April 2010 Pluto retrograde

This month sees two planets turn retrograde. A planet is said to be in retrograde motion when it appears to travel backwards from our earthly perspective. All the planets do this periodically and the faster moving bodies do it more frequently. The Sun and Moon, also known as the Luminaries are the exception and always move in a direct or forward motion. Astrologically a planet in retrograde will express itself in a more inward and personal way.
Mercury will be in a retro phase from 18 April through to 11 May. Mercury is the planet of communication, acting like quicksilver, fast and hard to pin down. It also rules local travel and our thinking process. Although it has become popular to expect everything to go wrong during a Mercury retro phase this is far from the truth of the event. The slowing down and backward motion provides us with an important chance to re-evaluate, re-negotiate or re-consider where we might otherwise have pressed ahead only to have to return to it later. Use this phase to catch up with the paperwork.
The slow moving Pluto is also about to turn retrograde, 7 April through to 14 September. The nature of this heavyweight ‘planet’ is to purify and transform all that’s not working towards our best interests. It does this from within and will often bring to light previously unrecognised problems that have been blocking our progress. Pluto acts as a purging agent and can sometimes feel uncomfortable. We are often quite attached to the things, habits, beliefs, relationships or structures that need to be cleared out to make way for a new and improved version! This is a great time to undertake any kind of psychological therapy, diet cleanse or detox programme. Pluto turning retrograde in Capricorn will remind us that our outer world is only as good as our inner world and that there is work to be done. Specifically it will show us where things are not working within our social systems, governments, financial and other institutions as a result of our collective human failings. Though we may have already seen the result of failures in our social structures we may not have seen much change in their way of operating. This important retrograde period is a big ‘reality check’ and will initiate a deep reconsideration about the long term sustainability of these organisations. Attention will have to be given to our personal social responsibilities and obligations to the wider community. During this Pluto retrograde phase we will see the beginnings of necessary change at the very grass roots of our society.

Astrology for March 2010

The Month starts in the wake of the “full on” Full Moon of February. With the Sun conjunct mighty Jupiter there was the feeling of it all being a bit extreme. Big events grabbed our attention and seemed to bowl us along as the high energy reached a peak. The rest of the month looks like it will be quite eventful too. A whole new wave of energy is released as Mars begins its forward motion again on the 10th. This fiery planet represents our drive towards our goals, desires and achievement. Whilst Mars, our warrior energy has been moving backwards there has been the need to postpone things or wait with some impatience. There maybe reason to be pleased that you didn’t push forward as the chance to re assess situations now proves its usefulness. Try to use the days around the 10th when Mars is at a standstill to gather your resources and don’t allow frustrations to turn into confrontations. People with planets in the first degree of the fixed signs, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius and Taurus are particularly affected. As we move towards the New Moon on the 15th life might seem to be buzzing with news, ideas, conversation and revelation. Both Mercury and Uranus join up with the Sun Moon combination to form a very sparky dynamic in mystical Pisces. Mercury is quicksilver and always flitting from one thing to another, making connections and bringing new information whilst Uranus can act like a lightning bolt and give “eureka” moments. Expect fast witty exchanges as the whirlwind energy whips up new thoughts and exciting future plans. More new beginnings are possible as the Sun makes its annual entry into the first cardinal sign of Aries at the Spring Equinox on 20 March. The start of the new season is marked by a tense combination of planets that echo the transforming qualities of the whole year. Both Mercury and Uranus together with the Sun receive strong challenging aspects from Pluto and Saturn. To get the best from these powerful influences remain centred and avoid being drawn into arguments of ideology or conflicts of interest. Use the energy to tap into a creative stream of inspired thought whilst testing insights with sound reason. If you can reach up to embrace the “bigger picture” rather than focus on personal trivia, then you have achieved something worthwhile.

Astrology for February 2010

Mars and Saturn are known as the two “malefics” in traditional astrology. This is partly because they are the planets most likely to cause us trouble. Both are currently in retrograde, or seeming to travel backwards. Mars changes to forward motion once more in early March whilst Saturn turns again at the end of May. This is a period when we have to stop trying to make “stuff happen” and review what has already occurred. If we try to push ahead with our projects, deals or enterprises, chances are we will have to return to the planning stage soon anyway. Saturn represents business generally, rules, plans, strategy, structure, “the system” and authority. This is our chance to press pause and take stock. Rethink your plans and renegotiate your contracts or commitments now. Rewrite rules and amend regulations. Repair structures etc. Mars as the planet of action, retrograde, means we can examine our past actions and reconsider the consequences. This gives us the benefit of hindsight whilst we can still do something about it. Personal energy is at a low point and our focus is inwards. If we don’t like the mess we find ourselves in or the restrictions that “bad” decisions have placed on us then these few weeks are our time to work out a new strategy so we can do it differently when Mars and Saturn start to move forward again.
Saturn and Mars act as a backdrop to this month whilst the highlights occur at the two major Moon phases. The Sun conjuncts Neptune at the New Moon on 14 February. This might add a romantic glow to St Valentines day. Neptune can blurr the edges of our perception for good or bad. Joined with the Sun which is our vitality and essence or identity we can become disorientated, confused or just a bit woolly. The New Moon is the start of a new cycle and a good time to set a new course but it might not bode well for clear forward direction. Yet Neptune can also blurr distinctions in a beneficial way, dissolving boundaries that set us apart form others. A great deal of compassion or empathy can be experienced now. Placed in altruistic Aquarius we could see people moved to various humanitarian acts of kindness. We can afford to be fairly optimistic with the great benefic Jupiter, now very happy in its own sign, Pisces. The Sun moves to join Jupiter at the Full Moon phase on 28 February. Expansive Jupiter conjoined with the brilliance of the Sun at a time which is a natural climax in the Sun-Moon cycle could mark a major moment. Expect it to be big and bold. Jupiter is intrepid in its determination to move into new territory and will sometimes be carried forward on a wave of righteous belief in its cause. The energy will be vibrant and expectations grand. It’s certainly a good moment to manifest some of your highest ideals.