Mercury just turn retrograde, which it does for three weeks three times a year, and is always a time to review, refresh, remember, and pick up our lost pieces.
Sure it’s important to practice basic Mercury retrograde skills, be careful of the messages you send, keep careful track of important personal items, and avoid accidents of inattention. Confirm reservations. Keep track of your phone and car keys. Assume any conflict that sprouts up is based on a misunderstanding, and work to correct that problem. Schedule in time for delays and bring a good book along wherever you go. Stop pushing new work forward and finish what’s already on the table.
This time Mercury retrogrades in the middle of community-oriented Aquarius, opposes expansive international Jupiter and brings our minds back to not just our personal history, but social history. It asks us to look a little deeper at the stories of our life and stories of our culture to see more clearly, and make reparations if needed, so the past can nourish us rather than restrict us to an old and unproductive pattern. Any time our minds go back to the past we can use it to either chew over old wounds and make them worse, or we can go back to see if we can get some of the shrapnel out of the wounds, remember the sweetness, or retrieve lost gifts. So when we find ourselves dwelling on stories of the past, let’s ask ourselves why we’re here and how we can make the visit productive.
Friday begins under a tender, meandering Pisces Moon with Mars and Neptune also conjunct in intuitive Pisces, a weekend-long aspect which brings out our vulnerability and the gift of dreaming, and may lower our energy level. We won’t really want to face harsh realities. So let’s use a moment of escape in a good way. Take a break and be fed by music and art, daydream about alternatives to conundrums, and come back to our logical work refreshed.
Over the weekend an Aries Moon urges us to create new beginnings, but now is a better time to experience one-off events as well as work on unfinished business and follow through on unfinished joys.
Next week starts with slow winter inertia under an earthy Taurus Moon, but that allows us to get oriented and assess what really needs to be done, and what unnecessary busywork we can put off for now. As the week progresses, look around for an urgent short-term project that looks like it’s only a sidebar to our plans but is knocking on the door and needs to be dealt with now. Venus joins Mars and Neptune in Pisces on Tuesday and adds to this spacey, intuitive, and less aggressive but more potentially passive-aggressive quality. Watch political decisions be proposed based on articles of faith and imagination (for better and worse), instead of on logic and a clear grasp of facts. And let’s be careful to balance the two ourselves.
In this intuitive but not particularly logical time, our creative and artistic expression can be strong, our senses are heightened. We can use these next imaginative few weeks (until February 20 when Mars enters Aries) to drift and dream the next chapter of our life into existence. We have an action-packed spring on the horizon, now is time to heal, renew, prepare, catch up, and listen deeply to make our action clean and inspired.
Friday, January 23: The energy swirls one level but seems to swirl in place on the other; we feel busy, but are we getting anywhere. Let’s focus on the quality of our interactions, the kindness of energy between our sensitive hearts, and keep our expectations low on a practical agenda with the Moon in subtle Pisces. Leave the day with people feeling heard and understood. We’ll appreciate low-key rest or a moment in a magical realm tonight.
Saturday, January 24: We are more antsy, ambitious but not particularly efficient, as the Moon enters Aries and squares the Sun. A trine between the Moon and Saturn asks us to get things done, but the stars don’t align for launching new projects. Go back to an old ambition, complete unfinished projects, or explore a familiar trail. Just rein in an edgy irritation and a return to old anger for retribution this afternoon; it will only up the ante. Tonight, let’s suspend expectations and do what we really need to do as the Moon trine Saturn.
Sunday, January 25: We want to change it up this morning but may have some karmic responsibilities to complete, or oddly pivotal events to respond to as the Aries Moon squares Pluto and trines Uranus. An uncomfortable morning can unfold into a more expansive, generous, peripatetic afternoon as the Moon trines Jupiter. Engage a spontaneous last-minute adventure and share perspectives.
Monday, January 26: The mood is more stubborn and settled today as the Moon enters earthy Taurus, get a steady groove going and pursue that which takes steadiness and endurance rather than finesse or flexibility. Check to make sure everyone is on the same page, as what needs to be done can be equally clear, but totally different, to others.
Tuesday, January 27: We get squishy and soft this morning as Venus enters Pisces. We won’t think anyone for rushing us, guilt tripping us, or stepping on our emotional toes. We need to find a good use for our sensitivities and finesse a new understanding, a new sense of beauty. Midafternoon let’s take this new sensitivity out to understand some key player and change the dynamics with empathy as Mercury trines the lunar nodes. Tonight, generosity brings generous returns as the Taurus Moon squares Jupiter. We may want a surplus of delicious food or sensory pleasure to soothe our aching nerves.
Wednesday, January 28: The energy still swirls in place and has trouble moving forward this morning unless we simply put one foot in front of the other. It’s a good morning to tend to earthy chores like laundry or filing. Conversation picks up, we get more nervy and interactive this afternoon as the Moon enters verbal Gemini, but can find ourselves at cross purposes with one another as the Moon squares Venus and opposes Saturn, and easily unsettled by relationship oddities. If so, let’s not get tied up in verbal knots, but stand back and feel sympathy underneath.
Thursday, January 29: Take the opportunity to communicate while the Gemini Moon trines the Sun and Mercury in Aquarius midday. Share camaraderie, grow understanding in snippets, just know that attention spans are short and people are feeling touchy and a bit nervous. Some low-level anxiety homes from our unusual sensitivity. This can sharpen our temper or bring out our klutzy streak if we feel pushed or rushed around dinnertime as the Moon squares Mars. Let the conversation be far-ranging tonight; expand understanding but don’t expect to solve the problem.
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This week will probably not go as expected, but we can get organized and take advantage of serendipitous moments. Our flow of concentration and breaks unexpected agenda are introduced early next week as Mars conjuncts intuitive, spacey Neptune while mobile Mercury turns retrograde. Ordinary plans for travel, communication, and mutual understanding may break their stride and give us an opportunity to reconsider and find the missing pieces. Coming up we’ve got three weeks to review and reorganize, let’s use those to our advantage.
Now a Mars-Neptune conjunction, with Mercury retrograding, can be a tricky aspect. On a good day it helps us let go of outdated goals and old angers, we can forget what was so burningly important to us but is no longer relevant. It imparts a willingness to take actions based on faith and loans us ideological curiosity, sensitive understanding, and can help us release our escapist patterns. We may find it easier to forgive, though we may feel the sadness underneath.
In the practical realm this conjunction energizes (Mars) our dreams and intuition (Neptune) but may leave us feeling a bit lazy and permeable. It activates the waters, though can make us more prone to slipping and spilling. vagueness and forgetful ness can make us lose words in the middle of a sentence, or lose track of important details in the middle of a transaction, unless we track them carefully.
On a bad day it can intensify any ongoing fight (Mars) for religious beliefs (Neptune) or leave us unusually attached (Mars) to our illusions (Neptune), which is a little scary right now. It will be up to us to add the compassion, the visceral sense of connection which is the deepest gift of Neptune, and a willingness to see even uncomfortable truth with the bravery of Mars.
Along with this vague if inspired confusion, we may have a surplus of emotions. Look to the west just after sunset and notice Mercury and Venus (in Aquarius) and Mars (in Pisces) running together low in the Western sky. They will be joined by the waxing Moon early next week. Neptune and Chiron are also there, invisible to the naked eye but in the mix nonetheless. Venus and Mercury in Aquarius can be emotional, but rather abstract; people get all emotional over ideas, words, concepts, and their place in the community. Right now these two are opposed Jupiter in Leo, the planet that expands whatever it touches; all together they can make our heart bubble over like a part of porridge on high.
With this combination we want to feel a collective heartbeat and ache for the woes of the world together. Gatherings move our hearts, as we saw in Paris last week, and will see in America this MLK Day. But with this farsightedness we can miss the needs of those closest to us, or think we know their feelings better than we do. So let's ask. We may need to be unusually honest, revel in our right to free speech, but notice that although we have the right to say anything, everything we say has emotional consequence.
Bubbling porridge can make a mess. We need to notice when we're boiling over emotionally and step back, breathe, and care for our heart.
The weekend begins with a restless, relatively cheerful Sagittarius Moon and asks us to keep attention on the international stage and the great outdoors. We get cabin fever where we’ve been indoors too long, but the cure is easy; just ask a dog. On Sunday, the dark of the Moon in Capricorn can bring out our grumbles. We notice but we haven’t done, what needs to be done, which can help us batten down the hatches for the coming Mercury retrograde cycle: make sure bills are paid, tickets purchased, papers signed. It helps to make lists. Monday's holiday still nudges us to accomplish a lot, even under duress or with distractions.
The Sun and Moon both enter Aquarius early on Tuesday and conjunct- just as Pluto squares the lunar nodes. This New Moon is a turning point that challenges us to shift our group dynamics, let go of relationships and attitudes that don’t serve, and make new connections that do.
Glitches thicken around communication and transportation as Mercury appears to hold still and turn retrograde on Thursday. Don’t push the river mid-week, work with finesse and attention instead. When old patterns raise their heads, don't get discouraged or feel stuck in the past, because we can do it differently this time. We're just up for another layer of our growth.
Friday, January 16: Appreciate this seriously restless morning as the Sagittarius Moon squares Mars and Neptune. Faraway beaches seem to beckon. We can feel fried if we have to sit still and just do paperwork; our mind and feet need to wander, and then can return to the job at hand refreshed. Policy questions arise, how do we understand the problem, organize a response, and proceed. Our priorities may be questioned over the next few weeks, stay on target but adjust as needed. Tonight, help free one another's spirit from this week's heaviness.
Saturday, January 17: Meander and roam as the outspoken Sagittarius Moon trines expansive Jupiter this morning. Not everyone needs to meander in the same direction, so split up and arrange meeting point if the mood hits, we need to feel connection and freedom at the same time. International news and world beat aesthetics remind us that we are a global citizen; explore the the joys and responsibilities thereof. People are farsighted today, but that can mean they don’t see what’s right next to them; don’t take it personally. Speak up and keep them informed.
Sunday, January 18: Reassess, reorganize, and search one’s soul. Look into personal cultural history for a fresh understanding of the moment, as our old ghosts can be with us and melancholy wafts under a waning Capricorn Moon. Wrestle with questions around dharma, check in with one's soul's true work to see how we're doing, and what needs to be more aligned. Small accomplishments soothe the soul and help us prepare.
Monday, January 19: Our hearts swell and emotions spill over for the sake of the world soul today as Venus opposes Jupiter and Mars conjuncts Neptune. We may be personally grumpy and uncomfortable as the Capricorn Moon conjuncts Pluto, remember recent losses or questions around abuse of power vs. empowerment, but can feel better when we feel we belong to something larger than ourselves. We need to feel hopeful, then the work is worth it all.
Tuesday, January 20: The mood shifts radically as the Sun and Moon both enter Aquarius and conjunct. It's an important day to reorganize our relationships, out commitments to our teams, and strengthen healthy friendships. Engage important conversation, and take notes about the work to come, even though everything may begin to slow down. Look for a path that is easier, less stressful, more collaborative. But watch out for misunderstandings, it’s easy to develop a theory and think we know what’s happening when we only have a few pieces of the puzzle.
Wednesday, January 21: Mercury retrogrades and our signals can get really crossed today, even where our intentions are the best. Our bad intentions will tend to backfire and blow up on us. Don’t run on the ice, don’t run into assumptions; walk with grace, with heart and mind connected. Scan surroundings for practical details that must be followed through upon, or people who really need help, as they can so easily fall through the cracks right now.
Thursday, January 22: We feel for the poor, the hurt, the downtrodden as the Pisces Moon conjuncts Neptune, Mars, and Chiron. But we may think that’s us as this lineup can leave us sensitive and sulking. Go ahead and be sensitive, feel the feelings and make life feel safer, but keep relative pain in proportion, and notice where the real work is needed.
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|A look at the year 2015.
by Heather Roan Robbin
Whose life has not changed much in the last three years? Seven Uranus-Pluto squares from 2012 through March 2015 dissolved our old forms and kept us shifting and adapting for three years, precipitating transformations both challenging and wonderful. Toward the end of this year, new forms begin to solidify. Do we like the shape of our life? If, not, let’s use this malleable, potential-filled year to change it up.
The tone of 2015: The last echoes of the Uranus-Pluto square (from the two planets we associate most with revolution and transformation in the pro-active Cardinal signs of Aries and Capricorn respectively) keep us unsettled, exploring our options, and confronting (Uranus in Aries) the power of organized authority (Pluto in Capricorn). Venus and Mars run close together all year long, and add extra emotional torque to all we do. Romance is in the air. So is passionate social unrest and intense personal engagement with our work. Objectivity, however, may be sparse on the ground.
When we put these two planets we most associate with revolution and transformation in an intense squared relationship, Uranus (change) and Pluto (power and transformation), anything can happen., Anything but us to expect things to stay the same and us be happy about. The world is changing, but our impatience and concern can outpace the rate of change.
When this square began in 2012, we saw it echo in revolutionary politics around the globe, but events were still pretty surprisingly quiet (if contentious along party lines) here in the USA. But recently Uranus and Pluto approach the mid-degrees of Cardinal signs (they are now at 13°) and begin to dance on the chart for the mythic America, the one born July 4, 1776, bringing the productive discontent home to roost. Trying to smooth things over in a Pluto-Uranus transit will not work, whether it happens to our country or to ourselves; we have to dive through and do the work. This transit is asking us to change something inherent about the American identity (as Pluto opposes and Uranus squares our national Sun), and change how we structure and discipline are use of power (as Pluto opposes and Uranus squares our national Saturn).
In a personal way this square continues to ask us how do we use power (Pluto in Capricorn), and by that we mean electrical power, fossil fuels, personal power, political power; how do we take it back where we’ve given it away, and make sure we’re wielding the power we do have in the cleanest of ways possible. In a more enthusiastic tone, this square also asks us to really listen to our enlivening, precious, spontaneous spark, listen to what feeds that spark and where it calls us to go.
As 2015 dawns, feisty Mars in Aquarius opposes Jupiter in Leo (both stubborn fixed signs) and sets a strong, energized, competitive, argumentative tone for the whole year. It encourages us to fight for health, for what we believe (Aquarius can be so theoretical) and not back down when advocating for societal causes we believe in.
But it also does the same for those on the other side of our debate. This aspect is tricky; it gives us energy when we’ve got a clear direction, and helps us tackle big challenges with enthusiasm. But once we get locked in a debate or argument can make it hard to let go and hard to move past oppositional behavior into win-win solutions. Again, we’ll see this in our politics and in our personal lives, and have to add our own imagination to find a way for everyone to feel like they’ve won if we want to get past the argument and on to something else.
Saturn in Sagittarius squares Neptune in Pisces (both intuitive mutable signs) on and off all year (intensifying in spring and late fall). Together they also ask us let go of our illusions (and show us the difficulties if we don’t) around the Sagittarian issues of justice, education, spiritual philosophy, and communication across international and inter-species boundaries.
On a more personal level this Saturn-Neptune square ask us to balance work and spirit; instead of seeing our discipline and work at odds with our creative process and spiritual journey (highlighted by the square), this square nudges us bring these apparently divergent polls to work together. Explore how to put disciplined and form into our creative and spiritual practice, and put imaginative inspiration into our work.
In early January, Venus and Mercury in Aquarius turn our focus to our relationship with group, community, the body politic. We may start the year slow and deep as we wrestle with our internal questions, may wrestle with one another or with our worries.
We may even feel inadequate or incompetent for our year ahead as the Sun comes to conjunct Pluto right near a Full Moon in emotional and sensitive Cancer (opposed Pluto and squares Uranus) on January 4. Let’s comfort one another, hold our hearts dear and just make this a deep time, not a deeply worried or resentful time. We can come out of this introspection with new and thoughtful fervor after January 6.
Mars enters Pisces January 12 and takes the challenge inwards, we need to feel the woes of the world (and our own it is a sensitive time) and respond with healthy action. We can feel it all and move forward anyway, but must do so with kindness. Technical innovations jump forward, but consider postponing high-tech purchases and take the time to review while Mercury retrogrades January 21 through February 11.
It’s going to be a fiery spring. The two planets of emotions, Mars and Venus, rush together into passionate Aries February 19 (Mars stays here until it enters Taurus on April 1), (the Sun and Moon enter Aries on March 21 followed by Mercury on March 31) increasing our desire-nature, lowering impulse control, and adding the spark of innovation and willfulness to all we do. Life can conflagrate quickly; be wise, feel the impulse and think for the long haul. This lights a fire under us, so what do we want to bring to a boil? This spring brings fresh revolution with deeply rebellious energy, but we can waste it all in reaction or we can choose to pour this fresh energy into fresh terrain.
Early in May both Venus and Mars enters earthy Taurus. The seeds we plant will root-- whether they are seed for food, love, grudges, work, babies, or hope---so let’s sow with consciousness. Mercury retrogrades May 18-June 11. Enjoy an earthy muskiness this spring, but reel in a tendency to be possessive or territorial, especially around old friends or familiar places. Look for a deeper meaning of security. Reach into the past to preserve personal history, archaeological artifacts and ancient traditions.
The summer brings a review of our work over the last few years, as Saturn retrogrades back into Scorpio and takes all our work down deep within, insisting we take out the trash from memories, hearts and closets. We may see a return of unfinished business left unsettled over the last few years, we’re not stuck here we just have a little bit more work to do to close those chapters.
Mars enters Cancer on June 24 and brings the conversation back to more intimate places but also hones our defenses. If they can save their pride, people are more willing to let go of old angers. Use this warm-heartedness to repair old crisis as Mars strikes the fading Pluto-Uranus square mid-July.
Exercise family responsibilities and boundaries early in August as Saturn turns direct, but lovingly and kindly stay an authority in one’s own life. We focus more on service and less on pride in September as Jupiter enters industrious Virgo, and may need to tend to health issues around filtering and cleansing of our blood stream and the earthly arteries of rivers and lakes
July brings a more idealistic and romantic vibe as Venus in Leo conjuncts Jupiter, peaking July 1 and Mars trines Neptune July 8. People may be able to let go of old angers if they can save their pride in the process. We can use this this warm-heartedness to prepare for a difficult but opportunity-filled weeks as Mars strikes the fading Pluto-Uranus square in mid-July, and take the opportunity to repair an old crisis.
As Uranus begins to pull away from Pluto in the fall, the world doesn’t suddenly get calm, but we may find the major agendas are now already on our plate, rather than new ones arriving weekly, as they have the last few years. We see the work that needs to be done, and now we have to do it. There’s a chance that recent improvements can slide back and we let go of recent progress, but only if we settle.
This is an important time to make working compromises that lead to productive roads, to have patience while people step forward and do their work, but not to let up on our recent efforts for improvement. Whether we’re talking political pressure, or were thinking of our own recent self-improvement efforts, gentle steady pressure towards our goals is really important this fall as new forms and habits coalesce.
As Mars and Venus run together in Leo through September, they bring romantic fervor to the start of school, give us the guts to reach out and expand our social circle, but also add melodrama. Work and personnel are reorganized, and the financial market may adjust.
Mercury retrogrades September 17 through October 9, Pluto turns direct after a long retrograde on September 25, unearthing surprising sludge from the depths of our psyche, but encourages progress soon after.
October –November the focus will be on social justice and improved egalitarian relationships. New societal forms are coalescing, so are new relationships, let’s make sure they work. December looks complicated, more on that as the year winds on.