  Meaning, you'll suddenly have to stop whatever you're doing that is affecting your health adversely or not serving your soul's needs so that you can find your true calling in this life.

So pay attention to Neptune's dreams in the 8th House (keep a dream journal), work with an intuitive life coach and get in touch with the deepest parts of your soul which you have ignored because you have been stuck in your mundane daily routine for too long.  And so you see, these transpersonal planets are transforming your life and it is best to pay attention.

Suppose you have Pluto in your Fourth House, Neptune in the Sixth House and Uranus in the Seventh House.  If you are not following your soul path and taking care of your spiritual needs and if you are not paying attention to the subtle and not so subtle signs cropping up in your life, you will most likely experience some kind of disruption in the home or a business around partnership.  With Neptune transiting in the Sixth House, have you not seen the forest through the trees in regard to your daily work and office situation? Have you forgotten to pay attention to your health, have you eaten a healthy diet, have you placed trust where you shouldn't or have you worked yourself so hard that you have ignored the needs of your partner?

Neither Pluto or Uranus will put up with anything in your life that curbs your freedom or lacks integrity.  With Neptune transiting in the Sixth House it is easy to deceive ourselves around working too hard and then having too many drinks after work to relieve stress or just falling so deeply into a Neptune fog (Pisces rules the 12th House which is opposite of the 6th House ruled by Virgo).  If you're life has fallen out of balance, you will feel the repercussion of that when Uranus and Pluto form perfect squares highlighting your Fourth and Seventh Houses (Home, Mother, Partnerships, Contracts, Legal Matters).  So if you actually have the planets transiting in these houses in your chart, pay attention.

The good news is that these planets bring transformation of one kind or another and they all bring the transformation in different ways.  Not only that, we need to look at all the aspects and transiting planets in a chart to get the whole picture.  Perhaps, you have a well-placed transiting Venus and Jupiter in your chart to off-set the Pluto-Uranus Square.  And the current sextile between transiting Saturn and Pluto brings us the level of maturity we need to navigate these planetary waters.  But here is a rule of thumb to remember: Neptune dissolves what it touches, Uranus disrupts or blows up, and Pluto transforms in such a way, that we cannot return to our old life (it no longer exist).  Think of Pluto as a volcanic eruption or a nuclear bomb explosion that alters the landscape of your soul. No one on the planet is going to escape the transformation and awakening that are offered at this time (these planets will make sure of that).

However, by learning the energies of the planet, learning the themes of the houses, and learning about the aspects of the faster moving planets in our charts, we can at least carry a star map with us.  Each planet asks something different from us. Some offer us holidays in Hawaii with a gorgeous partner and others lock us in cloisters demanding that we learn the lessons.  And there are both sunny and shady parts in everyone's chart.  How can you know the good, if you don't know what you consider bad? How can you know lightness without experiencing darkness? Transformation is not something any of us can avoid.  It's a bumpy ride, but after a while, you cling to your map and you trust your inner guidance. And on the worst days, I recommend pulling out your favorite songs and listening to them on the repeat mode.

Want to know where the outer planets are in your chart? I give consultations in Bellingham, Washington.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Dancin' with Neptune (Neptune in Pisces partnering with other planets)

Neptune is on my mind.  Not only does this planet represent spiritual ascension, but we are all receiving a double-dose of Neptune as the planet transits in Pisces until 2025.  But what happens when Neptune in Pisces conjuncts the other planets?  Do the people with those Neptune conjunctions, experience spiritual breakthroughs or psychological breakdowns? How do we navigate the sometimes choppy waters of Neptune when he represents the vast deepness of an ocean while also offering a wellspring of faith?

I think this depends on the soul's evolution, a person's life circumstances up to this point, and the planet Neptune is conjuncting, but I believe that Neptune transforms the area of the chart where it transits by dissolving belief systems and patterns represented in that part of the chart.  In doing this, Neptune leaves people feeling temporary lost, drifting out to sea, and with no hopes of returning to the same shore. With outer planet transits in general, our lives are transformed in one way or another.  We might find ourselves divorced, widowed unexpectedly, without stable employment, or pursuing a lifelong dream because we feel we have nothing left to lose.  But most importantly outer planets (with their long transits) seem more detached from the outcome and more patient with our transformation.  We're going to get there when we get there and it's most likely not to a destination we originally envisioned.

So let's look at Neptune as this planet conjuncts the Rising Sign, MC, and the other planets in a chart.  These transits last around three years so we have ample time to learn the lessons that come up, and with Neptune, "let go and let God."

When Neptune crosses the Rising Sign, it's transiting out of the 12th house (spirituality, invisibility, transcendence, and all the other situations associated with Pisces and Neptune) into the First House of identity and how other people see us.  We will feel and even come across as wishy-washy, unformed, and we struggle to remain visible in the world.  Remember that the bottom half of a chart is the private sector and the top part of the chart is the public sector.

We might completely dissolve our old self and reinvent ourselves with Neptune in the First House or we might identify with a career that falls under Pisces such as cinema, a healing profession or music.  But we won't act realistically and at this point in the transit we just toy with the idea, visualize what we would like to manifest, and explore our new passion, but privately.  Once Neptune transits into the Third House or conjuncts Mercury, we will take the next action which is to get educated in the area that interests us and communicate to others our visions.

Neptune in the First House is an uncomfortable time where it's hard to bring practicality to a dream or vision.  Teaming up with a Saturn type (in a managerial role) could help in grounding a vision into reality while pointing out the next steps in the process.  How realistic is your dream? How realistic are you about your actual skills and talents? What actions are you taking or are you just talking without acting?  You also need to be careful not to use your glamor to charm others since Neptune in the First House is a bit of an alluring trickster who can promise rainbows and never deliver them.

However, when Neptune is in the 12th and First houses it is a good time to take up a meditation or spiritual practice, take a yoga class or with the proper experience start teaching yoga classes.  This is a time when a person could start feeling more compassionate for him or herself, forgive the bitterness of the past, especially recent experiences when Neptune transited through the 12th House.  This person might have healed addictions during that time, made amends with people she or he hurt in the past and forgiving his or herself for the addiction and situations related to it.  The person could have suffered a mental breakdown, a loss of identity that was tied in with a career or ideal or just the opposite experienced a series of transcendental moments that changed his or her life.

When Neptune conjuncts the Sun, the ego feels as if its melting away and since the ego does not wish to merge or join unity consciousness, it will sabotage any efforts a person with the Neptune Sun conjunction in regard to spiritual pursuits. While the Sun represents a big heart, it also longs to hold the center of attention and here comes Neptune to question that.  Neptune feels like a watery grave to the Sun who just wants to shine, be noticed, and experience love reciprocated.  So here you have a push pull effect of hot and cold; fiery/passionate and spiritually non-attachment.  Neptune wants to teach forgiveness, compassion, and merging into the unknown which feels impersonal to the Sun/ego.

But this could also create a situation where a person seen as a celebrity or guru of some kind teaches true compassion while learning how to express compassion for him or herself first.  Here you have the celebrity yoga instructor touring the international circuit and spreading light, compassion and other spiritual principles.  Here you have the movie maker or musician sharing an epiphany with the world on a grand scale or a big stage with bright lights.  You also find the vegan preaching compassionate eating, and the animal rights advocate who identifies too strongly with her or his cause to the point of alienating others.  One needs to stay grounded with any Neptune conjunction, but with a Neptune transit conjuncting a natal Sun, we need sign posts in the form of other people's reactions to our ideas and actions.

When Neptune conjuncts the Natal Moon, we find ourselves in deeper water and we must wade if not swim through emotions surfacing from our subconscious.  We feel a turbulence, if not tidal wave of beliefs and patterns surfacing that we must question and delete from our minds if these beliefs and patterns don't serve us.  We return to our childhood wounds and question the lessons attached to them and I can attest (since Neptune is transiting on my Moon/Saturn) that we cry a lot in a purging fashion and anything can trigger those tears or old childhood wounds.  We feel compulsive and deeply intuitive.  We read people like books and know their motives, or alternately, we seek ideal partners or people in our lives or project our ideals on to someone as if they were a movie screen. Emotional boundaries dissolve and we just want to surrender, but we need to discern how, when and where we surrender.

When transiting Neptune conjuncts Mercury, we become a spokesperson most likely in the realm of spirituality or we fool ourselves into thinking we are a guru who was born to save the planet.  We might find ourselves attempting communication with whales or dolphins, studying esoteric music practices, or making otherworldly movies to get our message out into the world.  But with a true adept, this conjunction could bring some kind of salvation to the planet and certainly compassion is conveyed in written or spoken word.  For those people who love music, this is a wonderful time to launch a community radio show featuring music or a Blog Talk radio show revolving around spiritual topics.  The key words are: Spirituality, messenger, message, education, and transcendence through communication.

When transiting Neptune conjuncts Mars, we see the spiritual warrior or someone experiencing one spiritual breakthrough after another.  We have lots of physical energy and drive for pursuing yoga, walking pilgrimages, or for spiritual studies.  Our Mars softens even more when the watery planet conjuncts it and here we have someone who is passionate about compassion, darn it.

When transiting Neptune conjuncts Venus, well, think Elizabeth Taylor who was a Pisces sex symbol or a glamorous Hollywood actress.  Here glamor and allure combine with compassion and service to others.  We find that our feminine side wants to use its sex appeal to promote animal rights, raise money for people with AIDS, or to help starving children in Africa.  Beauty becomes the trap as it spins illusions, but beauty also captivates the attention of the populace who we can sway towards a greater cause.

When transiting Neptune conjuncts Jupiter, we think expansive spiritual concepts.  We suddenly find ourselves teaching our life lessons to students, sometimes thousands of students around the world.  This is if we don't have the sudden urge to chuck out our day to day life, sell the house, quit the job and travel the world with just a backpack full of our belongings.  We're not realistic, but we long to surrender to God or whoever we think is in charge of this Grand Scheme we call life.  We feel a calling, synchronicity haunts us, and we search for a deeper meaning through travel, exploring higher education or religion.  We think the answer we seek is somewhere over there instead of in our own hearts.

When Neptune transits Saturn, we feel structure dissolving including a career we worked at for decades. Parents could die, authority figures could lose their grip on our psyches and just like with other Neptune conjunction we feel lost and empty.  We are like the fetus in the womb, still unformed and slowly manifesting into human structure of bones, sinew, etc  We don't break rules, but we watch them dissolve along with all the structure we have ever known and trusted.  We feel unstable and everything changes around us in a surreal fashion.  We experience strange dreams, want to escape into something that brings us comfort or a sense of grounding. We try to return to our old lives, but those lives no longer exists.  And we feel ourselves melting into oblivion.  The good news is once we complete this transit, we have a better idea of who we are and what we want out of life.  We will have forgiven ourselves for our perceived wrongs upon the world.  We now look at the world with maturity, grace and compassion for we know what is possible and what isn't.

If someone was born with Uranus in Pisces, they will experience a transiting Neptune conjunction with their natal Uranus.  This includes people born roughly 84 years ago (April 1919-April 1927, and Nov. 1927-Jan 1928) or for people born between 2003 and 2011 when Neptune transited into Pisces.

We actually experienced a Uranus and Neptune energy exchange when the planets were in mutual reception when Neptune was in Aquarius and Uranus was in Pisces (2003-2011).  We experienced radical and life-altering spiritual experiences, felt like we were on the cusp of the famed Aquarius Age, experienced breakthroughs in the realm of sound healing and music, how music affects the neural pathways of the brain, etc...Children born during this time seemed odd, even alien to us, but came bestowing gifts of genius, especially with technology and all of the arts. Genius wedded heightened intuitive gifts and the world felt electrified, if not just plain far out.

Neptune and Uranus energies from 1919-1927 would have also felt shocking with women in droves demanding their rights, especially to participate in democracy by voting.  Women bobbed their long hair, shortened the hem of their dresses considerably, smoked, led jazz bands in some cases, and this was also the time of breaking prohibition laws.  Life was a party for many until the stock market crash at the end of 1929 when Uranus was transiting in Aries (where it's currently transiting).

I don't have all the research to support this claim but since Pluto and Neptune are slow moving planets (Pluto takes 240 years to travel the Zodiac and Neptune takes 164 years) I doubt any of us will experience a Neptune/Pluto conjunction as a transit or as a Neptune transit to our natal Pluto within our life time.  The last Neptune/Pluto conjunction that occurred was in the 1880s in Gemini (and many of the cities in Washington State and Washington State itself were founded during this time).  I saw another date for 1399 for a Pluto/Neptune conjunction.  And certainly none of us will experience a Pluto or Neptune return during our life time.  No one alive has Pluto in Pisces at this time and only people born between 2011 and 2025 will have Neptune in Pisces.  These children are experiencing Neptune conjunct Neptune and it will be interesting to see how this transpires with this generation over the next few decades.  They will be a spiritual force to be dealt with when they come of age. I'm looking forward to this event.

For those of you interested in history and trends, I encourage you to research historic events in the 1880s and around 1399 to see if you find any themes.  Pluto wasn't discovered until the 1930s but it still would have had an effect on the planets events throughout history.

If you have an interest in Neptune or are familiar with outer planet conjunctions, feel free to leave comments here.  I am especially fond of Neptune and if you're in the Bellingham, Washington area and would like a reading for the outer planets in your chart, you can reach me at wholemusicexp at

Thursday, August 1, 2013

El Camino de Santiago (A Neptune Experience)

Over the years I have read books and articles about El Camino (the pilgrimage route to Santiago, Spain).  While reading The Way of the Stars (Journeys On the Camino De Santiago) by Robert C. Sibley, who walked the route in his fifties, I kept running into Neptune/Pisces themes such as redemption, compassion, forgiveness, transcendence, feet, and religion.  Most of us have heard of this route by now since many famous people such as Paulo Coelho, Shirley MacLaine and Saint Francis of Assisi walked El Camino.

I read in an astrology book not too long ago that Santiago and Galicia are ruled by Pisces and most of the route runs through Galicia and ends in Santiago.  But really a pilgrim can begin the route anywhere in Europe as long as they finish in Santiago. Most people walk the 800 kilometers starting in Southern France near the Pyrenees, walk through Basque country and through Galicia, but there is also a Portugal route.

The reason why I'm mentioning this route and book on an astrology website is because I was struck by Neptune and Pisces working their way through the author's experience. And don't forget the polarity of Pisces is Virgo so there is a sense of servitude, skepticism, discernment, self-inflicted punishment and perfectionism bouncing back between the Pisces compassion, redemption, transcendence, wanting to merge with others, collective experience, losing oneself, spaciness, and intense dreams.  There's a saying that the author mentions in the book that one doesn't walk El Camino, but the road walks the person and leaves enormous impressions.

Life is simplified on the road, a sort traveling monastic living where the person takes care of only his or her basic needs, walking, finding shelter, food, and a shower.  There's the foot problems, mainly blisters, but sometimes broken and sprained ankles.  One can easily get lost of feel lost and are guided by yellow arrows that mark the way, but don't always appear in some spots.  There's mountain climbing involved which falls more under Capricorn as does pushing oneself to the limits.  Pilgrims have mentioned intense dreams and memories that surface especially around songs (Pisces) they heard as children or teenagers.  They sometimes sing these songs on route to ease the boredom or give them strength to keep walking when they have another 10 kilometers to go before the next town and refugio (a type of hostel for pilgrims).

I also noticed that pilgrims tend to drink alcohol (more than they normally would in their mundane lives) which is also ruled by Pisces and Neptune, and takes the edge off of worn out and shivering bodies.  Galicia is also known as the wettest or rainiest region of Spain, and it borders the Atlantic Ocean in sections, its music is important to its culture and has a Neptune quality as well, haunting and mystical.

So I guess what I'm getting at here is that to those who have walked El Camino (millions since the Middle Ages), know the Neptune experience intimately.  They might even have strong Virgo and Pisces elements in their natal charts which draw them to El Camino.  The road calls to prospective pilgrims.  I would imagine that the Rising Sign, Moon or Sun is either in Virgo or Pisces or has aspects to Mercury and Neptune, but especially Neptune.  Sagittarius natives will also find the road appealing because they can set out fancy free, meet foreigners along the route, and pontificate about religion.  They would also enjoy gatherings of pilgrims over a meal and a drink.

On the darker side, since Neptune is involved, a pilgrim can develop an addiction to the road and the walking.  When the experience ends, as in Sibley's book, there's a longing to return to the road or at least a clear and powerful ritual to close the experience.  When Neptune has power over us, we truly want to escape the mundane world because Neptune and Pisces are not comfortable in routine and structure nor does Neptune care about getting head and ambition.  But if we tap into Neptune too much, we lose our footing in the world and this could border on madness. Remember Neptune/Pisces also represents prisons and mental institutions, not to mention hospitals.

The Virgo side of the polarity can also get lost in the experience wanting to serve humanity in some way and is bent on sainthood, as well as, becoming holy and perfect, though Virgo can never live up to its ideal of perfection, which is why Virgos are so critical with themselves and others.  Neptune/Pisces represents the invisible realm such as ghosts and devas of nature.  The author Sibley mentions some supernatural experiences with animals, trees, water, and plants, not to mention rocks.  Neptune opens up new worlds or realms to us, but only if we are in a quiet and still place, as we would be walking 30 miles a day.  When we slow down we feel Neptune most strongly.

Whether you are a Neptune-Type or not, I recommend The Way of the Stars as well as, Paulo Coelho's The Pilgrimage. And if the road calls to you, take it.  From what I've read and heard from my sister who has walked the road four times, the experience is invaluable.  Some people even use it in place of psychological therapy. It could be the most powerful experience you'll have in a lifetime.