Astrologer Pam Younghans writes this weekly astrological journal based on planetary influences, and offers perspectives and insights to assist you in making the best use of current energies. This column is not intended as prediction. Your own experience will be more specifically defined by transits to your personal chart.
Highlighted Aspects for This Week
All times listed are Pacific Daylight Time. For Greenwich Mean Time, add 7 hours.
TUE: Sun quincunx Mars
WED: Venus quincunx Neptune, Sun enters Virgo
FRI: Sun quincunx Chiron
SAT: Sun trine Uranus, Jupiter sequiquadrate Chiron, Sun trine Saturn
SUN: Full Moon 4:56 a.m. PDT, Venus square Pluto, Mercury quincunx Neptune
THE WAVES of emotional energy have been profound since the Solar Eclipse on August 11. The Jupiter-Neptune trine (exact today, August 19) has been fueling the swells -- and our sensitivity to the ebb and flow has been heightened due to so many planets currently being retrograde.
This week, the lunar cycle that began with that New Moon eclipse continues to unfold, reaching its crescendo with next Sunday's Full Moon in Pisces. Leading up to that event, we have plenty of planetary activity to keep us busy.
THIS APPEARS to be a week of adjustments, given how many quincunx aspects are in effect. A quincunx occurs when two planets are 150 degrees apart and in incompatible signs. The aspect is like having one foot on deep sand and one on pavement, and trying to walk with an even gait. Since it's virtually impossible to accomplish that, we must figure out new ways to ambulate.
For instance, on Tuesday, we have the Sun in Leo quincunx Mars in Capricorn. The Leo Sun wants to move like fire -- dancing, dramatic, expressive, and living in the moment. But Mars in earthy Capricorn wants to move slowly and purposefully, with the focus on the goal that lies ahead. And, being retrograde, Mars is actually quite reticent to move forward at all right now. Our challenge is to somehow incorporate the best of both approaches, without ignoring either or getting sidetracked by the conundrum.
ASTROLOGER Bil Tierney explains that "The quincunx pinpoints how and where we tend to drain forces in a haphazard, non-productive fashion. Its basic role is that of breaking down and removing those non-effectual attitudes that interfere with our ongoing growth."
With quincunxes spread throughout the week, it seems we'll be adjusting our attitudes in more than one area:
* The Venus-Neptune quincunx on Wednesday brings relationship themes into the mix, with the question being how to both insist on fairness (Venus in Libra) and yet let go of demands (Neptune in Pisces).
* Friday's Sun-Chiron quincunx reveals the need to be productive and efficient (Sun in Virgo), while also giving ourselves the time for important personal healing (Chiron in Aries).
* And with the Mercury-Neptune quincunx next Sunday, we'll need to figure out ways to honor our desire to make an impact with our words (Mercury in Leo) while surrendering our expectations for specific outcomes (Neptune in Pisces).
NEXT SATURDAY, the Virgo Sun forms an earth grand trine with Uranus in Taurus and Saturn in Capricorn. This can be a stabilizing influence -- greatly needed right now! -- that can help us create new, inspired forms that support healing and growth.
At the same time, however, there's a challenging Jupiter-Chiron aspect in effect. This aspect increases emotional reactivity and may cause us to question everyone's motivations, including our own. Plus, the influence of a Venus-Pluto square is building on Saturday (exact midday on Sunday), which is also suspicious and even jealous in nature, but can ultimately bring us to places of greater honesty and intimacy in our relationships.
SUNDAY'S FULL MOON occurs at 4:56 a.m. PDT (11:56 a.m. GMT), at 3°12′ Pisces. With this being the Full Moon following a Solar Eclipse, it has greater import than most such lunations. It is aligned with two fixed stars: Sadalmelik and Fomalhaut.
Fomalhaut is the better known of these two stars, being the Watcher of the South and one of the four Royal Stars of Persia. Astrologer Roderick Kidston tells us that this is "a contradictory star, sometimes very helpful but sometimes not so much; when ornery, it can play out as exaggerated emotional responses. It is at its best when expressing altruism and goodwill, and assists people to make truly inspiring achievements. It tends to work out most constructively when manifesting in spiritual ways; its finely balanced sensitivities don't always work easily in the material realm."
KIDSTON describes the star Sadalmelik as the "magic elf or Santa's helper" to the mighty Fomalhaut, and says that this lesser-known star helps us manage the powerful emotions that Fomalhaut can evoke. He writes that "Sadalmelik connects with the ancient virtue of prudence. The quiet caution, acumen and self-discipline of this star combine to offer splendid help in turning around the variable fortunes ascribed to Fomalhaut, and bringing out the best in both stars."
It appears we will continue to work with heightened emotions over the coming week, and that these will be woven into our Full Moon experience. But, keep in mind that guidance is telling us that we will best use this energy to inspire our spiritual practice and in service to others -- very Piscean answers to the question of "What do I do with all of these feelings?"
THE OMEGA/CHANDRA symbols for this Full Moon confirm this advice from the fixed stars. Channeled by John Sandbach, these are symbolic images for each of the 360 degrees of the zodiac. Here are the ones for the degree of next Sunday's lunation:
* Omega: "Rustic folk gather many types of wildflowers for a celebration": A blending of the energies of nature that manifests as a lushness of expression. Everything done and entered into with a feeling of great abundance of possibility and opportunity.
* Chandra: "Mushrooms springing up everywhere": Many problems can be solved simply by seeking out the exact type of environment needed. This principle is how so much negativity has come to be accumulated on planet earth – these negative forces have been carefully and systematically cultivated. And so, positive, spiritual forces may be cultivated in the same way.
Sandbach explains our solution when working with this degree of Pisces:
"Make changes or modifications in various aspects of our reality, rather than allowing too many questions to cause doubt and hesitancy. Approach everything indirectly. Be, in a sense, more concerned with the atmosphere around a thing rather than the thing itself. The results of this can be immensely fruitful."
I FIND the Omega symbol to resonate with the exuberant influence of Fomalhaut, and the Chandra symbol to be reminiscent of Sadalmelik’s ability to ground that energy in positive ways.
Being "more concerned with the atmosphere around a thing than the thing itself" is an exercise in maintaining a spiritual perspective. It also reminds me of Fomalhaut's counsel that "It tends to work out most constructively when manifesting in spiritual ways." And it's vital to remember that just as negativity has accumulated on the planet, so can we cultivate and grow a more positive spiritual perspective.
The playlist is set, and we have our (spiritual) dancing orders...
IF YOUR BIRTHDAY IS THIS WEEK: Your self-concept is going through many adjustments this year, as you become increasingly aware of what attitudes work and don't work in your life. This is a time of heightened self-awareness, which you can use to good advantage as you shift perspectives and alter the ways you have typically approached certain areas of your life experience. As you move through these changes, you will create greater stability in your life, and find inventive solutions to old issues.