“Once in a blue Moon.” We will have this treat to watch in the sky on August 30, at 7° 25’ Pisces, at 6:36 p.m. Pacific time. It’s the second Full Moon in the month of August. It’ll also be a Super Moon in that the Moon will be traveling exceptionally close to the earth and will appear larger than usual.
When the Moon is Full in Pisces, the Sun is in the opposite sign, Virgo. Both watery Pisces and earthy Virgo have to do with service, though in very different ways. Virgoan concerns are with the nuts-and-bolts details of life, doing things scrupulously, with attention to detail. Pisces, by contrast, colors outside the lines. It’s big and not terribly discriminating. Virgo’s about minutiae; Pisces is about infinity. What would one be without the other? As with all Full Moon times, the practice called for is balance.
The most prominent aspect in play at this lunation is the Moon’s conjunction with Saturn. Saturn, the force of growth, maturity, and limits—which can include hardships and the words “no” and “stop”—is in Pisces from 2023 to 2026. It’s a curious sign for Saturn to traverse because the Piscean tendency is one of boundarilessness. How can you contain the uncontainable?
Saturn is currently in one of its frequent periods of retrograde motion, a time when a planet’s force is no less potent but is more introspective. The Moon represents deep emotion, old habits and needs. In the watery waves of Pisces so close to Saturn, this Full Moon evokes nostalgia for the past and maybe more than a touch of melancholy. Solitude is good medicine. And, with Saturn also opposite the Sun in diligent Virgo, it’s also a time to channel feelings of compassion brought by the Pisces Moon into something specific, useful, and enduring.
After it reaches fullness on August 30, the Moon will make several fast aspects. On August 31, the Moon will make a quick opposition to Mercury—a good time to watch one’s words. Then the Moon will be sextile to Uranus, and something emotionally startling may surface. Then by night time, the Moon will conjoin Neptune, highlighting imagination. Moon transits are quick and bright. These transits, in particular, blend the elements of water (Pisces) with earth (Mercury in Virgo and Uranus in Taurus) lending a feeling of fecundity.
Mercury right now is in one of its periods of retrograde motion, in its home earth sign of Virgo. With Mercury retrograde, astrologers are in the habit of telling everyone to do re-words: review, revise, reflect, etc. This week, though, I read an article by veteran astrologer Frederick Woodruff who writes that, no, the point is not so much to re-do or re-member as it is to simply pay attention. I appreciate this. After all, Mercury is the force of mental and perceptual processes. In myth, Mercury/Hermes is a traveler and a deal-maker. Mercury Rx in Virgo, in particular, is a message to pay attention to earthly details. This need not mean looking backward. It does imply reciprocity: paying or giving homage in order to gain greater awareness.
Mercury at this time is applying to form a harmonious trine with Jupiter, one of the two planetary rulers of the Pisces Full Moon. Neptune is modern astrology’s outer planet ruler for Pisces, but traditionally, it’s Jupiter that rules Pisces. Both Neptune and Jupiter make sense as Pisces’ rulers because they are forces of expansiveness. Jupiter is known as a power of beneficence, good fortune, and opportunity. (Where Saturn says “stop,” Jupiter says “go.”)
Gratefully, Jupiter is traveling in the fixed earthiness of Taurus all this year, and it’s prominent at this lunation. Jupiter is widely trine to the Virgo Sun and widely sextile to the Pisces Moon. In other words, Jupiter, the Great Benefic, facilitates grounding at this Full Moon. If the Moon in Pisces is like a vast sea of undulating waves, Jupiter in Taurus is like the heavy anchor of a ship arriving to safe harbor. The anchor sinks down deep, allowing the ship to settle, and stay still.
Blessings for the Pisces Full Moon!