Astrology update for May 2012

During this month and into June we see several of the important astrological events of 2012 coming into play. On May 6 the Moon reaches the point in its orbit when it’s closest to the earth, known as perigee.

Because the Moon travels around the earth in an elliptical orbit each lunar cycle it also has a point when it’s furthest away from the earth, known as apogee. Some months it is nearer or further than others.

Although 2012 is not the closest possible (the last time that happened was 1912) the actual exact time of perigee this May occurs less than two minutes before the exact Full Moon (when the Sun and Moon are completely opposite).

Whilst the energetic forces are amplified in this way we can expect stronger than usual tidal effects and exceptional weather or other geological disturbances. Plants and animals are also subject to the Moons phases. Astrologically we know the lunar cycles can affect our moods and behaviour as well as mundane events and financial markets.

With the Moon in Scorpio we can expect some intense feelings to surface along with power struggles or issues of control being exaggerated.

When the Moon is this close to earth it appears bigger. This is especially so at Moon rise on Full Moon, which you can watch on the eastern horizon as the Sun sets in the west.

The following New Moon (when the Moon and Sun occupy the same Zodiac degree) in very early Gemini occurs within 36 hours of this year’s furthest apogee. To add to the “stress” of this combination the Sun and Moon are at the same declination, which creates an eclipse as the Moon moves across the Sun.

The shadow’s path starts over China and Japan then crosses the Pacific Ocean onto the west coast of America, ending in Texas. It is these areas which will experience the strongest effect over the next months.

The planetary aspects during this phase suggest not only a new beginning, when something outworn is replaced, but also a cleansing with new alliances or relationships forming.

Neptune in watery Pisces forming a difficult square to the Sun/Moon suggests not only the potential for floods but it could also be a challenging event involving heightened emotions, particularly compassion or sorrow. Also watch out for misinformation or some form of deception.

Stabilising Saturn is strongly connected to sociable Venus whilst transforming Pluto has the feisty energy of Mars focused on it. These energies add to the forward thrust towards change and transformation along with consolidating relationships or contracts of allegiance.

As we negotiate this potent month we can anticipate an increase in the ongoing trend of major shifts or changes on every level of our lives.

The Sun moves into Gemini the sign of the twins on the 20th whilst Venus starts her apparent retrograde motion on the 15th and the pair conjunct in a spectacular and rare event in early June.

Being fast and flexible in your thinking is a Gemini trait along with the ability to reconcile a paradox, holding more than one viewpoint simultaneously and understanding the connecting relationships between, well, everything! All these skills will be an advantage in the coming months and now is the time to hone them.

The next Full Moon is at 16° Scorpio on the 6th May at 4:36 am and the next New Moon is at 1° Gemini on the 21st at 12:48 am

Planet Update – Astrology April 2012

This current Moon phase started with the New Moon on March 22 just two days after the spring equinox when the Sun moved into Aries. The dark phase of the Moon, when it reflects no light from the Sun and invisible to us, is a point of low energy with an apparent pause before the new crescent Moon becomes briefly visible once more, soon after sunset. Its reappearance marks a renewal and optimum time for initiation or beginnings. The sign of Aries is the first in the Zodiac and the movement of the Sun into that sign at equinox marks the start of the new Solar cycle. What we are experiencing now is the effect of both Lunar and Solar cycles commencing almost simultaneously in the very potent first few degrees of Aries.

Adding to the vibrancy, the two most excitable planets Uranus and Mercury were also in the first few degrees of Aries. This is giving us an exaggerated sense of stimulation and super fast pace for the weeks ahead. You may find that you have more things than usual needing your attention and probably more than you can easily manage in your allotted time. The area of life indicated by the location of Aries is in your birth chart will be most affected. This intense frantic energy should cool off a bit when the Moon becomes Full around the 6th April and the work or events of the last couple of weeks, begin to show its promise. There will finally be some sense of completion or resolution and maybe some breathing space, as the Moon comes back to the New phase on 21st.

This lively pace though, will likely continue as Mercury returns to forward motion on 4th although he doesn’t move beyond his retrograde degree until the 23rd. This release of energy should help with getting on top of all the connections, correspondence and everyday tasks that have built up. Mars in Virgo has also been retrograde since mid January and this will have stalled or thwarted putting plans into action. He turns direct once more on 14th and will pick up momentum gradually into June. Some of that frustrated energy might break loose around that time so just be aware of any potential flash points.

In the background but adding to the mix in keeping the pressure on, we see Venus move into excitable Gemini on the 3rd. Venus loves to be around others, charming and beguiling, partying and indulging, she is our most sociable planet. Mercury ruled Gemini is the sign most strongly associated with fast paced ideas, communications and changeability. Venus here is a social butterfly, making connections and passing information around, not lingering to contemplate, just enthusiastically rushing on to the next new thing. She stays in this sign for a lengthy four months and also makes her rare occultation of the Sun in mid Gemini on June 6th.

Social networking is going to be a big theme during these next months, whether its through internet media or good old fashioned social gatherings. There is a need for people to talk and exchange views. The issues that pull people together into like minded groups have to be shared and common values will need to be discussed. When messenger Mercury conjuncts with innovative Uranus in feisty Aries on 22nd we can expect some mental sparks to fly. He then makes a challenging angle to transformative Pluto on 25th. Don’t be surprised to find yourself thinking surprising new thoughts and don’t be too shocked if you find out some things are not the way you thought they were. The planets are telling us to keep up. We’re going through rapid changes and we need to adapt our thinking to match the new situation or we risk being left behind, wondering “what happened?”

The next Full Moon is at 18° Libra on the 6th April at 8:19pm and the New Moon is at 2° Taurus on the 21st at 8.20am

Planet Update March 2012

The early days of March suggest this could be a significant month. Events are likely to set quite a fast pace and keeping up with changes might be a challenge. The astrological patterns show a combination of possible flashpoints combined with some exceptionally positive potentials. During the first weeks of March if you watch the western skies soon after sunset you might get a glimpse of the evening star Venus being joined by mighty Jupiter as they get closer to their conjunction on 14th.  Known as the lesser and greater benefics their combination is a welcome sight and occurs in the ninth degree of Taurus. They are not the only planets making powerful combinations at nine degrees this month and those people who have personal planets or critical points there are likely to be affected more strongly.

On the 4th Pluto, at nine degrees of Capricorn, contacts the exact eclipse degree of July last year. The eclipse Sun/Moon completed a tense cardinal cross along with Uranus, Saturn and Pluto. Cardinal signs bring new beginnings and the stressful cross dynamic means using assertion to achieve them. Since last summer we’ve witnessed this theme being played out as people struggle for change and dominating powers attempt ever increasing control measures. During the months following an eclipse, and as planets make contact with the exact degree, events can be triggered that follow on from whatever was initiated originally. The early weeks of March could bring a strong show of force and in addition we could experience disturbance or unexpected activities in our communications as messenger Mercury combines with unpredictable Uranus in feisty Aries on both 5th and 18th.

The Full Moon on 8th completes the cycle started during the February New Moon which formed a close conjunction with Neptune. This phase is likely to find us wondering where we are going whilst feeling our way through what seems like endless chaos and contradictory or confusing information. We may have to adapt to new circumstances or adjust our thinking as events unfold. The important lesson here is to learn how to trust and follow an intuitive inner sense when all the exterior familiar landmarks or pointers are proved unreliable.

The main astrological theme of the month begins to take shape between 13th and 15th as the Jupiter Venus duo make supportive trine aspects to both Pluto and retrograde Mars creating a Grand Trine. This triangular dynamic is one of the most desirable combinations for positive potential.  The synergy of Mars with Pluto, Jupiter and Venus all in earth signs and working well with each other creates a pretty potent energy with very constructive possibilities. All these planets are at nine degrees when this stabilising aspect pattern is formed and this adds to the likelihood of a follow up to events of last summer and autumn.  Great things could be achieved during this time.  Mars whilst retrograde gives consideration before action. In combination with transforming Pluto and forward looking Jupiter the suggestion is that it’s time for a complete makeover.

The next Full Moon is at 19° Pisces on the 8th March at 9:41 am and the New Moon is at 1° Aries on the 22nd at 10:58 am

Update February 2012

This lunar month started at New Moon on January 23rd coinciding with Mars beginning its retrograde motion. Whatever started then is likely to have an impact around the Full Moon on 7th February. This date coincides with Saturn going retrograde. Saturn and Mars are traditionally known as malefics and have a tendency to be troublesome. Although these planets represent essential drives and bring about plenty of beneficial outcomes, if their energies are expressed negatively the results can be far worse than with the other planets. When a planet is retrograde it’s hard to use the energy in a positive way so they are best accessed for reflection rather than action. Saturn rules over the corporeal world and represents the limitations of material reality.
In retrograde until late June, he will highlight issues with boundaries, restrictions, imposed borders, binding contracts as well as legal, social and religious regulations. Any attempts to enforce these might just be considered a line crossed, boundary breached or unfair discipline. It’s not a good time to push forward with a business contract, impose authority or create a new organisation. Use this time to question the existing arrangements and examine plans and proposals for areas that need review and renewal.
The next few months may seem like endless austerity and conflict. Repeatedly we see how things are just not working out the way they were intended. Whilst this might be our everyday experience there is something else occurring, not so noticeable but certainly both exceptional and profound. About every 164 years Neptune moves into Pisces. As one of the outer planets its journey through the zodiac is very slow taking about 13 years in each sign. Neptune moved into Pisces briefly in April until August last year but now it will stay there until 2025. The last time was between 1847 and 1862. The outer planets are evolutionary and mark time over generations. They affect us as a group and demonstrate deep and lasting social, political and spiritual change. To understand the significance of this event we need to consider the nature of Neptune.
At home in watery Pisces, it’s associated with the unified consciousness, our inter-connectedness and all that exists beyond the physical. It transcends and dissolves boundaries. Pisces represents both the material and spiritual co-existing. Finding the balance between the two is a hard art to practice. During this period we can expect to see a movement to more inclusion, less restraint and greater compassion. Existing boundaries, barriers, separation and segregation will be seen as an unnecessary fabrication when similarity and shared experiences unite people.
As Neptune blurs distinctions and recognisable definitions there may be confusion and disorientation. Some people will find themselves in a Neptunian state of denial and delusion as they try to maintain their personal vision of life. Over the next decade we will each need to choose whether to continue to accept what we are told to believe or begin to trust in our inner senses.

The next Full Moon is at 19° Leo on the 7th February at 9:54pm and the New Moon is at 3° Pisces on the 21st February at 10:35pm

January 2012 – Mars Retrograde

As we fully enter into the New Year putting seasonal holidays behind us, the focus turns to everyday concerns once more. You may though have a niggling feeling that this year’s concerns might be anything other than “everyday”.

2012 has achieved heightened significance as the year when the world as we know it, changes. Whilst you are waiting and watching for these big changes to occur on the world stage you may not have noticed quite how much you’re changing in the privacy of your own inner life! Those who want to stay ahead of the game will have been actively making adjustments as fast as personal awareness will allow. The small personal shifts in the way we perceive things will bring about the best possible outcomes this year.

With socially minded Venus connecting with Neptune, the dissolver of boundaries, in altruistic Aquarius around the Full Moon on the 9th we are getting the message that other people really are equally important. This pair of caring planets makes a strong Air trine to stabilizing Saturn in Libra so expect greater participation in social activities that benefit the wider community. Benevolent Jupiter in down to earth Taurus is now moving forward again and sustains a supportive Earth trine to transformative Pluto through to March. This influence gives a much needed boost in the optimism department.

The big astrological story this month features feisty Mars which represents our basic survival instinct and energy for action. He is the thrust behind the desire to “have” or “achieve”. Currently traveling in modest and measured Virgo he is discerning and slow to act. Mars stays an unusually long time in this perfection seeking Earth sign, not moving into Libra until early July. Every twenty six months Mars turns retrograde. He’s now moving evermore slowly until on January 24th he’ll turn to retrace his steps, not going forward again until mid April. During this phase Mars comes closest to Earth (a phenomena known as perigee) and is visible in the night sky.

Any attempts to press forward with new ventures will likely be less effective than desired or end with unexpected outcomes. Somehow the energy required just dissipates and takes longer to regain momentum. This phase though has its benefits. Often Mars acts impulsively with a drive to achieve his goal at all costs and wins his prize through might and muscle rather than foresight and planning. Take advantage of Mars retrograde to be introspective and consider your motivations. Pay special attention to any “knee jerk” responses, defensive behavior and unconscious competitive drives. Those who don’t use the self reflective Virgo discernment may let their ambitions take control leading to an explosion of repressed anger as they cling to a desired outcome. Would be warmongers are well advised to have a rethink of their strategies now. Any aggressive action is likely to backfire badly.

For my detailed 2012 forecast visit www.katearbon.com

This Month’s New Moon is at 3° Aquarius on the 23rd January at 7:41am

December Astrology Update

The month starts with a Venus and Mars theme. The planets of love and war are giving us a reminder about what we want in life and what’s really important and we might realise they aren’t the same thing. Venus in Capricorn has her feet on the ground and wants to achieve real, tangible results. As she briefly joins Pluto on the 1st you may see some hidden desires come to light or an exposure of true values and this could change your position or understanding. The next act in this little drama is on the 2nd as the truth seeking Sagittarian Sun makes a challenging square angle to Mars in critical Virgo. As the Sun’s rays illuminate conflicting desires the clash can spark an angry response. Then some kind of resolution occurs as peace seeking Venus makes a harmonious trine to impulsive Mars on the 5th making a mutually beneficial outcome possible. These scenarios may occur in your personal life or on the world stage and may not seem significant now but there is a bigger drama unfolding that will need the support of this good will and compromise as we head into next year.
The Full Moon is the first culmination of energies coming out of the last solar eclipse on 25th November. In Gemini it will highlight issues of communication and probably mis-information or attempts to withhold the truth. Look to all the media, internet, journalism, and public speeches as the serious flaws inherent within them become apparent. Coinciding with the Full Moon the unpredictable planet Uranus starts its forward motion once more having returned to the position it was in late March. Events of unrest or promises of change and reform from back then will re- surface and there’ll likely be reason to question what we thought, or were told, was true at the time.
Mercury is also playing his part in exposing a sham that we thought was a model of free speech and access to information. The messenger planet is retrograding in Sagittarius until the 14th and many deals, contracts, promises or negotiations made since the solar eclipse will have to be re-visited as they are unlikely to suit the new conditions or hold up in the light of our recent knowledge.
The New Moon in Capricorn on 24th starts a new lunar cycle and the potential for further restructuring of our social, political and financial systems. The Sun/Moon combination joins with the powerful undermining force of Pluto and makes a stressful square angle to radical Uranus. At the same time they receive a supportive trine from expansive Jupiter in Taurus which now begins its forward journey once more. This could set off a new cycle of inflation and debt and certainly put a focus on the value of money. At the same time the mood of the masses make it clear that despite the power lust of some there is a strong force towards redistributing the resources to benefit the majority.

The next Full Moon is at 19° Gemini on the 10th December at 2:38 pm and the next New Moon is at 3° Capricorn on the 24th December at 6:07 pm

Astrology Update November 2011

After the Scorpio New Moon in October we celebrated Halloween and now in November we enter the darkest time of the year. Soon we can begin looking forward to the winter solstice and lengthening of days again.

With Mars the ‘action’ planet opposite ‘mysterious’ Neptune during the first week this month, it can feel like we are groping in the dark and things may not be what they seem so beware of deception and false information. The truth about events that have occurred in recent weeks may become clearer over time as Neptune returns to its forward motion on the 9th after four months in retrograde.

The Neptunian theme of illusions also characterises the partial Solar Eclipse on the 25th. Visible only from the extreme southern hemisphere this is the last of four Solar eclipses this year and will affect global events over the following several months. Traditional Astrology, which puts a strong emphasis on an eclipse chart for predicting the nature of world events, gives us many indications that this November event will be particularly significant.

As the Sun Moon conjunction moves into a challenging square angle to ‘passionate’ Mars whilst in a comfortable trine to ‘unpredictable’ Uranus, we can expect some kind of conflict to be triggered and a great deception is likely to be attempted by those who want to take advantage of the unfolding circumstances. Expect a lot of confusion to follow during the next few months. Peculiar or unusual events may happen but don’t believe everything you are being told or even what you think you are seeing. This lack of clarity and uncertainty could potentially bring despair if the personal disruption is particularly hard to cope with.

Meanwhile, ‘Freedom loving’ Uranus is positioned at zero degrees of Aries which is a critical point of the Zodiac and suggests a strong drive towards independence from restriction with many radical initiatives and new directions sparking conflicts of interest. The current unrest and dissatisfaction with financial inequality that’s being demonstrated around the world isn’t likely to go away for some time yet and may reach a new peak towards the months end.

The possibility of a stabilising influence comes from a grand trine in ‘reliable’ Earth signs involving Mars in Virgo, Pluto in Capricorn and Jupiter in Taurus. This could see a religious or faith based organisation combine with financial interests to propose a practical solution in an attempt to resolve current difficulties. At the same time there could be the emergence of a new spiritually motivated attitude towards both our personal resources and our social organisations that is actually grounded in reality rather than idealism.

It’s likely that another deal or treaty of some kind will be forced forward but with ‘slippery’ Mercury who rules over those affairs going into its retrograde motion on 24th there will be many more setbacks and attempts at deception before any agreement is reached and settled satisfactorily.

The next Full Moon is at 19° Taurus on the 10th November at 8:17pm and the next New Moon is at 3° Sagittarius on the 25th at 6:10am

Planet Update October 2011

As this month’s lunar phase reaches its culmination during the Full Moon in Aries it’s in opposition to Saturn. The following day our “Greater Luminary” the Sun passes over the “Lord of Time” Saturn, in Libra. This Lunar phase began with September’s New Moon in Libra beginning a process of evaluation under the sign of the scales as we’re prompted to find a balance between our personal needs, Aries, and our Libran need for relationships. Physical limitations and responsibilities come under the Sun’s spotlight as it passes over Saturn and we have to face up to some bare truths. Saturn teaches about the practical realities of life. You get the clarification needed to make a realistic plan of action for the future and by now you probably know who is on your side, and who isn’t. This is a solid place to be as we launch into the next phase of the Jupiter Pluto cycle, started in December 2007 and continuing into 2020. I wrote in this column back then of the impending “global changes in our faith and understanding regarding religious and financial authorities”. I also explained that as Pluto moved into the sign of Capricorn it “ushers in earth-shaking transformations of political structures, and the death of old political parties which have outlived their usefulness. We will likely see the collapse of outdated and decadent regimes as new systems of government rise from the ashes. In the business world many upheavals will take place as new business strategies replace the old economic views and business practices”. This month we are a third of the way through this 12 year cycle and we should have fully realised the futility of waiting for the fix that returns life to “normal”. If we haven’t already started to build an alternative lifestyle this is the final turning point and time to get on with the important work of creating something sustainable from the ground up. On October 28th Jupiter in Taurus makes a trine aspect to Pluto in Capricorn. This is the second of three exact “hits” this year. The first was during early July, the third in March 2012. The energies are positive and always easy to work with under a trine aspect. It’s an important time for us as we make the shift into a new paradigm. Pluto stays in Capricorn until 2024 and signifies a new order emerging. The sign of the sea goat represents our ambition and struggle to reach great heights of accomplishment within the limiting structure of a material world. Pluto brings about forced breakdown which ultimately results in a breakthrough into something more appropriate. Until June 2012 the Jupitarian impulse towards expanding and enhancing, expresses itself with the no-nonsense Taurean qualities of determination and purpose. In harmony with the transformative qualities of Pluto this is the time to make plans based on the reality of our circumstances. The message from the planets is that the old system doesn’t work, we have the proof now, so lets get to work and ensure that we have the essential resources we need to construct the new and improved way of organising ourselves.

The next Full Moon is at 19°Aries on the 12th October at 3:06am and the New Moon is at 4° Scorpio on the 26th at 8:57pm

Astrology Update September 2011

We start the month under the influence of the August 29th New Moon in Virgo. We can watch for the first glimpse of the slender crescent just after sunset if the skies are clear. Look for it above the horizon and just slightly to the left of where the sun set. The New Moon phase marks the beginning of the Lunar cycle which comes to its peak at the following Full Moon. This month it also falls in Virgo reinforcing the qualities of that sign. It’s a month for harvesting and reaping what we’ve sown as we move towards the vernal equinox on the 23rd. The last New Moon made a harmonious trine with both Pluto, the planet of transformation and Jupiter “the great benevolent” just as Jupiter slows to turn retrograde. It’s a time when we can make good progress in our journey towards greater understanding as Virgo lends us the qualities of discernment and refining, attention to detail, adaptability and determination. As Jupiter travels in retrograde until late December we internalise our urge towards expansion and superior knowledge and reflect on the greater meaning of recent events in our lives. The small but powerful Pluto which has been retrograde since early April turns to retread it’s steps through early Capricorn as it goes forward once more from the 16th. This release of energy might see a slow but deliberate change in the way we have been dealing with our “elephant in the room”. The reality of what was previously too painful or unacceptable to mention can no longer be ignored and has to be dealt with. We have though been on a journey and with these insights we now take a new approach and move into the final quarter of the year. The events in early August were a wake up call to what needs our urgent attention. Pluto came within one degree of the challenging square angle from Uranus which sets the theme for 2012 -2015. Pluto represents power struggles or control issues, taboo subjects as well as big business, corruption and dept. It also highlights the need to co-operate and share with another. It brings to light where we exert our personal will at the expense of others. The erratic planet Uranus encourages revolution and sometimes chaos as a means of breaking free from domination or erroneous values. The message from the planets show that we cannot continue to ignore what is creating stress in our lives. As we go through the next few years we will have to address situations where we’ve failed to take responsibility for our choices and use of resources or where we’ve offloaded the blame for our lack of physical well-being or inner peace on to someone else. This is a powerfully transformational period we’re entering and certainly not one to be afraid of.

Planet Update June 2011

2011 began with the first of the year’s four solar eclipses. Almost six months later we have the second on 1st June followed by a Lunar eclipse on 15th. Eclipses always occur in Solar/Lunar pairs within two weeks of each other. The partial Solar Eclipse can only be observed from the very northerly latitudes of China, Siberia, Canada, Iceland and Scandinavia. The later stages of the total Lunar eclipse on the 15th should be visible from Ireland just after moonrise. The Solar Eclipse is always at New Moon, and the Lunar Eclipse at Full Moon. When the New or Full Moon coincides with a celestial position known as the Moons Nodes we have an eclipse. The Moon’s North and South Nodes are the points at which the path of the Moon crosses the ecliptic, or apparent path of the Sun, each day. Astrologically these Nodes indicate the direction of our collective evolution and its significance in our personal lives. So when an eclipse occurs we can expect world events that will potentially affect us all in some way, however for most people not directly. The effect of these events though will usually have a deep, significant or life altering impact for each of us on some level. How it affects us individually depends on where in out chart the Eclipses fall.
Eclipses mean new starts and changes and a chance to break with the past. With both this month’s eclipses emphasising Mercury ruled Gemini we can expect to hear lot of new information and ideas being shared whilst being reminded there are two sides to a story. Strongly supported by a favourable angle from Saturn in Libra we can create firm foundations on which to build our ideas. There may be political agreements proposed and attempts to settle new boundaries or sanctions. We may see opposing arguments and demonstrations and subsequent negotiations. These few weeks are an excellent time to move plans forward and communicate intentions. Networking, writing and discussions are all favoured. As Saturn turns direct in motion again on June 12 we can move ahead with enthusiasm on the changes initiated at the Solar eclipse. At the Lunar eclipse on 15th the Sun joins with Mercury in Gemini and we can set our minds to implementing our goals and aspirations with some genuine optimism for the future.