Monday, September 30, 2013

Shaking, Shifting, Life-Changing October

Patricia Herlevi
September flew by quickly and so did summer in my part of the world.  Now, as the wind and rain are upon us, I turn my thoughts to October 2013 transits and boy are these whoppers!  In October we will experience a Lunar Eclipse in Aries (26 degrees) which means the Libra Sun is also at 26 degrees, Mercury retrograde in Scorpio, a loose continuing conjunction with transiting Saturn and the North Node in Scorpio and an exact square between Pluto and Uranus.  And before you push the panic button, please understand that all this shaking up is going to usher in a new era.

We could see the collapse of large financial institutions the last week of October with Mercury RX conjuncting transiting Saturn in Scorpio along with the Uranus/Pluto Square at 9 degrees.  If you don't already do your banking with locally-owned banks or credit unions (which will be fine) it's time to switch over from the large corporate bank.

Also don't invest in Wall Street and instead invest in your local community, especially local companies.  We're looking at some large shakedowns at the end of October and beginning of November, especially in the US, around the General Election.  This information comes from my Spirit Guides who conveyed this prediction to me this morning (October 10, 2013).  They are adamant about this and even had me look at my planet guide for exact dates.  Mercury/Saturn are at 13 degrees Scorpio on October 30 and in orb from October 24 through November 5.

Remember that Saturn constricts and here we have Saturn in Scorpio, ruler of financial institutions, governments, etc and Mercury in RX in this sign uncovering and discovering flaws in the system.  Pluto also rules financial institutions and is in Capricorn (big business) Squaring Uranus in Aries (the will of the people) at exact 9 degrees.  Big government is in a weak position financially speaking and unable to bailout any big bank collapses.   Also North Node is in Scorpio and so we are moving towards a greater destiny of transformation.

See Carl Boudreau's forecast for October on YouTube:

I agree with Carl B., but I have a different method of reaching my conclusion.  Carl combines a Full Moon and a New Moon Chart in a composite and he uses 0 degrees Greenwich Time. I just use the transits as they appear in my emphemeris and consult with my Spirit Guide Saint Thomas of Aquinas, the Free Will Astrology saint.  I will also include the first week of November in this post since the US holds its General Election on November 5, two days after the Solar Eclipse and a few days after Mercury RX joined transiting Saturn in Scorpio (October 30-31) when many political secrets would reveal themselves.

During the first two weeks of October, we will experience a Mercury-Chiron Trine (9-12), which will be a time of unblocking any energy in the form of thoughts and beliefs that blocks are ability to heal our childhood wounds.  However, remember that trines only create the flow and it is up to each of us to engage in that flow to bear fruit from it.  Mercury in Scorpio also trines Neptune in Pisces (1-5) so we can share our deepest dreams with others as we heal those childhood wounds that are blocking our potential to manifest our dreams.  In the realm of other asteroids, Vesta and Ceres in Virgo will oppose Chiron in Pisces which I also believe repeats the theme of healing our childhood wounds, plus nurturing ourselves so we can harvest our talents and dreams.  And once we do this we can serve the world in the way we are meant to serve the world.

Photo by Patricia Herlevi
Also at the beginning of October Pallas in Leo squares Saturn.  I believe this is about dealing with internal battles that we manifest in the outer world.  This could make us overly defensive and unable to grasp the sage wisdom that is all around us.  With Pallas in Leo we must get out of our egos and into our hearts where we create peace, compassion and express true wisdom.  Saturn in Scorpio though tells us that we will need to do some deep plumbing of our subconscious to find the structures that are blocking us which come in the form of beliefs, most often belonging to our parents and other authority figures--possibly the father.

And speaking of Scorpio, we will feel heavy Scorpionic energy in October with the North Node, Saturn, Mercury and in the last week of the month, the Sun in this transformational sign.  Remember Scorpio is often represented by the Phoenix rising from the ashes and I believe that when November rolls around we will feel like that phoenix and the more adept spiritualists will soar like eagles.  Since we have Jupiter in Cancer, another water sign and Neptune in Pisces, we must bring faith and forgiveness to the table.  The problem with Scorpio, at least in its lowest form, forgiveness does not come easily or readily.

Photo by Patricia Herlevi
Yet, if you find yourself unable to forgive a person or situation, consider that we are all connected and you choose what energy you want to bring into your space.  When you fail to forgive another (not the same as accepting their behavior towards you), you keep that person's or situation's energy stuck to your aura and it sucks you dry.  So if you value your life force energy, then by all means, practice forgiveness and if this is a challenge for you, seek professional help with this endeavor.  This October can either be truly liberating or we could feel deeper in chains if we refuse to cast off our burdens.  It really is up to us to make that choice.

Saint Thomas believes that transits can only control our life circumstances if we ignore the transits.  We have free will and even when we are forced with difficult choices, which we will experience in October, we still have choices and we don't need to refer to them as the lesser of two evils. Our choices are always between Love and fear. It is up to us to fathom the difference between the two, but I will give you a hint.  Love fills your heart with joy and fear darkens your presence and whips up your adrenaline. For thrill-seekers I suppose this adds excitement to their lives, however, fear never leads to anything truly fulfilling and the end of that road is loneliness and despair.

On October 8, we will feel Venus leave Scorpio and enter expansive Sagittarius.  After healing our wounds of your feminine side now we adopt a new life philosophy or even a new spiritual practice that takes us to the next level.  We will feel lighter and more expansive, as well as, hopeful in the area of our charts that Venus rules or occupies.  On the 16th, Mars enters Virgo, after spending time in fireball Leo.  Now, Mars will become fussy and agitated as it tries to perfect and find ways to use its energy to serve the planet, or since this is Mars, itself in some way. Keep those ego judgments at bay!  Mars will oppose Neptune on October 19 and 20 so we will know if there is enough steam behind our dreams to manifest them.  And we might need to deal with anger caused by paranoia and delusions.  Some people will deal with outraged or angry drug addicts or alcoholics and if that is the case, get out of that situation ASAP and get help.  Don't enable destructive behavior in anyone and take care of yourself first.

photo by Patricia Herlevi
While Mars opposes Neptune, we will also experience a Lunar Eclipse with Aries at 26 degrees on the 18th and also on this day, Pluto and Uranus form another exact square and this time Pluto is moving direct so the impact will be stronger than the last square we experienced a few months ago.  In addition, on the 21st, Mercury in Scorpio at 18 degrees goes retrograde, which in this case is going to cause each of us to do some heavy house cleaning in our subconscious.  We won't even have a choice in the matter since the Full Moon will conjunct Uranus at an earlier point and then move its way into the Lunar Eclipse. Eclipses as you know shake things up and with the Full Moon reveal our inner workings to the light.  Uranus and Pluto's square backs us into corners and forces us to deal with the stuff we had repressed, sometimes for years.

 If you are in denial about some area of your life you will need to face that stuff now.  And possibly it is not as bad as you think.  This square ends on November 17 so it's on-going and disruptive.  Not just on a personal level, but on a global level.  We will get some relief from Chiron in Pisces, but this asteroid or whatever you want to call him, is retrograde so whatever solutions we come up with will come from within.

The week of Halloween and All Soul's Day etc will bring interesting events our way.  How these events will turn up depends on which Scorpio themes are activated.  On a mundane level, I feel that there will be some shake ups with the upcoming General Election in the US (November 5).  Mercury RX will conjunct transiting Saturn on October 30-31 and we will need to watch for double-speak and politicians and other leaders blurting out secrets that they had repressed earlier.  In fact, it will be a week of confessions on every level.  Surprise, surprise, your wife was having an affair, but she can explain. Surprise, surprise, that CEO of a large corporation is caught red-handed or perhaps the surprise is more pleasant like a long-awaited pregnancy or a deep psychological breakthrough.  The week will be eventful no matter which angle we approach it and people will be confessing.  Where' the Pope when you need him, though he might do some of the confessing himself!

The other scenario that could happen is uncovering of sex scandals involving gurus or the revealing of a strange death cult (from the past), or a breakthrough with understanding the death and rebirth process such as with near-death experiences.  This would be a great time to delve into metaphysical topics, but stay away from the darker energies.  You could train in shamanism at this time or visit a shaman to get a clearing and removal of stuck entities.  This could also be a good time to contact dead relations or ancestors through a psychic medium--but make sure he or she doesn't pull the wool over your eyes.  We might wear masks during this week, but those masks won't hide our inner workings.  Even if we don't confess our inner most secrets and sufferings, they will seep out through Freudian slips or us talking in our sleep.  This could be a week of deep cleansing that ultimately liberates us.

The US General Election takes place two days after a Solar Eclipse and you guessed in in Scorpio at 11 degrees on November 3rd.  Again, the Scorpio themes are prominent here and some of those themes are economics, politics, other people's assets or money, including government money, deep psychology, sex, death, and taxes, to name a few themes.  Play around with that and see what comes up.  On the day of the eclipse, Mercury retrograde is at a 8 degrees within orb of the Moon/Sun in Scorpio and Saturn is at 13 degrees so here we are dealing with how authority, political authority in this case communicates to the public.  However, it is entirely possible with the Pluto/Uranus square happening that the politicians and governments of the world will be called to the carpet and have to answer to us, the everyday people for a change.  This is the great shift I predict, and Carl Boudreau and I'm sure other astrologers are predicting something similar. Politicians and world leaders must stop playing with our lives as if we are pieces on a Monopoly game board.

Hold on to your hats as the winds of change blow through.

If you're in Bellingham WA, visiting Bellingham or nearby, I am offering a Neptune Transit special of $10 off an hour reading for people with mutable planets at 2 to 7 degrees in their natal charts.  I also give readings on the other outer planets and I am open to giving readings for newborns (especially born in the past few months and now).  Contact me at wholemusicexp at gmail dot com  You can also contact me at

Tom Waits "Blow Wind Blow"

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Horseman Cometh--Pluto in Sagittarius Generation coming of Age

Photo by Patricia Herlevi
 (In the city where I live, some members of this generation were involved in a drunken riot over the weekend of October 12 & 13.  Prior to that a college girl was sexually assaulted in a different neighborhood. I have picked up a bad vibe from some of the incoming freshmen, especially the young men who think college is about getting high or drunk.  While you could always expect this with college age kids, it seems more prominent this year and dangerous.  Hopefully, the Pluto in Virgo folks will set these kids straight.  Here's hoping.)

It's hard to believe that Friday has arrived.  And all week I have been thinking about this post on the Pluto in Sagittarius Generation which lasted from 1995 to 2008.  We are now seeing the first of this generation coming of age, 18 years old and entering university as freshmen.  The confusion lies that 1995 was actually a transition year from Pluto in Scorpio to Pluto in Sagittarius so we get a mix of both generations, and you really couldn't ask for two opposing philosophical views than Scorpio and Sagittarius.

Pluto moved into Sagittarius for the first time on January 18, 1995 and remained at 0 degrees (a powerful degree) until April 20, 1995 when Pluto retrograde into Scorpio, 29 degrees, another powerful point. Pluto retrograde until August 7 and moved back into Sagittarius on November 11 where it stayed in Sagittarius until February 2008 when it dipped its feet in Capricorn and the world economy felt this contraction.  Anyone born during Pluto in Sagittarius is referred to Generation Z, but some of these folks, though very few have Pluto in Scorpio.

So what type of changes will we experience with the Pluto in Sagittarius Generation coming of age? Remember Sagittarius rules religion, philosophy, long distance travel, foreign countries, and pie-in-the-sky enthusiasm. But with Jupiter as its ruler, Sagittarius people tend to overindulge in food, drink and unrealistic dreams. But unlike the Pluto in Scorpio Generation which many of these folks thrived on drama and victim mentality, Pluto in Sagittarius has a sense of humor and sees the irony in situations.  Think Mark Twain verses Charlotte Bronte. Do you see what I mean?  The Pluto in Scorpio folks garnered the reputation of the black cloud at the party, while the Pluto in Sagittarius brings some oompah to the room.

Give Pluto in Sag a van and they're on their way
And already I have noticed a change in Zodiac weather with the new kids arriving on the university campus.  They are more boisterous, definitely social and some carry big dreams about their future.  Am I surprised? No.  I expect to see both women and men with longer hair, interested in outdoor recreation, and something to do with horses (hope they don't eat horse meat)and this generation will have problems with thighs since Sagittarius rules both the thighs and the liver.  While Pluto in Scorpio Generation thrived on sex, even sexting (sex texting) in grade school (this includes some of the Pluto in Sag kids too), not to mention procreating like bunnies as they grew into their twenties, Pluto in Sagittarius, I imagine will care more about liberation, and being fancy free to travel the world and expand their worldview, because those are Sagittarius ideals.  Though I warn these folks to ease off on the alcohol unless they wish to damage their livers.

While many of the Pluto in Scorpio students had an interest in psychology and social work (I met a few of these folks when I first moved to Bellingham), Pluto in Sagittarius will be more interested in foreign affairs, politics, transformation of religion, philosophy and other cultures.  I have also heard of an increase at the university of foreign exchange students.  In any case, when an outer planet switches signs we feel it on many levels so experiencing this generation growing into adulthood is going to bring with it many changes in all of our lives.  Movies, literature, music, food, and culture will all experience this weather change.

So what type of aspects did we experience with the outer planets when Pluto was in Sagittarius, Neptune was in Aquarius and Uranus was in Aquarius and Pisces?  We experienced huge growth in the housing market and ballooning mortgages which ended in scandals by the time Pluto rolled into Capricorn in 2008.  With Uranus in Pisces we experienced independent film making and do-it-yourself music growing in popularity, pretty much leveling the playing field.  We also saw the rise of electronic music and the emergence of guru-like d-jays on the club scene.  We saw raves and drug culture that bordered on shamanic, but in an unconscious way.  When Uranus was in Pisces and Neptune in Aquarius we experienced planetary reciprocity which doubled all the Aquarius/Pisces themes.

But Pluto in Sagittarius Generation who remained optimistic despite wars breaking out in the Middle East, terrorism, economic dips and inflation and we wonder do these folks hold up a bigger vision of what the world could look like?  It would take a lot of doom and gloom to bring these folks down from Cloud 9, yet we need to practice caution here too since Pluto in Sagittarius isn't the most realistic generation.  If these individuals don't like the rules, they might just quit school, sell their belongings and grab a backpack with world travel in mind.  They might just bunk traditional religion too opting for something more expansive and less dogmatic or they might invent their own dogma.

However, we must remember that during the Pluto in Sagittarius years we probably had too much freedom to roam and we didn't exactly take life seriously. We allowed our economy to crumble (not a bad thing, really), we bought houses we couldn't afford and maxed out credit cards, drank too much, ate too much, and now we are experiencing the worst obesity problems this planet has probably ever seen.  Now with Pluto in Capricorn caution has returned.  We care too much about what we eat, everyone it seems is trying to lose weight (except Capricorn Rising folks who tend to be lean).  We nurse physical injuries we acquired during Pluto in Sagittarius where some of us extended ourselves way beyond our physical limitations.

Keep an eye out on the emerging generation who are now entering adulthood.  After dealing with a generation of Pluto in Scorpio (1985-95), we will feel a mood shift and optimism returning. Employers will love hiring these folks because of their can-do attitudes, but whether or not these folks stick around long is another story.  You see there is always something better on the horizon and Pluto in Sagittarius folks won't stay still for long because boredom equals death to them.  They might start a new yoga revolution or join caravan buses as circus performers or lecturers that travel the world.  Their symbol is the satyr and the horse, a powerful symbol indeed.  And on their winged Pegasus, they will travel to Jupiter and beyond.  The sky is the limit or is it?

Friday, September 20, 2013

Trick or Treat--Mercury's Communication Style through the Zodiac

The Magician, Wikipedia
I have experienced a challenging week with the heavy planets beating me in the brow and kicking me in the butt. So this week's post falls on the lighter side.  Let's take a look at Mercury, the communication and technology planet and how the different sign placements cause us to fall into traps or trip ourselves.  As an added bonus, I'm including movies trailers that further describe the energies of each Mercury placement.  The title "Trick or Treat" revolves around the light and dark side of this dualistic planet with its dual rulers Virgo and Gemini.  So are you ready for some fun on a Friday?

Mercury in Aries speaks in hot or fiery tones.  Even when this Mercury placement falls on the shy side, you can still feel the heat underneath.  He might not be the most intelligent or articulate one in the room, but he will champion your cause as long as he can look chivalrous in the process.  On the darker side, this Mercury in Aries becomes overly defensive and is a real impatient hothead to contend with.  Remember Aries' planet Mars is a war god so this Mercury placement falls into the trap of using violent and destructive words that cause more harm than good.  On the lighter side, Mercury and Aries gives powerful speeches that stir passion up even the most apathetic crowd.

Recommended Movie: Erin Brockovich

Mercury in Taurus with the ruler Venus (which also rules the throat), this Mercury speaks in sensual words.  Perhaps she dabbles in poetry or sings for a living.  When I thought of this Mercury placement, The Sound of Music popped into my head with all those singing children romping about the meadows of the Austrian Alps.  On the darker side Mercury in Taurus can come off as lazy, in articulate, or stubborn refusing to hear another person's words, especially the words of Mercury in Aquarius which just seems too far out and detached of sensual experiences.  On the lighter side, Mercury in Taurus often possesses a soothing voice that is conducive to healing others through toning (sound healing using the voice) and bringing balance.

Recommended Movie: The Sound of Music

Mercury in Gemini since this marks the home sign for Mercury, this placement loves to talk and feels comfortable with the oral and written language.  These folks could talk all evening and with glib on a variety of topics, sometimes merging two topics at one time.  On the darker side, since Mercury in Gemini loves to hear himself talk, he might not hear what the others contribute to a conversation.  He might not be able to decide how he feels or what he thinks on a topic since both sides present a compelling argument.  On the lighter side, you could not find a more interesting conversation partner that this detached air sign.  And maybe you'll learn something new and fascinating in the process.

Recommended Movie: My Dinner with Andre

Mercury in Cancer could end in tears, if not an all-out sob fest. These folks grab your emotions with their well-articulated speeches.  They might not always have their facts straight since they too are swept up by emotions of the public or current events.  They are often found promoting causes revolving around nutrition, mothers, children or their country.  They might either be extremely patriotic or not at all depending on the rest of their charts.  On the darker side, Mercury in Cancer manipulates and controls others through self-righteousness and guilt.  They can also smother people with their emotional use of words.  On the lighter side, just like Mercury in Taurus, Mercury in Cancer brings comfort through soothing words.

Recommended Movie: Under a Tuscan Sun

Mercury in Leo speaks in a bold and commanding manner that sways an audience.  This Mercury speaks straight from the heart or the ego, depending on the person's evolution.  Motivational Speaker Marianne Williamson has her Mercury in Leo. You can almost hear her roar when she gets going.  These folks are definitely self-possessed and act like they own a place that they occupy even for just a moment.  The darker side of Mercury in Leo is when the ego steps out of the shadow and dominates others.  The lighter side comes out when Mercury in Leo speaks from the innocent place of a child, full of wonder, and believes in magic and possibilities.  These folks make excellent motivational speakers if they first motivate themselves and get off the couch and into the world.

Recommended Movie: The King and I (or the Lion King)

Mercury in Virgo...fuss, fuss, fuss...I don't have time for this as the White Rabbit scurries away with his pocket watch in hand.  Although this Mercury placement speaks more in analytical terms and uses practical everyday language or the stuff of computer geeks which only a select few comprehend. On the darker side, this Mercury placement nags, nitpicks and over analyses each situation when immediate action is required.  On the lighter side, this Mercury placement (when not suffering from nervous exhaustion) might just have the solution you need and they just want to help.

Recommended Movie: Amelie

Mercury in Libra conjures images of Jane Austen movies or novels. Here you have the discreet charm of the middle class, the protocol between the sexes, and a bit of subterfuge since Mercury in Libra can never face a problem head on, but instead find comfort in the gossip of friends. On the darker side these folks lean towards passive-aggressive subterfuge in the realm of communication.  They will only listen to you if you come across as positive, light and charming.  On the lighter side, they make good dinner hosts and bring the charm back into the mundane world.

Recommended Movie: Jane Austen's Emma

Mercury in Scorpio is just plain scary or on a good day, just spooky.  This Mercury placement speaks in cutting and biting words, often spicing up their communication with dark or vulgar words.  Or they might be incredibly psychic, see right through you with their x-ray eyes and not mince words when communicating with you.  Since this represents a fixed sign placement on the darker side, these folks are stubborn and won't listen to you if you're not on the same page as them.  On the lighter side, some times we need a dose of Scorpionic truth even if it stings.

Recommended Movie: Mommy Dearest

Mercury in Sagittarius...ha, ha, ha, ha, hah! This jolly Mercury placement loves to make fun of himself or other people.  He sees the humor, irony or satire in just about every situation imaginable and amuses others with his expansive wit.  On the darker side, Mercury in Sagittarius might tell too many off-color ethnic jokes or make grand generalizations about religious institutions or other nationalities.  On the lighter side, this guy will have you laughing in the aisles and feeling jolly in no time.

Recommended Movie: Woody Allen's Hannah and Her Sisters

Mercury in Capricorn commands that we get down to the business of the day and earn some money.  It's a long, lonely climb to the top and this Mercury placement often feels dejected and disappointed with others who don't share the same set of ethics.  This Mercury placement is often misunderstood and thought of as gloomy, however, in her own sober language, Mercury in Capricorn gives solid advice and would make an excellent mentor for a young entrepreneur with nerves of steel. On the darker side, Mercury in Capricorn sees the glass as half empty.  On the lighter side, this Mercury placement is the most practical of the 12 and set for success.  A personal trainer would do well with Mercury in Capricorn because she is not afraid of hard work and the slow climb to the top of the mountain.

Recommended Movie: It's a Wonderful Life

Mercury in Aquarius, think Martin Luther King, Jr. or any humanitarian clinging to a far-off and sometimes far-out vision.  When this person speaks, electrical sparks if not lightening bolts are felt in a room.  This placement speaks for the collective and not the individual's ego.  On the darker side, this Mercury placement comes across as too detached and might not concern himself with an individual's plight unless this individual represents the collective.  On the lighter side, a visionary needs to detach from emotions and sentiments to bring change to the planet.

Recommended Movie: Norma Rae

Mercury in Pisces recalls the murky depths of a foggy lake. This placement conjures movies of the Surrealists such as Luis Bunuel.  We have entered dream territory where people speak in riddles or in slippery words which leaves us feeling lost on Neptune.  On the darker side these folks double-speak and avoid committing to an idea, concept or they might pretend to agree with you.  On the lighter side, a big dream comes in handy now and again.  The world needs music makers and poets and we need to believe in moon beams, rainbows and castles in clouds or not.

Recommended Movie: Luis Bunuel's Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Rise of New Age, Manes & Exaggerated Celebrities: Neptune in Sagittarius (January 1970 - November 1984)

When I grew up during the 1970s, young girls were obsessed with horses, wild manes were the hair styles for both men and women, and Hollywood celebrities received exaggerated salaries for appearing in television network shows. And from January 1970 until November 1984 (Jan to May 1970, November 7, 1970 to January 1984 and then June 1984 to November 1984), Neptune transited in Sagittarius.  From March 1974 to March 1975, Jupiter transited in Pisces giving us a double dose of Neptune fog, religious fervor, new age exploration and celebrities with big hair.

While I was shuffling around on YouTube last night I ran into an expose of the 1970s big hit sitcom, Three's Company which starred John Ritter, Joyce DeWitt and Suzanne Somers, and many of the Neptune in Sagittarius themes surfaced in this behind-the-scenes movie-of-the-week.  In 1977, when it was still controversial for unmarried women to shack up with unmarried men (hard to believe this was the case after the Summer of Love and Woodstock, but), television script writers and producers came up with the concept of two single women living with a heterosexual man who posed as a gay man to protect himself from eviction.  While this concept wouldn't cause us to bat an eyelash now, perhaps Americans were in the throws of Sagittarius religious fervor in the late 1970s.

Cast of Three's Company
So in this movie, we follow the rise and fall of a superstar-in-the-making, Suzanne Somers who received bad advice from her partner.  Not satisfied with her role in an ensemble cast, Somers set her sights on the stellar heights that another blonde with big horsy hair, Farrah Fawcett had achieved.  She gambled her reputation, her friendship with her co-actors, and her relationship with the director, producers, crew and television network so that she could earn an exaggerated salary of $5,000 per show episode (which the producers refused).  By 1984, Somers' gamble ruined her career as an actress and she was appearing in television ads sponsoring Thigh Master.  In 1984, Neptune rolled into Capricorn who constricts and contracts, not to mention brings hardship to those people who lacked integrity during Neptune's Sagittarius transit.

While Neptune in Sagittarius obviously affected the entire world for 14 years and doubly when Jupiter transited in Pisces in 1974, we would have expected to see exaggeration in comedy, religion, philosophy, the movie and music industries.  My focus for this post is on the United States and mainly the entertainment business which provided us with themes of space travel, new age spirituality (Shirley Maclaine wrote her book Out on a Limb dealing with reincarnation towards the end of the Neptune in Sagittarius transit), drug culture (Neptune), mental health, drama on and off stage, and the age of the superstar.  During this time, we also saw the emergence of the confessional-style talk shows beginning with Phil Donohue's show where celebrities would reveal their innermost secrets such as battling with depression, addiction or food disorders such as anorexia and bulimia (Karen Carpenter comes to mind).

Pop culture revolved around big dreams and gambling one's reputation to achieve those big dreams no matter who was stepped on in the process.  This was an era of disco fog, dancing queens, and unlikely movies such as Star Wars capturing the imagination of millions of viewers around the world.  This was also the era of horror movies (lingering from when Neptune was in Scorpio) such as Jaws, Carrie, and the Exorcist (which involved religion and the devil).  Connecting with aliens also captured our attention with the hit movies E.T. and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.  The men portrayed in hit movies were the rugged adventurous type or self-effacing comedians (Woody Allen) and women portrayed possessed feminist attitudes, were often independent career women (Mary Tyler Moore) or sexy women with athletic bodies (Charlie's Angels).  Other television shows that fit the Neptune in Sagittarius themes were the sarcastic Cheers in which a group of losers hang out at a bar or the philosophical M*A*S*H which was just as much about race and foreign relations as it was a criticism on war.

On the spiritual side, people were searching for saviors to the point of joining cults such as the Moonies, the Hare Krishnas and they were just as likely to follow a television evangelist, not noticing that this Christ representative was fleecing them of their hard-earned money.  New Age practices emerged and created new celebrities in the form of channels, mediums, astrologers, and past life regression hypnotists.  People, mainly baby boomers searching for deeper spirituality traveled to India and other foreign destinations or became students of foreign gurus who founded spiritual centers in the United States and in Europe.  When Neptune was in Sagittarius people either opened their minds too far to the point of gullibility or they closed their minds clinging to old time religion.

Another popular past time or obsession during this time was dance and choreography. Hit movies such as Fame, The Chorus Line, The Turning Point (starring Shirley Maclaine) and Flash Dance centered on the world of dance and acting.  Young girls dreamed about auditioning for the New York City Ballet company or meeting Mikhail Baryshnikov and other ballet and modern dance superstars.  And this is when young girls weren't dreaming about becoming the next Nadia Comaneci in the world of gymnastics or obsessing about horses.

It's true I have singled out the planet Neptune and used it as a trend marker without considering the other major transits that took place during the 14 years Neptune transited in Sagittarius. Some astrologers will complain about this.  However, the point I'm trying to make and a point that was made in an astrology book I read on Neptune (years ago so I don't remember the title or author of the book) is that Neptune sets trends depending on what Zodiac sign it falls.  And it's actually entertaining to go back to the various Neptune transits and see what was happening in the world or in a single nation (like I have done).  Nations represented by Sagittarius would have figured prominently into the news during that era too.

I spent most of my formative years and my first two years of college when Neptune transited in Sagittarius and so this post acts as a nostalgic trip for me.  However, when Neptune rolled into Capricorn in 1984 we definitely felt the tightening of the belt financially speaking.  Now that Pluto is transiting over the same points that Neptune transited in from 1970-1984, we are again feeling economic stress.  I currently live across the street from the university I attended from 1982 to 1986 and I have noticed similar fashion trends and even music trends from when Neptune rolled into Capricorn.  I pinch myself sometimes when I feel that I'm 20 all over again and back in college.  You couldn't find a job in this town back then and you have a challenging time finding a job here now. I just hope that the Me Decade never returns since that was also the rise of gas guzzling cars, polluted air and wicked politics.  

Of course, now with Neptune in its own sign Pisces, we are seeing the legalization of drugs and new forms of inhaling nicotine.  We will also see the rise in addiction and mental illness caused by drugs, as well as, many celebrities succumbing to the glamorous haze of drug culture.  We will see saviors and martyrs, but we could also see us ditching all the above and finally ascending into Oneness.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Pluto-Uranus Square--Messages from the Deep End

Any of us experiencing direct Pluto/Uranus transits at the moment and for the past three years have experienced our share of breakthroughs and even disturbing metaphors.  Last night, after watching two movies, meditating and everything else I did within a 24 hour period, I saw the metaphor of toxins pumped out from a stomach with what happens when Pluto pumps out our subconscious.  If what the experts like Bruce Lipton are saying hold true--that most of our mental and emotional programming happens during our first five years of life and that we have no awareness of most of the programming in our brains, then a Pluto transit truly comes as a blessing!

To the outer world a Pluto transit looks like divorce, loss of a home or a job or a family member.  A Pluto transit could look like someone getting cancer or another life-threatening disease while they are at the peak of their career or in the prime of their life.  The Pluto transit is so powerful that it stops us in our tracks.  And this doesn't just happen with Pluto is in Capricorn.  And the Pluto-Uranus Square we keep hearing about now is not the first we have experienced in history even if it feels life-threatening to us.  People with mutable signs will tell you what happened to them when Pluto was in Sagittarius and Uranus was in Pisces! I even have stories to tell you with 6 of my planets in mutable signs!  As far as I know, we did not experience a Uranus/Pluto Square during that time, but we did experience Pluto and Uranus' transiting squares, oppositions and conjunctions with planets in Gemini, Sagittarius, Pisces, and Virgo. And now with Neptune and Chiron transiting in Pisces, we are revisiting those hot spots again, but through a healing and dissolving lens.

However, the energy we now face with the Pluto-Uranus Square is Cardinal and the Cardinal signs rule the angular (and to some people) the most important houses in our charts (1st, 4th, 7th and 10th) so we are forced to look at relationships, partnerships, parents, home, career and employment, not to mention our core identity.  Those are the themes of the angular houses.  And when you look at losses experienced in those areas (sometimes in one fell swoop), we are forced to take a deep journey into our subconscious to purge negative patterns and beliefs--some that don't even belong to us!  And until we purge those beliefs (we have a 20 year cycle to do that, but most intense around the time of an exact orb), we will remain stuck in our lives.

So if you find yourself repeating a pattern with relationships, career, home, family or health, take the dive down under, and I'm not talking Australia.  Pluto rules the underworld in our case, the subconscious mind, but not only that, Pluto can dredge up patterns from previous life times too.  It is no accident that you keep running into the same issues, same problems or same people dressed in different clothing.  Pluto brings this as a gift because until you shed light on this darkness, you cannot reach your full spiritual potential.  This should not cause a person with these transits to develop smugness to the rest of the world, but we still need to recognize the gifts Pluto (and Uranus) bestow upon us by clearing the deck and allowing us to start afresh.

I've mentioned previously that I have my Sun in Cancer at 8 degrees and my Mercury is at 11 degrees Cancer.  My AC is around 6 degrees Capricorn so I have felt this Pluto/Uranus square first hand, even for several years now since my North Node is in Cancer at 2 degrees (barely out of Gemini).  And my South Node falls into the 12th House which represents the deep subconscious and those things that are hidden from us.  So I want to tell you about a pattern that I unearthed within the past 24 hours that my Spirit Guides tell me is in most humans.

I have struggled with a lack of trust in other people (seeing them as incompetent and therefore attracting the incompetence in others or incompetent people) and I carried the belief system, "I have to do this alone and I had better do this (whatever the project or task) if I want it done right."  The other beliefs to look for is, "I am alone" or "I have to isolate myself from others."

This caused me to micromanage every area of my life! So I'm walking around with tight and tense muscles (for my entire life), I felt like I was carrying the weight of the world on my shoulder and I kept hearing my mother's voice from my childhood, "Can't you do anything right?"  And it's true I have experienced my share of failure and disappointment.  I did experience success only to find myself sabotaging success to rid myself of anxiety of something horrible about to happen.  I would quit or get fired from a job because of this anxiety that would cause me to do something compulsive that landed me in trouble. But I never knew what was going on until I unearthed this programming which revolves around trust and competency.  This also reflects the relationship you have with God, Angels, etc if you find yourself micromanaging the spiritual world through over praying or demanding that your manifestations show up in a specific way.

I won't go any deeper into this pattern and how it affects me because it's rather personal.  However, if you find that you keep repeating the same scenarios and if you find that you can't trust anyone, not yourself, not God, not your boss, friends, spouse, etc...then you are running this pattern in your subconscious and it's tied into a belief you either came to the planet with or adopted from your caretakers (parents, teachers).  The first step is to identify the belief and the second step is to release/remove the belief from your subconscious. You can work with an intuitive life coach such as Sonia Choquette or use Emotional Freedom Technique or other modalities for releasing emotions and beliefs.

You cannot cover up these subconscious beliefs with positive affirmations or Law of Attraction exercises.  You must first remove this belief or other damaging beliefs before manifesting anything or you will just manifest the same cycle of success-disappointment-failure.  Fortunately, you won't have to dig too deep if you experience Pluto and Uranus transits.  The outer planet Neptune also brings up beliefs and programming in the subconscious and dissolves the patterns, but you need to bring conscious awareness to the process.  Neptune can just as well lead you into brain fog or addiction as a form of escape.  When working with Neptune energy you must bring full consciousness to the process even if it automatically happens in the background.  And don't self-medicate or use mind-altering drugs when working with Neptune otherwise you fall into a trap or you end up like the minotaurs lost in the labyrinth.

The outer planets bring us a clear message that this is a time of transformation of the tallest order.  The entire planet is transforming starting with every cell.  The best way to handle the stress caused by all these changes is to develop conscious awareness and the planets are actually helping us to do that.  However, what happens is that people fight the process.  They hang onto relationships, jobs, careers, or lifestyles that don't serve them and had never actually served them.  We can no longer fool ourselves or live in denial.  And as you develop conscious awareness you lift your frequency or vibration.  As you do this, you have more dimensional options meaning you don't have to hang around in third dimensional reality any longer.  If you truly want inner peace and peace in the world, purge yourself of this old programming.  It doesn't serve you and in fact, it can and will destroy you if you don't remove it.

I recommend checking out books on the outer planets. First learn about Saturn, then Uranus, Neptune and then Pluto.  I also recommend visiting an astrologer with a focus on the outer planets because these planets are the great awakeners.  You master the energy of these planets and you reach enlightenment.  Some people scoff at me when I tell them that I practice astrology, but these people don't understand yet the power connected to the outer planets.  And maybe this is a good thing or a blessing in disguise because any time because there are those entities who would abuse such power.  Take the high road.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Ascension Sign--Rising from the Womb into the Light

In ancient times, astrologers found more significance with a person's Rising Sign, also known as Ascendent Sign, than with a person's Sun Sign.  This required that some one recorded an accurate time for a birth or natal chart. I read one article about an attendant hiding in a closet to record the correct birth time for a king.  And usually, birth times were only important for kings and emperors.  In medieval times, most people didn't even know the day they were born let alone the time as I learned when I was reading biographies of Joan of Arc in search of her birth date and time.  The situation was even more vague during the 12th Century with Hildegard von Bingen who didn't even know the year that she was born!

Many modern people don't know their Ascendent Signs because they don't know their time of birth.  When I was researching a time of birth for the famous Canadian piano virtuoso Glenn Gould, no one knew his time of birth.  I even contacted his most credited biographer and a reference librarian in Toronto. Gould was a home birth and his mother was probably too out of it to grab a note pad and write down her son's birth time.  Ditto for people born in public places, in the back of taxis or non-hospital settings.  And even with hospitals, such as in my case, the birth time on my record is probably off 10 to 20 minutes which makes a difference with the Ascendent especially near the cusps so a Sagittarius Ascendent could actually be a Capricorn Ascendent.

The good news about Ascendents is that each of the 12 Ascendent Signs have a particular body structure or defining feature and the Ascendent would also define the First House of a chart and the first years of a person's life. A Sagittarius Ascendent is usually a person with bigger bones, a bit chubby, with an inspiring and upbeat disposition.  His or her ruling planet is Jupiter.  A Capricorn Ascendent falls on the thin side with prominent bone structure, darker features (even someone who has blonde hair and a light complexion still seems to have darker features) and they walk with their head down and in front.  So a qualified astrologer would notice the true rising sign when meeting the client in person by physical features and even his or her communication style even though that usually falls under the planet Mercury.

The Ascendent is important because it marks the beginning or cusps of the first house and subsequently if you're using an Equal House chart, all the following houses.  Without a correct birth time, an astrologer won't be able to tell when a planet crosses an Ascendent (very important) or any of the angular houses such as the Descendent, etc...(First, Fourth, Seventh and Tenth Houses).  The astrologer won't know when an outer planet hits a house cusps, unless he or she grills the client for recent life events and the days those events occurred.  Some astrologers rectify charts to determine the correct birth time, but this is not something I'm knowledgeable with.

Images found on Wikipedia
A person's Ascendent is what we notice first about them.  Is the person pushy, forward with strong facial features? You might be dealing with an Aries Rising.  Does the person have prominent hands and arms, a bit clumsy but bright as a whistle? You might be encountering a Gemini Rising and so on.  You can find plenty of websites and blogs to give you descriptions of the 12 Ascendent Signs' features. I'm not going to go into that here.  Astrologer Mark Husson is currently writing a book on Rising Signs so I look forward to the publication of this book since he appears to have his foot on the right pedal with Rising Signs.  And he pokes humor at them too.

Mark once gave an explanation about how judging someone by his or her Rising Sign or "first impression" is a mistake in love or probably any relationship.  While the ancients gave the Rising Sign a greater prominence, it's not our true identity.  A Rising Sign is a marker in the sky that occurs during our first breath.  It isn't a planet and even though I have a Grand Earth Trine if I include my Capricorn Ascendent along with Jupiter in Taurus and Pluto/Uranus in Virgo, this is not a real Grand Trine because it does not involve a planet in Capricorn or the third corner of the trine.  The Ascendent however is a power point in a chart and when any planet crosses our Ascendent, we feel it and our lives seem affected by this transit.  But we also feel transits on our MC (Midheaven) or Descendent as well as the Fourth House (which I can never remember the Latin name because it's so strange).  Obviously, astrology is more complicated than a newspaper horoscope!

So let's get back to Mark's "first impression" analogy.  If you meet someone with a Taurus Ascendent with a Pisces Sun and a Gemini Moon for instance, your first impression of this person is stability and sensuality.  This person seems solid at first.  But as time goes by, you start finding this person slippery and wishy-washy, maybe he or she has a drinking problem or some type of addiction with that unstable Pisces Sun.  Or the person who seems so stable upon first meeting now can't make up her mind about anything and sees life in a dualistic way or the person might be bipolar with all that mutable energy with the Sun and the Moon.  See what I mean by first impression?  I agree with Mark's assessment and I believe in getting to know people slowly and using discernment in the process.  Divorce and painful breakups are a hard way to go and you can't blame the person for first impressions--it's their Ascendent speaking on a subconscious level.

So to end this weekly post, whenever possible get a correct birth time.  This will be harder for some people than others.  Mother's often don't remember because when someone's in that amount of pain, the birth time accuracy doesn't carry much weight unless the mother happens to be an astrologer and even then.  Nurses and doctors are often too busy to record a correct birth time and it's possible that they could be off 30 minutes or more.  In the case where you don't have an accurate birth time find an astrologer with experience rectifying a natal chart.

Without a correct birth time an astrologer has a faulty tool to work with (the natal chart) because he or she will not have information of when a planet crosses a cusps of a house or power points in a chart.  They can guess with a time frame and say within two to three weeks, as opposed to two to three days, Pluto will cross your Ascendent, for example.  With my own chart I suspect I have my Ascendent at 6 degrees Capricorn because when transiting Pluto parked at 6 degrees, I felt it as an identity crisis (First House) and I felt a shift of energy from the 12th to the 1st House.  This is why I feel that my birth time is off 10 to 20 minutes.  Besides my birth card says that I was delivered into the nursery at 9:09 p.m. but my mother tells me she was in surgery and not the nursery.  I was born as a c-section birth (surgical) and around an eclipse when no one was thinking clearly.

If you don't have a correct birth time, the planet transits might just point out the correct degree to you.  Most likely this will happen with a slow mover such as Neptune or Pluto resting on a degree for several weeks.  You will need to pay close attention to your emotions and events that occur in your life during that time.  And if this seems like too much work, get your chart rectified.  The Ascendent is important but if you don't have it, astrologers can draw up other types of natal charts where exact degrees of cusps aren't the focus.  You could look into whole sign astrology or astrology without houses...or you could try Chinese Astrology because you only need to know the month and year you were born.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Planetary dances & movement (what's going on?)

Found on Wikipedia
When I first began learning astrology, I read in many books that Venus moved one degree per day and that Mars transited through only six signs per year.  Planets were expected to behave (anthropomorphizing) a certain way and that the transits were predictable.  However, in the last year since I began focusing more intently on astrology, I noticed that Mars, Venus and Mercury have transited more rapidly through the Zodiac.  I visualize one of those gunnysack races from my childhood where partners or singles in the race stumble their way to the finish line, often falling face down in the mud. Some of you will have no idea what I'm talking about here.

Mars will transit through 9 Zodiac signs this year starting with Aquarius last January and ending in Libra this December.  Venus appears to sign hop at least one time per month and Mercury is moving more rapidly than usual and seems more erratic too--no wonder we're all having trouble staying on the same page!  I'm not an astronomer so I can't explain the sped up effect, but I can say that we feel tension when the energies change as rapidly as they have.  Children born during the past few years, and especially in 2012 and 2013 are wired differently, not to mention that they either come into the world deeply confused or know their mission and purpose in this lifetime.  Just look at all the configurations and aspects of the past three months alone! We experience a Grand Water Trine (with exact orbs), a Star of David, a tetrahedron (that fades in and out as pointed out by Carl Boudreau in his August and September reports for 2013), a Grand Cardinal Cross, that on-going Pluto/Uranus square and we also experienced double Full Moons in the sign of Aquarius in July and August.

So if you feel like you jumped down the proverbial rabbit hole and are chatting with a large white rabbit wearing a vest and pocket watch, you're not far off the mark. Stranger still, Neptune landed in its home of Pisces in 2011 and so it's purpose is to dissolve old religious dogma and patriarchal structures that don't serve our planet.  Meanwhile, Saturn, Pluto, and Uranus are breaking down old structure too.  Pluto dredges up unworkable patterns and beliefs from our subconscious and collective unconscious for us to look at, heal and release now.  Since humans don't like change, we fight this process and fall deeper into the realm of our egos hoping to find safe footing there.

Alice in Wonderland, Wikipedia
The problem with using the ego to give us the illusion of safety and security is that this causes us to grow more fearful and violent.  We cling to this idea of power which causes us to manipulate and control others so that they don't go and change on us.  I read yesterday about the actor Tim Robbins going through a midlife crisis in his 40s and other actors who also went through a midlife crisis.  This actor has his Sun in Libra, a Cardinal Sign that is feeling the brunt of transformation happening on the planet.  In another article, I read that the actor has visited prisons to teach acting workshops to inmates.  And this is exactly the type of love and compassion we can develop now under these planetary transits!  The message is "Find your heart center and then live from that place".

And like the gunnysack race I mentioned earlier, this presents an awkward challenge when we will fall face down in the oozing mud.  Transformation is not pretty and don't expect to wax any glamorous images from the process.  As societies and communities we need to focus on this huge transformation and stop getting lost in superficial nonsense like the dress Kim Kardashian was wearing on the red Hollywood carpet or Justin Bieber's latest exploits. Who cares already?  Meanwhile, the planet is in trouble and this just causes us to fall deeper into traps set by our egos.  Why don't we care about feeding the world's hungry? Why don't we care about climate change or what our political leaders are doing to dismantle our basic human rights? And I'm not suggesting that we focus on negative things.  But I'm also not suggesting that we focus only on self-interests and close our hearts to the rest of the world because we're in a position that allows us to do that.

Now, I don't know the reasons why the planets have shifted gears on us, why Pluto squares Uranus or why the personal planets are zipping through the Zodiac like Speedy Gonzalez on steroids.  But I will ask you to pay attention because when nature changes course, we need to adapt to those changes.  Movement of the outer planets in particular affects entire generations born during those transits, but these transits also affect our personal lives, where we live, where we work (if we have employment) and the current trends as they fade in and out.  The personal planets shift energies in our lives and when those planets land on the cusps of any of the 12 houses, we feel that energy shift.  We also feel the energy shift when the planets transit into new signs.  We especially feel the shift when the planets are at 0 or 29 degrees.  However, when an outer planet stays at 0 degrees for 2 to 3 years, we grow irritated from the energy.  Change already!

While we can look at individual charts to see what's happening on a personal level, we also must consider the global level too since none of exist in a vacuum.  People are feeling more frustrated and irritated now.  Many people are feeling hopeless and looking for escapes (which is why I'm concerned about the legalizing of marijuana in the U.S.because this all falls under Neptune in Pisces and drug addiction).  Do we really want Americans driving or working under the influence of this brain fog inducing drug?  Don't get me wrong, I feel that listing the drug use under a felony is an erroneous concept too, but the fact is drugs kill off brain cells and Americans are already lacking brain power compared to the rest of the world with a public education that ranks 26 worldwide.  Okay, I'm not going to get sociopolitical on you because I'm not a fan of politics.  However, I hope that Americans will educate themselves about the ill-health effects of any drug, plant-based or otherwise before turning it into a recreational pursuit.  It's bad enough people are radiating their brains with cell phones and I am concerned about the future of humanity because our civilizations are on the brink of total collapse because of unconscious behaviors.  Some energy healers say that humanity is stuck in the freeze mode as opposed to fight or flight.

However, the outer planets are giving us the message that total collapse of the old systems will allow us to rebuild a more peaceful and just world.  Pluto promises renewal after the wrecking ball comes through since this is the transformation planet.  When Saturn moves into Sagittarius in 2015 (?) we will create new spiritual belief systems after dismantling the old ones when Saturn transits in Scorpio with receptivity to Pluto transiting in Capricorn.  Neptune also kicks in by dissolving old religions and could also move us past our need for addictive substances, but only after enough of us hit bottom and decide we can no longer afford to live in a fog-induced state . We need clear and sober thoughts now, not escapism, which is just another form of denial.  The good news about Neptune in Pisces is that this transit also awakens greater consciousness.  Perhaps what people who use drugs are searching for is a sustained connection to the Divine.  That's my theory anyway and why programs such as AA works for so many addicts. (I add that Uranus will transform current technologies and question our leadership ethics).

Where we are heading is anyone's guess.  We can take the role of the shaman and surf the shifting energies and live in balance with the planets.  In order to meet this challenge we need to learn about the planets and their energies.  I believe that astrology is also going through a transformation and that it has grown into a shamanic tool that allows us to fulfill a hero's journey or quest.  But like any powerful tool, wield it with conscious intent.