Many of the same conditions that we experienced in July persist through August, but there are important differences. First, we have Jupiter’s energy available to us now that it has past its opposition to the Sun, the peak of its yearly cycle. We have all the wisdom (and daring) that it imparts, even though it is rather timid, pale shadow of itself while in its sign of detriment, Capricorn.
The big news is what’s happening on the Leo-Aquarius axis of the zodiac. We have two eclipses (solar and lunar) there, and the latter catches the energy of the Sun’s opposition to healing Chiron and dreamy Neptune, giving us a triple energy peak on August 10-16. This pattern promises both the best and the worst: the best in imagination and innovation, and the worst in chicanery and “swift-boating” in the US pre-election season.
If you catch us in the middle of our story, Chiron and Neptune have been wooing each other for a couple of years. Now as they begin to really connect, they present us with an opportunity to heal the Great Wound (both personal and global). To heal it, we have to see it. In this five-year interaction, we are in the “learning what it is” phase, which is often the most difficult because we haven’t had time yet to develop solutions.
The culmination of the learning process comes during the triple energy peak; the good news is that our new awareness frees us to act, and we are SO ready to act! The clustering of the planets has meant that we have had a preponderance of quincunxes in recent weeks (read more about quincunxes in Terry's article in the July Daykeeper). This, the “hungry aspect,” leaves us feeling dissatisfied, penned up, and yearning. Yet, it is a vital stage in the cyclic nature of being. Without this essential down time, we would not be fully prepared for the culmination that is shortly to come. We would not be rested and have time to see the ways we can improve our trajectory. We would not have time to adjust to a slower pace but be constantly ramping up our frame rate to an ever more frenetic speed. Winding down permits us to see that there is no need to rush around, nor value in doing so.
We in astrology know that this is just the calm before the thunderclap that awakens us to a renewed task, and we can pick up steam similarly revived in body and soul. The Leo-Aquarius axis teaches us about the balance between the self and the group. This is the great frontier of human relations, our greatest challenge. If we cannot get along in groups, we are doomed as a species. Sting puts it as, “Men [people] go crazy in congregations but they only get better one by one.” (“All This Time,” from The Soul Cages.) In August, we discover more about how to get better one by one.
Saturn finally clears its most recent retrograde zone, and as it does so it begins its face-off with Uranus, an interaction that will last through July 2010. These are the planets that rule the balance between freedom and limitation in all its many expressions, from rebellion against the status quo to young versus old. We can imagine this expressed through the presidential candidates, McCain versus Obama. Amazingly, the first exact contact between these planets occurs on November 4, Election Day.
In August, while they have yet to connect, other planets will carry water for them. First Mars, then Mercury and Venus, and finally the Sun. These contacts create a condition called precurrence, which may be as mild as foreshadowing but could bring powerful events in themselves. Watch what happens on the days that these planets make contact with Saturn and Uranus to get a glimpse of what the next three years hold.
Pluto passed its yearly peak on June 20, and since has been giving us a grand retrospective of the past 15 years that it’s been in Sagittarius. We’re closing a chapter that we opened in 1995, and it’s natural to look back and see our tracks in the snow. In some ways it feels like a dream world, when gas was cheap and anyone could get rich tomorrow. Although Pluto has only dipped its toe in the waters of Capricorn, it’s been a sobering experience and a shocking adjustment from the headiness of its Sagittarian sojourn. Its position late in the sign gives us shorter Moon void periods until it moves back into Capricorn near the end of November.
Stabilizing all this a trine between Jupiter and Saturn that can be felt with increasing strength through the end of the month and into the fall. This is creating the environment for a soft economic landing through the cooperation of business and government and smoothing the way for enterprises to flourish.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 1
We start the month off with a bang, as the New Moon Solar Eclipse forms at 9º 32' Leo at 3:13 AM. The eclipse disrupts our expected experience of purely solar energy at the time of the New Moon, and brings us a brief spell of undiluted lunar energy. This allows the unconscious mind to speak to us without impediment. In Leo, it will make clearer to us what is our path with heart, the path we must follow to create meaning in our lives. This is a total solar eclipse, which will completely hide the Sun at its greatest point. Its totality will be observable in the northern reaches of Canada, Greenland, Siberia, and Mongolia.
The Sun is in its glory in Leo, and it carries Mercury and Venus on its coattails. Mercury is now moving out of the Sun’s light, but it is still technically combust and invisible to us. Our mind is perhaps overstimulated, running like a hamster on a wheel, trying to make logical sense of things that cannot be measured in logical, linear terms. If we can step off the wheel, it will all make sense in time, as Mercury clears the Sun’s glow.
This is a good time to be alert to events and experiences, because all the patterns that become exact later in the month are forming at this time. In Washington, DC, the eclipse occurs minutes before sunrise, which should provide for a spectacular event, although it will appear as a partial eclipse from this location to the south of the eclipse shadow. With the Sun rising in its home sign, it presages a new beginning for the US. The nation will rise from its economic ashes with renewed spirit and a new direction. This eclipse (and the Ascendant of the Washington chart) is only one degree away from the US North Node. This emphasizes even more the new beginnings, although it will take a little time to bring economic relief.
Saturn and Mars in the second house of the nation’s monies and resources suggests that new regulations will be set in place to curb zealous speculation, but it also suggests that conservative elements may prevent the hardest hit people from experiencing the upturn for a long while. The Sun in Leo is so strong that it portends good things to come for the US during the coming six-month period. While other changes wait in the wings (symbolized by the aspects forming with Jupiter and Uranus), people will be mulling over the choices they will soon have before them—to invest in a future based on new leadership, leadership style, and philosophy, or to stay with the status quo. With Pluto in the 5th sign, Congress is distracted and for many members, everything is about selling themselves to extend their incumbency. It also suggests that there are a few more bombshells set to hit the stock market over the next six months from mega-institutions and corporations.
The Sabian Symbol for 9 Leo is: In a scene of weird display and brilliant color, glassblowers produce one by one the marvels of their craft (Marc Edmund Jones’ imagery). Rudhyar describes this as “The need to involve one’s most spiritual and vital energies in the creative act if it is to produce significant and beautiful new forms.” It suggests the brilliance of each soul as it is awakened to Its Self, so that each “gets better one by one.” Our most profound and meaningful creative product is our Self. Let the healing begin!
Soon after the eclipse, the Moon begins its sweep over the remaining planets in the Leo stellium, bringing the instinctual knowledge of the solar eclipse into the conscious mind as it conjoins Mercury. While in the short term the mind is a feeble tool to use in grappling with the great energies of this time, in the long term we’ll be able to make use of them in rational ways.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 2
The Moon transits the rest of the Leo by noon, ending the solar eclipse period. All ends on a note of hope and optimism, to be felt for six months, as its final aspect is a trine to Pluto. It is void of course from 11:59 AM to 1:59 PM—good time for a siesta or dip in the pool! After 2 PM, we can use the Moon conjunction to Saturn (which occurs in Sunday’s wee hours) to make long-lasting agreements tied to efforts that benefit by slow development.
We can’t forget the quincunx of the day: Mars to Chiron/North Node. This is the third of 3 steps to a healing process, a lesson about life that we are learning. Because of the close proximity of Neptune to Chiron, this lesson is a stage in the process of healing our own Great Wound. Today’s events will tie in a thread to events that occur through August 8.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 3
The big event of the day is Mercury’s quincunx to Jupiter. Relationships make the world go around. Mercury and Jupiter are a primal pair in relationships because they rule opposing signs; we want these two mental-intellectual planets to get along. They are just completing a yearly “dry” period, when they are in disharmony for about three months. This is the final step in that disjuncture before they move toward communion again. Today, you may be aware of all the ways in which you wish you’d been smarter, made wiser decisions. However, life isn’t a do-over. We have to move on from here. Use your new awareness to avoid the same mistakes in the future. The Moon conjoins Saturn too early to be felt, but it trines Jupiter to bring a glow of confidence and ease our mental concerns. Give yourself a break—it’s an excellent energy for entertaining.
MONDAY, AUGUST 4
The Moon’s aspects are tough today, suggesting a rough re-entry into “normal” life, but a Venus trine to Pluto promises harmony in our relationships. The Moon is void of course from 5:15 to 7:28 PM; use this time to complete things that you don’t want any more activity or response from. If you can wait until after 7:28 PM, the planets are especially supportive of harmonious connections with others. Use your Venusian allure to capture the heart of a loved one.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 5
It’s a day for summer-tinged completions, as Venus gets ready to leave Leo. At 9:20 PM, she enters Virgo, and we get a new, more industrious perspective. The time for basking and sun-bathing is over—there’s too much to be done! As the Libra Moon bridges the applying Sun-Jupiter quincunx near bedtime, don’t get anxious—time enough to get started tomorrow. For now, if you must, make a to-do list—then get some beauty sleep.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 6
If you’ve had a growing sense of urgency this week, it is due to the Mars-Uranus opposition that has been reaching its perfection. It will culminate today at 11:37 AM, introducing a volatility to life that is often experienced as a flurry of activity in response to an unexpected event. Since it frequently demands that we set aside any planned activities, it might be wise to consider plans as optional today. If you get a chance to fulfill them—fine. When we let go of expectations, Uranus is easier to take. Mercury also reaches its opposition to Neptune, the first of the perspective-creating events that will clarify our new/next direction, at the same time as it quincunxes Uranus. This challenges us to translate our vision of the future into innovative action. Moon provides nurturing support for this process, suggesting that, if we pay attention, there’s a wise person who offers us quiet counsel on this issue if we will listen for it. It may only be a momentary event, so allow yourself to be a blank slate to be written on in spite of all the day’s activities.
We can’t forget the Sun ,which is making one of those oh-so-prevalent quincunxes, this time with Jupiter. The Leo-Capricorn quincunx juxtaposes different leadership styles—motivational versus responsibility-oriented. Blend them to make wise and creative decisions with a broad perspective. The actions you take now will be tied to those you took on July 9.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 7
Our dreams will be more vivid in the early morning hours as the void Moon permits our consciousness to travel the inner realms. We won’t be up until after it has entered Scorpio at 4:26 AM. What a day for opportunity, with Moon sextiles to Venus and Saturn bracketing normal working hours. Use this time to make that list of calls you’ve been putting off.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 8
We get to check in on how well we’re using this month’s energies when the Moon reaches its First Quarter square to the Sun at 1:20 PM. Located in Scorpio with the Sun nearer to both Chiron and Neptune (not to mention the lunar eclipse), impending events are beginning to take shape. We still have time to adjust our path to create better circumstances. The US gets a break on this lunation as well, with the Sun in an exact trine to the event Ascendant.
However, it is very close to the South Node, making this a pivotal time in current events, even in US history. The Moon brings some uncomfortable truths to the surface when it squares Chiron and Neptune, but since it also trines Uranus, quick selfless responses will bring positive results. With Jupiter in the second house and near the end of its retrograde, we can see the economic light at the end of the tunnel. The nation regains its optimism. On a personal level, the ultimate clarifying moment is near...we could even experience great insight now. Still, more is yet to come on the lunar eclipse next week.
The Sabian Symbol for 17 Scorpio: A woman, made pregnant by her own spirit, is “great with child” (Dane Rudhyar’s imagery). Rudhyar explicates this as “a total reliance on the dictates of the God[dess] within”. This is the result of the hieros gamos, or “the marriage of the self to the Self”. Before we can be in true union with another person, we have to marry (be true to) our Self. To be in harmony with the Cosmos, we must create harmony within. Once we do so, we become “pregnant” with the gift we can give to the world. This is another energy of renewal and rebirth.
Another one of those pesky quincunxes comes up, this time between Mars and Neptune. The insights we’ve been gaining may lead us to feel like we should act—yet this is not the time to do so. Wait for more clarity, and your responses will be different and more satisfying.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 9
Mercury trines Pluto today, making this a good day to emphasize communications and create agreements, even in delicate situations. This is its parting shot before it enters Virgo on Sunday. We can even speak truth to power. The Moon goes void at 2:02 PM, until it enters Sagittarius at 4:10 PM.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 10
Moon finds Venus by square in the early morning hours, but the real story today is Mercury’s move into Virgo soon after, and the Sun’s opposition to Chiron. This is the peak of Chiron’s yearly cycle of interaction with the Sun and begins the culmination of the clarifying process we’re so deeply involved in.
Now in its dignity, Mercury will help us get things straight. If you notice an urge to get organized, that’s where it’s coming from. We have 19 days to use this energy before it fades into a more lackadaisical space in Libra. The Moon squares Saturn in the morning—you weren’t planning to take the day off, were you?
MONDAY, AUGUST 11
It’s all about the Moon today. We’ll float into work with it all figured out as the Moon trines the Sun. But by noon, Moon square Uranus brings up some new possibilities. Moon's sextile to Neptune a little later suggests that waiting rather than acting will make the right direction evident, but we have to take the initiative to make it happen, as it squares Mars.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 12
Once again we get to sleep off the Moon’s void period (even though, according to Lilly, we can use the Moon when it’s void in Taurus, Cancer, Sagittarius, or Pisces). Although the Moon loses some of its mojo when it enters Capricorn, it’s trines all the way down, as it reflects the glow of Mercury, Venus, and Saturn in Virgo. This gives us a day of maximum productivity that is hard to beat: no obstacles, nothing but net. As many of the planets move toward harmonious interconnections, the Moon anticipates their kismet and carries their light one to another today and tomorrow. The activities of today will feed into those of the coming two weeks, as Mercury and Venus conjoin Saturn, trine Jupiter, then oppose Uranus. Then these events will seed those of the next three years as the impacts and benefits of the Saturn-Uranus opposition culminate in our lives.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 13
What could be better! Yesterday’s harmonies culminate in another opportunity period as the Moon conjoins Jupiter and sextiles Uranus. The Moon also carries Jupiter’s light to Uranus (with Mercury, Venus, and the Sun to follow), in anticipation of their waning sextile occurring this fall. This will spur innovations based on previously developed skills, processes, and products. What have you developed since 1994 that you can use to feed new enterprises and projects?
THURSDAY, AUGUST 14
Moon goes void of course at 10:09 AM, lasting until 3:56 PM when it enters Aquarius. This is a good day to finish up activities, do your filing, and take care of tasks or activities where you want your action to be the end of the matter (like filing your taxes). Once the Moon enters Aquarius, it is in “eclipse mode,” as this is the sign in which the Full Moon Lunar Eclipse will occur.
Once again, a quincunx confounds our efforts at straightforward action, this time between the Sun and Uranus. Use this creative Leo-Pisces energy to brainstorm initiatives and solutions.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 15
The eclipse energy begins to intensify as the Sun opposes Neptune and Moon moves toward the Aquarian cluster. Today Mercury reaches Saturn, bringing fears and industry to the fore. Use these energies to spur your organizational juices—make a plan, but avoid the temptation to project into the future with hard deadlines and high ideals, because these are the source of anxiety. Plan ahead but live in the moment.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 16
Eclipse Day is here! The planetary action starts at 11:24 AM with the Moon conjoining Neptune. The Full Moon Lunar Eclipse occurs at 24º 21' Leo-Aquarius at 2:16 PM. It is a partial eclipse, visible primarily in the southern hemisphere. It is not visible in the US because it occurs when the Moon is obscured behind the body of the Earth (i.e., during the day). We will feel it nonetheless. Key to our experiences is the series of oppositions we’ve been having between Leo and Aquarius. Now that we are receiving the maximum energy focus in these signs and on these planets, we have maximum perspective on them, deepened even more by the interruption of the expected lunar reflection.
With a lunar eclipse, we should see the full, round moon shining on us—but we don’t. We miss that peak moment. This bright reflection into our subconscious mind disrupts our instincts this time. It permits the conscious mind and solar purpose to have full sway, and we are impelled forward by these “higher” impulses. We are able to perceive a deeper purpose, a stronger direction, and we are likely to see a longer stretch of the path ahead than just the part of it that we’ll travel over the next two weeks of this lunar cycle. We'll not only see a larger task; we'll feel as though we must take it on.
There is a way to make the challenges work in our lives, with the Sun in a trine to Pluto. Set for Washington, DC, this is supported by Jupiter rising, although it suggests that results will be delayed until early September. Venus is making an exact trine to Jupiter as the eclipse is fading, a very powerful harmonious support for relationships and financial gain. There is a troubling exact square from Mars to Pluto that perfects late tonight. Set in DC’s ninth house, this could suggest an aggressive act set in foreign lands. These contacts suggest a choice between diplomacy or war. The Moon is void of course from 10:14 PM until 0:46 AM on Sunday. This will mute the effects of the Mars-Pluto contact.
The Sabian Symbol for 25 Aquarius is “a butterfly struggles to emerge from the chrysalis and it seems that the right wing is more perfectly formed” (Marc Edmund Jones’s imagery). Rudhyar’s interpretation deems this “the ability to develop . . . ahead of normal evolution.” It is another image that speaks to the new beginning we are eager to embrace, even if it is difficult.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 17
The eclipse and Mars’s square to Pluto spill over to today and lend a potential for explosiveness that is hard to deny. Tempers will be running hotter over the weekend, but today’s Mercury trine to Jupiter is highly beneficial. Later in the day, the Moon square Saturn urges self-limitation.
MONDAY, AUGUST 18
Mutability rules the day, as the Moon in mutable Pisces contacts the remaining planets in mutable signs: Mercury, Venus, and Uranus. This highlights the challenges of tradition versus innovation and presages again our experiences of the coming three years. Moon sextile Jupiter softens the energy and gives us a way to use the mutable contacts to our benefit.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 19
Mars enters Libra, the sign of its detriment, just after 3 AM. When Mars is in Libra, it tends to weaken our desire for peace and diplomacy, so conflicts can occur. The Moon is void for a short time today in Pisces, but it’s in a performing sign and over for many of us before we rise: the void period starts at 4:41 and runs until 7:10 AM. By 7:22 AM, the day’s contacts are finished, but we may still feel sparks in the air from the Moon’s square to Pluto and opposition to Mars. This brings back the volatility of the weekend’s events, and if there were any major events, there may be aftershocks early today.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 20
We’ll be feeling more adventurous, as the day starts bright and early with Moon squaring Jupiter. There’ll be no fear to stop us with the Sun’s trine to Pluto providing a protective blanket all day long. The Moon’s sextile to Neptune at midday grants the opportunity to use our imaginations in a productive manner. Mercury and Venus make four quincunxes between them, to Chiron and the North Node, making us more acutely aware of what we have yet to heal within ourselves.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 21
Mercury has been gaining ground on Venus all month, and he finally catches her this morning. For a couple of weeks they are traveling companions and share their planetary contacts. This is a bonus for us, as heart and mind are naturally conjoined in our nature, making decisions easier and life more enjoyable. Take a long coffee break from 9:53 to 11:38, the Moon’s void period before entering Taurus.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 22
At 11:02 AM, the Sun enters Virgo, the sign of the Grain Goddess. It’s time for the early harvest and the first tinge of autumn as the nights begin to cool. Mercury opposes Uranus, startling us into a new realization, yet Moon trines to Saturn, Jupiter, and Venus give the day a blissful feeling.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 23
Aspects abound today, bringing new developments and lots of activity. The most noteworthy is the Venus opposition to Uranus, suggesting surprising (and possibly quite exciting) changes in relationship. This is also the day of the last quarter lunation, when the Moon makes its waning square to the Sun at 1º 12' Gemini (4:49 PM). The eclipse energy is winding down, but its effects will continue on for six months or more in some form. The Sun and Moon stand alone in their positions, but the Sun is again angular in the Washington DC chart. This highlights the role of the leader, who may be involved in deal-making.
The Sabian Symbol for 2 Gemini is, “Santa Claus furtively filling stockings hanging in front of the fireplace,” a rewarded faith in spiritual blessings. May those blessings shower on all Earth’s beings.
The Moon is void of course from 2:20 AM to 2:48 PM, but as it is in the performing sign of Taurus, our actions will bring positive results. Mercury and Venus continue their pas de deux, quincunxing Neptune in tandem today and tomorrow. We can use this to find the holes in our plans and ensure that our projects really will work.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 24
Sunday brings us a lone contact, a square between Moon and Saturn in the morning. We may find it desirable to spend the morning alone or in contemplation, but later we’ll feel more sociable.
MONDAY, AUGUST 25
Lunar aspects fill the day, yet the Moon still brings us a void of course period to let us catch our breath between 2:52 and 5:18 PM. The contacts emphasize the mutable planets again, increasing still more our awareness of what Saturn-Uranus’s growing connectivity will bring us.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 26
The Moon in Cancer creates a T-square with Mars in Libra and Jupiter in Capricorn throughout the day. This increases the tension to take action, even if it’s not in our best interest. A Moon sextile to Saturn will slow us down.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 27
Still in Cancer, the Moon makes all harmonious contacts today—to Uranus, Venus, and Mercury. Mercury’s last hurrah in Virgo comes in the form of a square to Pluto, creating tension in thought and communication that results in deeper understanding. Moon is void of course from 5:13 PM, until it enters Leo at 7:51.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 28
We start the day with a languid sextile between the Moon in Leo and Mars in Libra. Mercury doesn’t help, as it’s void of course until it enters lazy Libra at 7:50 PM. It’s not that Libra isn’t ambitious, it’s just that it would rather someone else did the work.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 29
Venus square Pluto adds intensity early in the day, but it fades as dusk draws near. Still, it’s best to go easy in interpersonal contacts. This doesn’t mean to excuse inexcusable behavior, only to wait until it suits you to give your feedback. Harmonious Moon aspects to Neptune and Pluto remind us of the power of hidden forces and give us the chance to direct their flow for our benefit. Moon is void of course from 8:44 to 11:18 PM.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 30
Changes in perspective and new beginnings are the theme of the day, as Venus enters Libra, the sign of its rulership, and we get another New Moon. This New Moon, at 12:58 PM and at 7º 48' Virgo, is dominated by connections that have yet to coagulate. They will come in a week’s time or more, but this lunar start is filled with hope and peace. In Washington, DC, Eris is the only angular planet. Eris challenges us to achieve the reconciliation of competing and inimical forces. It draws us to love our enemies by understanding them. This, in the heart of the US election compaign, could be a time of healing, even if the healing is not immediately evident.
The Sabian Symbol for the degree of the New Moon, at 8 Virgo, is: “A five-year-old child takes a first dancing lesson” (Rudhyar’s imagery). This suggests “learning to use one’s capacity for emotional self-expression according to cultural standards.” It is also a merging of visual, emotional, auditory, and kinesthetic expressions, or the integration of our nature.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 31
Moon opposing Uranus, the day's only aspect, will flow smoothly if we are not attached to outcomes.