Maya del Mar's Daykeeper Journal: Astrology, Consciousness and Transformation

October 6

Mercury direct

October 9
Pallas Athena

October 10

October 11

October 20

O C T O B E R   2 0 0 2   R E T R O G R A D E   W A T C H

Retrograde Watch
by Maya del Mar

Planetary directional changes are signals to change our mode of action. There are five changes this month, more than usual. They will keep us on our toes figuring out whether to move out or pull back. The last change is Neptune moving direct on October 20, together with a volatile Moon in Aries. GW is absolutely poised to fight, and this Neptune signal is apt to be a major step in his very long-planned war on Iraq.

Mercury turns direct on October 6, together with the New Moon in Libra. However, this time we do not have a sudden lifting of the starting gate.
Mercury turned retrograde September 14 on the U.S. Saturn in Libra. Saturn signifies the Administration. This is a significant degree. It was the degree of Mercury rising at the 9-11 attack, and it is the degree of the New Moon on October 6. Furthermore, it is the degree of Black Hole Nemesis. (See accompanying article by Alex Miller-Mignone.)

Mercury backed up in Libra, while the Administration, facing protests from the world, wavered about how best to promote their Iraq invasion. In the meantime the public had a chance to review the situation, and people in hordes made their disapproval known to their Congresspeople.

On October 2 Mercury backs up into Virgo, where we can really analyze the situation. There it squares Saturn in late Gemini. Saturn really puts the brakes on Mercury’s tendency to move, to get things going. Mercury is square Saturn as it turns direct, and Saturn is serious and realistic. In fact, Mercury squares Saturn from October 2-11. This is a very long square because when a planet is stationing, it moves slowly. Not until Mercury re-enters Libra on October 11 will things flow. Since Mercury starts out on its direct journey slowed down by Saturn, it is likely that the entire coming four-month Mercury cycle will be slow. In Virgo, we can expect thorough analyses of all situations. Virgo also relates to the armed forces.

It’s interesting that on that fateful election night, November 7, 2000, just as the polls closed, Mercury was stationary direct at the very end of Libra. Sun will transit that degree this month, on October 22-23. Now we have GW working again with a stationary direct Mercury, this time with a strong Saturn influence.

Pallas Athena turns direct in Aquarius, opposite Neptune, on October 9. She turned retrograde in late Aquarius, opposite Uranus, on June 13, when the ABM treaty expired. Pallas is the strategist. Many many governmental moves destructive to life and liberty occurred then, and have been continuing at breakneck pace behind the scenes since. Two of the biggest are the construction of Star Wars and the specific planning and setting up of the war on Iraq (more like genocide than war).

Neptune is a major player in the U.S. plan for world dominance, and Pallas’ strategy can now guide it directly. Pallas Athena in Scorpio was prominent in Bush’s Inauguration chart. Defense is her special bailiwick.

Pallas turned retrograde opposing Uranus, absorbing current Uranian lessons in high tech. She is turning direct opposing Neptune, where her defensive vision can be expressed. She makes very clear the nature of the Bush Administration’s Aquarian vision. But that is not the only vision around.

Venus turns retrograde in mid-Scorpio on October 10. She will turn direct again on November 21 in the first degree of Scorpio. Scorpio is an extreme sign. It goes down to the depths and dredges up the sludge—and the treasure as well. Scorpio tends to see the worst side of things, and Venus is not very happy under Scorpio’s influence. Altogether Venus is in Scorpio for three months (September, October, and November) instead of her usual three weeks in a sign. Extremists can have a heyday during this period. Desire, greed, jealousy and revenge can get out of hand.

The last time Venus was retrograde in Scorpio was in autumn 1994, during the election which brought in the Republican-Religious Right landslide, with Newt Gingrich. Revenge against the Democrats was a major motivating force then. At that time the U.S. progressed Saturn turned retrograde in Scorpio, where it will be for over a century. Retrograde Saturn itself, reaching for the past, is profoundly conservative. It is still in early Scorpio, and this month’s Scorpio Venus will be hanging around the U.S. progressed Scorpio Saturn for most of November and the beginning of December. Saturn in Scorpio can be quite ruthless. Expect no quarter from the Saturn-ruled U.S. Administration.

See this month’s Book Corner for more commentary on retrograde Venus.

Saturn turns retrograde on October 11 at 30 Gemini. He will turn direct on February 22-23. Saturn represents the framework, the structure, the authority. Think of the skeleton. It is our own inner authority, and it is the authorities and structures in our lives. It is law and order. Saturn grounds us and keeps us here on earth. It is gravity.

Saturn always acts slowly and thoroughly, and it does not mind traveling retrograde. Quicksilver Gemini can be difficult for Saturn, and the retrograde turn will give Saturn more time to assimilate Gemini’s constant input.

We experienced Saturn retrograde in Gemini in late 2001 and early 2002. During that time all kinds of things—including outlawed land mines—were being dropped by the U.S. on Afghanistan, and our civil liberties were being shredded. Saturn can be a tough taskmaster. Slow-moving Saturn is another indicator of a difficult autumn.

And last but by no means least, Neptune turns direct in Aquarius on October 20. I have written a great deal about nebulous Neptune over these months. Neptune rules oil, it is prominent in the U.S. chart, and Neptune has been outstanding in many of the last two years’ mundane charts. Transiting Neptune in Aquarius has just come into the public arena in GW’s chart. It will be there for the rest of his life. It also opposes his Pluto now, infusing him with visions of power.

Neptune can fuel the glorious, the sublime, the fanatic, the confused, and the crazy. With Neptune in Bush’s seventh house, he is now (and for the next decade) attracting those energies, as well as projecting Neptune’s denial and clouding of reality. Neptune is visionary, but it needs some help, like Saturn, to come down to earth. (GW does not have them related in his chart.)

Neptune is the veil of illusion. It is the glamours of the world which entice us into losing ourselves. It is associated with advertising and public relations, which have a long and successful history in the U.S. Propaganda is its domain. Neptune peddles dreams and myths, not substance.

Now, when it turns direct, Neptune will have free reign for the next five months. It turns direct with great expectations. It is connecting with expansive Jupiter in the royal sign of Leo, manipulative Venus in the power sign of Scorpio, and Pallas Athena, who is a whiz at defensive strategy, in Aquarius.

Neptune has a lot to work with. Venus intensely desires that oil and power, Jupiter feels entitled to it and has the will to get it, and Pallas Athena has the smarts to figure out how to do it.

We can, however, substitute our own intense desires, which are probably not for oil and power, and use these same energies to manifest our own visions. The heavens give us all the same energies to work with. We can choose our intent, which directs those energies. We can, in fact, use the Bush people as an example of the power of clear and strong intent.

Suppose our intent is for social justice and respect for all life. This autumn is a fine time to actively work for it, in our own lives and on whatever fronts we can. This is Saturn—doing the work.