Friday, 18 November 2011

Astrology for November (Part 2)

Welcome to part 2 of Astroair’s preview of this month’s main celestial events. I hope November has been good to you so far.

Mercury and Venus have now settled into idealistic, philosophical Sag and are joined by the Sun on the 22nd, closely followed by a Sagittarius Solar Eclipse on the 25th. Action planet Mars, however, is bucking the Sagittarian trend, by entering analytic Virgo for a long stay. For more click here.

November 20: Sun Squares Neptune

The Sun’s final cosmic gift before it moves from Scorpio to Sagittarius is a tense square to mystical Neptune.


Whenever Neptune touches the Sun by square, we are invited to question our goals. Is what we are trying to achieve worthy of us, or are we merely trying to feed our ego?  Perhaps you experience an ego disappointment now, but remember that sometimes we need to let our ego dissolve so we can get back to the root of what we really need and who we really are.

If you have been doing too much, this is a time (including a day either side of the 20th) when you could feel wiped out. Listen to what your body and intuition is telling you and take a rest if you can.

Paying extra attention to your dreams and fantasies can provide you with deep insights, because these are helpful energies for connecting with the collective unconscious. However, be careful if your urge to escape from yourself/your ego involves indulging in drugs, alcohol or other addictive substances or activities.

November 22: Sun Enters Sagittarius

There's a sense of spirit and adventure when the Sun’s in the fiery sign of Sagittarius. However, unlike the pioneering 'me first' spirit of Aries and the fiercely loyal but ego-centric 'look at me' fire of Leo, the Sagittarian fire quest is one which takes this sign above and beyond, pushing further onwards and upwards in its search for meaning and its vision of the future.

Sagittarius is the great explorer of the zodiac, reaching out to far flung places, of the world and of the mind. Represented by the Centaur it is the only sign with a mythical creature as its glyph, reminding us that he will go as far as the heavens themselves in order to complete his quest. As the saying goes: Fools rush in where angels fear to tread!

Yes, Sagittarius can seem foolhardy or slapdash or downright irresponsible, but what the rest of us sometimes forget is that Sag always has one foot in the future and one eye on the big picture. This panoramic view means that he very often misses the finer details of what's right in front of him, but on the whole this big picture approach tends to work well for Sagittarius. After all, somebody must hold the grand vision for the rest of us.

With jovial Jupiter as its ruler, Sagittarius often seems blessed with good luck, but maybe it's just that he simply gets away with things more easily than the rest of us. Perhaps we let him get away with it because we understand that Sag is one of the most generous and forgiving signs and therefore forgive him all the more easily because of that.

Oh and they’re never shy to speak up. Click here to read what some very famous Sagittarians have to say for themselves.

November 22: Sun Trine Uranus and Mars Trine Pluto

The first thing the Sun does in Sag is form a fire trine to Uranus in Aries on the 23rd. This alignment offers us the opportunity to think big, to revolutionise our thinking, to find new ways of doing things. There’s a renewed sense of optimism and enthusiasm about the future if you choose to tap into it. Think outside the box and expect the unexpected.

At the same time Mars in Virgo makes an earth trine to Pluto in Capricorn. This is a gentle reminder to think about and plan for the practical realities before you jump headfirst into anything. This alignment provides the impetus to get the job done, whatever the job may be. Tangible results are your reward if you’re willing to invest enough hard graft into your mission.

November 24: Mercury retrograde in Sagittarius

For my money, Mercury retrograde is an astrological phenomenon that has a bark worse than its bite. It is though, worth taking extra care when doing ‘mercurial’ things during the retrograde. This includes all types of communication, learning, thinking, travelling, commerce, negotiation and general to-ing and fro-ing.  The common advice is to think twice, double check everything and avoid signing any important contracts, if possible. As this is a Sagittarian Mercury retrograde, we should also be mindful of opening our mouths without thinking first as Sag can be very tactless at times. Overall, I think this retrograde can make us a bit clumsy (physically and mentally), so take extra care. Legal issues could drag on or get re-dragged up now. Long distance travel may cause a few hiccups and study revision might be in order for some.

Mercury turns retrograde on November 24 at 20 degrees Sagittarius. It turns around on December 14 at 4 degrees Sagittarius. It remains in the shadow of its retrograde (re-covering the degrees it’s already passed through) until December 31.

November 25 (24 in PST time): New Moon in Sagittarius (Partial Solar Eclipse)

This month’s New Moon is a powerful one because it’s a partial solar eclipse. All New Moons represent a fresh start, the beginning of a new cycle, but none more so than an eclipsed one. So what wisdom can we hope to gain from this Sagittarius eclipse? First of all the Sun and Moon are in good company, because communication planet Mercury (freshly retrograde), love planet Venus and the karmic North Node are also in the sign of the wise, expansive, ‘see the bigger perspective’ Archer. Perhaps we are being urged to think bigger, to put our faith and love in something bigger than ourselves? Maybe we are reminded that as one phase ends, another is waiting to start? It is up to us, individually and as a collective to ensure that the fresh start is a positive one.

The eclipse occurs at 2 degrees and 36 minute of Sagittarius, so if you have planets or points at 0-4 degrees of Sagittarius or Gemini, the eclipse makes a direct contact with your chart and you may feel it more strongly (get your chart at www.alabe.com). If your birthday falls on 24th or 25th November, this could be a very significant year for you. For more on eclipses see Working withEclipses 

November 26: Venus enters Capricorn (then squares Uranus and trines Jupiter)

Somehow, Venus in Capricorn doesn’t sound like a very cuddly, affectionate placement does it? Remember though, that Capricorn is one of the sensuous earth signs. While Venus in Capricorn’s affection is given cautiously, when it is given, it’s serious, genuine and for keeps.

When Venus squares impulsive Uranus on the 27th, the urge may be to detach yourself from relationship commitment. But before you turn cold on the one you love, try injecting a little excitement into things, it might be just the boost you need. With Jupiter in super sensual Taurus making a trine to Venus at the same time, it should be easier to inject a bit of playful physicality into your love life to counteract the more serious side of things. This trine is also positive for financial partnerships, but with Uranus in the mix, things could get a little unpredictable. Staying practical and down to earth and maintaining a good sense of humour should see you through nicely.

Venus is in Capricorn until December 20.

November 27: Venus squares Uranus and trines Jupiter
November 2: Venus enters Sagittarius
November 2: Mercury Enters Sagittarius
November 9: Neptune Direct
November 10: Chiron Direct
November 10/11: Mars Enters Virgo
November 16: Mars trines Jupiter
See Part 1 for the above alignments:
http://mandilockley.blogspot.com/2011/11/astrology-for-november-part-1.html
November 20: Sun squares Neptune
November 22: Sun enters Sagittarius
November 23: Sun trines Uranus            
November 23: Mars trines Pluto
November 24: Mercury stations retrograde
November 25: New Moon in Sagittarius (Partial Solar Eclipse)
November 26: Venus enters Capricorn
November 27: Venus squares Uranus and trines Jupiter

With love, Mandi
www.mandilockley.com

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Sunday, 6 November 2011

Uranus-Pluto and Our Changing World

Change is a fact of life, both on the personal and the collective level. This is an undeniable truth. Yet all too often when change comes, instead of accepting it, we resist, dig in our heels and work our asses off to restore the status quo and get back to business as usual, even if the status quo clearly isn’t working for us anymore.  To date, this has been the response to the global economic crisis, but the more the force of inevitable change is resisted, the deeper we’ll fall into the abyss.

Those who follow the motions and patterns of the planets have a reliable and useful perspective from which to observe the world and the changes that occur within it. This is because, through history, astrologers have observed that certain planetary patterns and alignments coincide with certain themes and events playing out in history*. From this knowledge comes a useful tool for predicting when and where change is coming and what form that change might take. If we look at the alignments that are coinciding with the current global economic crisis, a very telling picture emerges, a picture indicating that we are undergoing a long process of deep, disruptive, but necessary transformation.
Despite all the warning signs of the ‘credit crunch’ which followed years of easy credit, questionable practices in the financial sector and the build up of massive personal and national debts, in 2008 the world was shocked by the collapse/near collapse of some of the globe’s biggest financial institutions. Shoring them up with public money ultimately meant that, in the main, those institutions and those that run them (part of the 1%, as defined by the Occupy Movement) were free to carry on with business as usual. Meanwhile, the 99% (the world’s ordinary people) were presented with the bill. Recession set in, followed by slow, almost stagnant recovery, high unemployment, state implemented austerity measures, heavily indebted governments and the near certainty of double dip recession.

Also in 2008, Pluto moved out of the sign of Sagittarius and into the sign of Capricorn, where it will stay until 2023. Pluto moves slowly, taking 248 years to return to the same spot in the sky, so when Pluto changes signs it’s a big deal and we can reliably predict that collective change will occur, according to the themes symbolised by the sign Pluto is in.  
Don’t let Pluto’s demotion to dwarf planet fool you, Plutonic change is dark and dirty and takes no prisoners. It involves a purging of that which has outstayed its welcome. It is the cosmic transformer which deals with issues that are above and beyond our personal will. It does this by unearthing our collective shadows and making us face our primal fears. If we don’t embrace Plutonic change it will take us by force.

So what are the themes of Pluto in Capricorn? First a brief summary of the themes of Pluto in Sagittarius (1995-2008): this period was about growth without sufficient boundaries, controls or accountability. It was about overconfidence and the spread of globalism. We heard a lot about economic buoyancy, boom and bubbles while Pluto was in Sagittarius. Pluto was trying to warn us that bubbles eventually burst (such as the dotcom bubble which began in 1995 and dramatically burst in 2000) and that under our current capitalist system a boom always comes before a bust. Global free market capitalism was spiralling out of control. Pluto’s sign also reflects who we collectively choose as our enemies. With Sagittarius symbolising the foreign, it’s not surprising that our biggest real or perceived threat was the foreign terrorist. This fear had us take our eye off enemies closer to home. Under Pluto in Capricorn these ‘enemies’ have been exposed.
Pluto in Capricorn symbolises the shadow side of corporations, imbedded societal structures, governments, plutocrats and authority figures (the 1%). These are the new ‘enemies’. These are the systems that need to change and transform. If they do not change on their own, or do not change fast enough or deeply enough, they will be forced to change and much (more) global suffering will be inevitable.  The boom and the bubbles of 1995-2008 have gone for good. Growth has been stopped in its tracks and the bust has well and truly arrived. Those who currently hold all the power are doing everything they can to uphold the status quo and get things back to the Pluto in Sagittarius days. Well, I have a message for them. Pluto in Sagittarius is not coming back, at least not in our lifetime. Rather than growth without boundaries, Pluto in Capricorn is all about boundaries and about accountability and accepting responsibility for our mistakes. Collectively, we must act with extreme caution, for Pluto in Capricorn heaps upon us the full might of karma for our actions. It also speaks of the boundaries of nations, a topic very much currently to the fore with the Greece/Eurozone crisis.

Pluto in Capricorn is also about resistance and we can clearly see how the 1% are resisting the inevitable collapse of the current model of capitalism. They lack the motivation to see another way because they simply don’t want things to change, they can’t see how they will profit from doing things differently. They will not give up their power easily.
The 99% though, can use the power of resistance to say no, to question and to oppose, to suggest an alternative. The 99% can be a powerful vehicle for positive collective transformation. 

Since 2007 an exciting, powerful and incredibly disruptive planetary alignment has been forming. Rebellious Uranus has been squaring up to Pluto in Capricorn. Uranus’ energies have been compared to those of the mythical Prometheus, who stole the fire from the gods and gave it to man. Combined with Pluto, Uranus ignites revolutionary impulses and upsets the status quo. This planetary combination has been associated with mass rebellion against the establishment, revolutions, civil rights movements and radical social and political change. Below is a list of events that coincided with some of the Uranus-Pluto alignments of the past. Reading through the lists you will see the same themes occurring again and again, building through time:
The 1643-1654 alignment: the English Revolution, part of a wave of revolutions and rebellions across Europe; the emergence of the radical Puritans, the Roundheads, the Levellers and the Quakers; the forced abdication and execution of Charles I.

1787-1798: the French Revolution; the earliest emergence of modern feminism (Mary Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication on the Right of Women); in the US, France and Britain, the first widespread calls for the abolition of slavery, along with the Haitian slave revolution and the freeing of slaves in the French colonies.
1816-1824: revolutions across much of South and Latin America including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil and Venezuela; revolutions and revolts in Spain, Portugal, Italy and France.

1845-1856: revolutionary uprisings in most European capitals (1848-49) including Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Rome, Budapest, Prague; the abrupt overthrow of a number of governments throughout Europe; Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (The Communist Manifesto); upheavals in China; Japan, India and the Ottoman Empire; the emergence of the women’s suffrage movement in the US; the peak of abolitionist activism in the US; Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin; Thoreau’s influential essay On the Duty of Civil Disobedience.

1896-1907: the founding of the major socialist parties in England, the US, Russia and France; the beginnings of modern Communism; the emergence of the militant women’s movement (Emmeline Pankhurst); Booker T. Washington’s calls for social and educational reform for blacks; the Boxer Revolution in China; the Russian Revolution of 1905; the emergence of Lenin and Trotsky; the founding of independence movements including the World Zionist Organisation and Sinn Fein; the influential political writings of Leo Tolstoy; Gandhi’s struggle for Indian Rights in South Africa (his methods influenced by the writings of Tolstoy and Thoreau).
1928-1937: the Spanish Civil War; a global upsurge in radical socialist movements; the empowerment of labour unions in the US; economic upheavals including the Great Depression, which informed new economic theories, most notably Keynesian economics which informed much western economic decision making up until the late seventies; the protest music of Woody Guthrie and co. which went on to inspire the protest music of Dylan etc. during the next major Uranus-Pluto alignment.

1960-1972: the evolution of radical socialism; the non-violent civil disobedience movements employed by Martin Luther King and the anti-war protests ( inspired by Gandhi); the widespread emergence of the women’s lib movement (Millett, Greer, Lessing, Steinem); the culmination of the black civil rights movement in the US (Martin Luther King Jr. Malcolm X and the Civil Rights Acts of 1965 and 1968); the resistance activities of Nelson Mandela and the ANC in South Africa; the rising popularity of Marxist revolutionary leaders and their ideas including Fidel Castro, Che Guevara and Ho Chi Minh; Mao’s Little Red Book.
The ongoing 2007-2020 alignment (exact between 2012-15): a resurgence in Keynesian economic theory in response to the global financial crisis of 2007/8 (which advocates active monetary and fiscal policy making by the government in order to stabilize the economy); the Arab Spring including revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya and ongoing civil uprisings in other countries including Bahrain, Syria]and Yemen;  a wave of strikes, riots, protests and civil unrest throughout Europe and the US; the global Occupy Movement, advocating peaceful protest, a new manifestation of the non-violent civil disobedience movements that occurred under previous alignments.

So what’s next? This is only the beginning for the current Uranus-Pluto alignment, which doesn’t make its first exact connection until June 2012. Between now and 2020, the planetary alignments indicate that we are likely to see the economic situation getting worse if the same-old, same-old solutions are applied.
I predict that, in response, the Occupy Movement will grow and develop, with other movements springing up worldwide. New and existing radical political groups (from both ends of the political spectrum) are likely to grow in voice and influence, but in particular there will be a new interest in radical socialism. More revolutions and mass uprising are inevitable, not ruling out European countries such as Greece, Spain, Italy or even the UK. Friction between European countries is also more than possible, caused by tensions over the EU’s role as a central controlling force. I will not be surprised if the Euro collapses by or before 2020. The EU as a body will look very different, as more and more EU countries reclaim their national independence. Overall, cries for a fair, just, democratic world will be so loud it will not be possible to ignore them.

We should expect the unexpected and rule out nothing, even that which currently seems impossible.  The only inevitability is that by the time 2020 comes around our world will be a very different place. To get there in good shape, we need to break free from the old way of doing things. Those in power are refusing to let go, but they do not seem to realise they are sailing on the proverbial Titanic. When the ship goes down, it is up to the 99% to seize the opportunity to replace the old with a new society, based on true democracy and fairness. We must continue to build democratic communities from the grassroots up, to provide a positive model for the years to come. At the same time, we need to do whatever we can to free the world’s precious resources from corporate control and demand collective ownership of the earth we walk upon.
*This phenomenon follows the ancient Greek Neo-Platonic idea that the same patterns are reproduced at all levels, from the largest (the macrocosm or universe-level) down to the smallest level (the microcosm).

References: historical correlations from Cosmos and Psyche, Intimations of New World View, Chapter 4.  Author: Professor Richard Tarnas. Published by Viking Penguin, 2006.
With love, Mandi

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Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Astrology for November ~ Part 1

Welcome to November, that time of the year when (in the Northern hemisphere), the nights are long and the days are short.  The Sun is in the deep, probing, mysterious sign of Scorpio, making it easy to believe that the veil between the worlds is thin at this time of year...
...However, from early November, Mercury and Venus move into idealistic, philosophical Sagittarius, that more open sign. These pave the way for the Sun’s move into Sag on the 22nd and a Sagittarius Solar Eclipse on the 25th.
November 2: Venus and Mercury enter Sagittarius
Venus in Sagittarius promotes generosity, enthusiasm and free-spiritedness in all our relationships. After the seductive, mysteriousness of Venus in Scorpio, Venus is now demanding openness and a full on expression of your affection for that special someone.
Mercury in Sagittarius is the truth-saying placement. Sometimes you can be too honest and direct under this transit, so don’t forget to consider the other person’s feelings before opening your mouth! It’s a time for broad mindedness, idealistic thinking and grand notions.
Use Mercury and Venus in Sagittarius to open up and tell your special someone exactly how you feel about them because now is not the time to keep them guessing! Plan a romantic adventure, connect with others who share your beliefs or debate with those who hold differing beliefs. Explore new ways of connecting on all levels, intellectually, emotionally and romantically.
Venus is in Sagittarius until November 26
Mercury is in Sagittarius until January 2012 (this is a longer than usual transit because Mercury is retrograde from November 24 to December 14.
November 9 and 10: Neptune and Chiron turn direct
On June 3, Neptune in Pisces turned retrograde, moving back into Aquarius in August. On November 9, it starts to move forward once again and will re-enter Pisces in early February 2012.
Chiron in Pisces, which also turned retrograde in June, moves forwards from 0 degrees Pisces on November 10.
If you have planets or angles anywhere between 27 degrees of the fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) and 1-2 degrees of the mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces), these two planets turning around at the same time will touch your chart, so you should be able to feel the Piscean/Neptunian/Chironic themes playing out in your life quite strongly now and in the weeks/months to follow. (By the way, you can get your chart for free at www.alabe.com)
These themes include a heightened awareness of compassion, suffering and empathy; a desire to indulge in escapism and fantasy; feeling wiped out; feeling deceived, disillusioned or disappointed; feeling ‘lost at sea’; boundary issues; heightened imagination; a deeper appreciation of art and music; spiritual and mystical experiences; creative inspiration; increased sensitivity on any level; feeling under the weather; emotional healing experiences; maverick urges, possibly unfocussed. Because Chiron and Neptune have been travelling closely in tandem since 2010 (and have been widely conjunct since 2007), these feelings may have been bubbling under for some time. Now though, is the time to pay some attention to them and consider what they are trying to tell you about yourself and where you are at in your life.
This is a time to learn that your (perceived) weaknesses, can in fact be your strengths, because by facing your ‘weaknesses’ over the last year or more, you have become wise and have a gift to share with the world. It’s also a time to pay extra attention to your dreams and fantasies. Perhaps they can help point the way forward if you’re feeling the urge to dive beneath surface reality and enrich your life with deeper, more meaningful experiences? Remember, we have almost three more months of Neptune in Aquarius, the sign of community, brotherhood, humanitarianism and rebellion, so these themes will also come to the fore now for final resolution, if you are ready and willing to submit to the call to help.    
For more on the themes of Chiron in Pisces, see Chiron in Pisces: Water Over Rocks and for an explanation of the themes of Neptune in Pisces, see Neptune in Pisces Miscellanea.

November 10: Full Moon in Taurus
A Full Moon, because it is an opposition aspect, strives for balance. In order to find the balance, we must first seek to common ground. What Scorpio (the Sun’s sign) and Taurus (the Moon’s sign) have in common are a concern with money, control, possession and sexuality. In essence, Taurus and Scorpio oppositions ask us to balance what we desire and what we are attached to on the emotional level with what we feel we need and what we work hard to keep and maintain on the physical material level.
We all need to feel emotionally and materially secure, but perhaps we are feeling insecure in these areas under this Full Moon. Because Taurus and Scorpio are fixed signs, our response may be to cling on very tight to what, or who, we’ve got. This is the point where we can tip over into the shadow side of Taurus and Scorpio – fiscal and emotional miserliness, manipulative behaviour and a stubborn resistance to any kind of change, even good change.
During this bright Moon, remember that what we truly own will never leave us, so we don’t need to cling. If our roots are solid, we can allow branches to sway a little in the winds of change. We may even learn to enjoy the experience and the lessons it can bring.
This Full Moon also coincides with Neptune and Chiron moving direct and Mars' move into Virgo. Read the write ups on these - above and below - as this Full Moon is sure to highlight their themes.
*November 10/11: Mars enters Virgo
Mars leaves the proud, dramatic and often overbearing sign of Leo and enters the steadier, quieter sign of Virgo. Mars in Virgo urges us to put our energy into practical and useful tasks. It invites us to think twice about indulging in rash and reckless behaviour and allow ourselves the time to carefully mull over exactly how we should put our plans into action. On the downside, Mars in Virgo energy can make us over-critical and perfectionist, so try to find a balance between just going for it and taking time to work out whether the end result will be worth it.
Because Mars turns retrograde in Virgo between February and April 2012, this is an especially long transit, lasting until early July 2012. This makes it a great time to focus on working towards longer terms goals. List out everything you want to achieve. It’s easy to scatter and splinter your energies with Mars in Virgo, so when you have that list, you would be well advised to cross off a number – if not most - of those goals, so you can focus on the important ones. The discriminating nature of Mars in Virgo should help you make up decide which ones are important.
While Mars is in Virgo, your exercise routine should focus on improving your all round health (rather than on achieving the ‘body beautiful’). Punishing, ‘no pain, no gain’ exercise is not the way forward now. Instead, focus on work-outs that benefit the mind as well as the body, such as yoga, pilates and tai chi. Balance good exercise with healthy food and rest. This is a good Mars sign for those of you who would like to lose a little weight through sensible, manageable lifestyle changes.
Virgo is also the sign of service and helpfulness. Small acts of kindness and support really can add up to make a huge difference. Something to ponder on and act upon during Mars’ tenure in Virgo.
Mars is in Virgo until July 3 2012 and is retrograde in Virgo from January 24 to April 14 2012.
November 16: Mars trines Jupiter

Re-read the above piece about Mars entering Virgo... this easy trine between Mars and Jupiter in practical Taurus provides just the positive boost you need to get those Mars in Virgo goals off the ground and the staying power to follow through.
November's astro-action
November 2: Venus enters Sagittarius
November 2: Mercury enters Sagittarius
November 9: Neptune turns direct
November 10: Chiron turns direct
November 10: Full Moon in Taurus


November 10/11: Mars enters Virgo
November 16: Mars in Virgo trine Jupiter in Taurus
November 20: Sun squares Neptune (coming in part 2)

November 22: Sun enters Sagittarius (coming in part 2)

November 23: Sun trines Uranus (coming in part 2)     

November 23: Mars trines Pluto (coming in part 2)

November 24: Mercury stations retrograde (coming in part 2)

November 25: New Moon in Sagittarius, a partial Solar Eclipse (coming in part 2)

November 26: Venus enters Capricorn (coming in part 2)

November 27: Venus squares Uranus and trines Jupiter (coming in part 2)

*Where two dates are given, use the earlier date in US times zones and the later date in European/Asian time zones.

Wishing you a very healthy and happy November.  Come back mid month for Part 2 of November’s update or better still, subscribe below to receive it in your inbox.
With love, Mandi
Click for November’s Moon Phases

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Your Wheel of Fortune & Other News

Next up in The Academy of Astrology UK's has launched an exciting new series of mini-lectures: Wednesday 28th June: Mandi Lockley ...