The Full Moon takes place on April 7, 2020 at 9:34 p.m. CDT in 18° Libra. Libra is a very social sign, so it's a good time to embrace 21st century technology and have video calls and get-togethers with your friends. Obviously, phone, texting and social media are other ways to stay in touch.
The Jupiter/Pluto conjunction is prominent in the Full Moon chart. At the new moon I wrote "This conjunction could be seen then as a time when a lightning bolt of insight strikes the earth and illuminates some treasure in our unconscious mind, something that has been hidden very deep but is now revealed."
The exact date of the conjunction is April 5th, the day I'm writing this. I came across an article today which has symbols that relate to the Jupiter/Pluto conjunction and also the social expression of Full Moon in Libra:
The History of the Paris Salon (and the Radical Artists Who Subverted It)
This is a story of a revolution in art as traditional standards were overthrown by the Impressionists. In mythology, Jupiter (Zeus) ruled over laws and social order. Jupiter in astrology is also seen as a planet of expansion or freedom. Pluto is often thought of as a planet of revolution. Plus Pluto symbolizes the cycle of life, death and rebirth. This is an important cycles whether seen through the lens of art or technology.
It's important to take the symbols we see in life or read about in the media and see if they mirror the planetary patterns occurring at the same time. So take some time to think about the ways in which your life or consciousness is expanding. Or in what way your life needs to let go of a pattern from the past in order to be more creative. And how you can do that as wisely and harmoniously as possible.
I like this story because traditional art didn't die - people continue to paint realistic portraits and landscapes. But the field of visual art has continued to expand and incorporate more and more styles and techniques.
The Power in Your Solar Returns
A talk for the Northern Illinois Chapter of NCGR with Marcia Sacks
April 14, 2020 via Zoom
If you are not on the NI-NCGR email list, contact Janet Berres firstname.lastname@example.org for information on how to attend this talk
Every year the Sun returns to the location of your natal sun and a new year begins for you. The solar return chart gives a snapshot of your year ahead that can be used to plan and achieve your annual goals and resolutions. We'll start with the fundamentals of interpreting solar return charts and how changing the location where you celebrate your birthday can strengthen the positive elements of your solar return chart. Then, we'll "treasure map" your solar return with affirmations and images. Be sure to have a printout or drawing of your next solar return handy. You can Google "solar return calculator" to find a number of sites to run off your solar return chart.
This Sunday noon meditation with Sharon Steffenson was presented for the Temple of Kriya Yoga last week and has a lot of helpful techniques for healing and relaxation. Sharon is a swami of the Temple and the editor of Yoga Chicago Magazine.
The Full Moon and the Vernal Equinox both occur on March 20, 2019. The Equinox is at 4:58 pm CDT, as always with the Sun at 0° Aries. The Full Moon is at 8:42 pm CDT in 0° Libra. Equinoxes represent balance and the sign Libra represents harmony. One thing to think about at this time is how you can bring more balance and harmony into your own life.
With the Equinox and Full Moon giving emphasis to the Aries/Libra polarity here are some other things to think about. How you want to approach the next two weeks (the Full Moon time frame) or the next quarter of a year (the Equinox time frame)? Will you choose the forcefulness of Aries or the diplomacy of Libra? What works best for you - the independence of Aries or working together in partnerships like Libra?
With Mercury still retrograde, neither the decisiveness of Aries nor the Libran tendency to poll the opinions of others will have an advantage in the next few days. Important decisions that have legal implications should probably be put off until several days after Mercury goes direct on March 28.
So how has this Mercury retrograde period been for you? On March 5, the day of the Mercury retrograde we were already in the car on the expressway when we realized we left something critically important at home. We had to get to the next exit, retrograde our way back to our house on the local roads, retrieve what we needed, and then get back on the expressway. That was so totally Mercury retro that we had to laugh even though it was a time-consuming inconvenience.
Goswami Kriyananda said "Karma is forgetfulness." So even though I knew that it was Mercury retrograde, and I knew we needed to stand still for a moment and think before we walked out the door, we still got caught up in that moment of rushing out. The key point about knowing that an aspect occurred and a piece of karma triggered is that if you can rebalance right away, the piece of karma is over. Actually, laughing is a way of softening or neutralizing karma. If we'd beat ourselves up about the incident all day, we'd have been hanging onto a piece of karma that could have been over.
Here's a relevant Zen story "The Muddy Road" from the book Zen Flesh, Zen Bones by Paul Reps:
Tanzan and Ekido were once traveling together down a muddy road. A heavy rain was still falling. Coming around a bend, they met a lovely girl in a silk kimono and sash, unable to cross the intersection. 'Come on, girl,' said Tanzan at once. Lifting her in his arms, he carried her over the mud. Ekido did not speak again until that night when they reached a lodging temple. Then he no longer could restrain himself. 'We monks don't go near females.' He told Tanzan, especially not young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that?' 'I left the girl there,' said Tanzan. 'Are you still carrying her?'
Keep in mind that when Mercury goes direct on March 28 it's conjunct Neptune so extra 'forgetfulness' is possible for a day or two around the 28th. Do the best you can by communicating carefully and making lists of things to remember. If you have to 'retrograde' to fix a problem, just do it, then let it go. A few days on from March 28, projects and plans will begin to move forward again.
My article "Astrology, Yoga and Balance" is in the March/April issue of Yoga Chicago Magazine.
Goswami Kriyananda's Professional Astrology Course is distance learning at your own pace.
In the Future:
Saturday, March 23, 6:30 - 8 p.m.: Music Meditation with the Temple of Kriya Yoga Musicians at The Yoga Shop, 3830 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago
Sunday, March 31: Astrologer Lynn Ewing is giving a workshop "Retrogrades - the Big Rewind - Karma, Reincarnation, Revisioning" at Life Force Arts Center in Chicago.
Venus Retrograde - October 5 - 11° Scorpio
Yesterday, I was thinking about getting a haircut and was just about to add it to my list of errands for the day. I paused and remembered that Venus is at a stationary point, going retrograde on October 5. So if my question was, should I get a haircut, the answer is no. Why? Because Venus rules everything related to beauty and I probably wouldn't like how the haircut turned out. Also, Pluto is less than a week from its stationary point (it went direct on September 30), so still in effect. Pluto is a higher octave of Mars and Mars rules both violence and sharp objects. I thought, "I don't want a stranger with scissors that close to me right now." I'll wait a week and then go. If I was a really conscientious astrologer, I would look for a really good Venus day to get a haircut. But mostly I just try to avoid trouble :)
Everything in astrology really depends on the question you're asking. If your question applies to art, beauty or romantic love, Venus is one of the planetary symbols you would look at.
Venus is retrograde from October 5 - November 16. It is strongest a couple of days on either side of the station points. In general, Venus retrograde is a bad time for shopping for fashion. The tendency is buy things on impulse that seem to be a bargain but are not of good quality. Venus rules Libra which is the sign of the new moon so not optimal for starting new romantic relationships or business partnerships.
New Moon - Monday, October 8 - 10:46 pm CDT - 15° Libra
Libra is the astrological sign that relates to partnerships. With the Moon and Sun in Libra squaring Pluto in Capricorn in the New Moon chart there is perhaps an excess of passion in relationships, either bringing people together too quickly or breaking alliances apart. This is most intense three days before and after the new moon.
How to make best use of this energy? As an air sign Libra has a lot to do with the mind, ideas and philosophy. Take time to evaluate the way old habits in your thought patterns and assess if changes need to be made. In particular with Libra, are you too quick to pass judgement on or critique others? How quickly do you judge or criticize your own self? Watch your thoughts. Change judgmental thoughts to blessings for yourself and the world around you.
I like the following mantra for this Libra New Moon:
In Sanskrit: Om lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu
Or in English: May all beings attain peace and harmony
My Yoga Chicago article has a little bit more about this New Moon.
In the future:
October 9: Astrologer and author Ray Grasse will be speaking at the Northern Illinois Chapter of NCGR on "Decoding the Highest Planet in a Horoscope." More info at http://www.chicagolandastrology.org/news.html.
Blessings to you as we celebrate the Autumnal Equinox tonight, September 22 at 8:54 pm CDT, the first day of fall in the northern hemisphere and first day of spring in the southern hemisphere. The Autumnal Equinox occurs when the sun enters Libra, the sign of balance. For many people on earth, it’s seen as a balance point in the length of the days between day and night.
In balance, we pause for a moment to assess our progress in our personal and spiritual goals and determine what we need to do to get where we want to go.
I led a guided imagery for the equinox last Sunday at the Temple of Kriya Yoga as part of the noon meditation. It uses the colors of fall leaves to inspire and heal plus time to visualize your goals for the next few months. Here is the audio recording:
The Full Moon is on Monday, September 24, 2018 at 9:52 pm CDT in 1° Aries. This takes place just two days following the Autumnal Equinox so both those charts share many of the same aspects.
The most prominent is the powerful T-square from the Moon in Aries and the Sun in Libra to Saturn in Capricorn. Success can be found by facing into your responsibilities. Projects will be challenging in the beginning of the quarter but build momentum with time if you stick with them.
However Sun and Moon in Libra are harmonious (sextile and trine) to Mars in Aquarius: this means that friends and relationships will be helpful to us with our goals. Hanging around positive people will give us energy and motivation.
With Mars in a square aspect to Uranus, though, you might find some of the people around you to be a bit eccentric and volatile. Caution is advised at this Full Moon with driving, watching out for drivers making sudden, erratic moves. There will be plenty creative and inventive energy - be sure to write down all your wild and wonderful ideas. Wisdom asks you to wait a few days before taking action on any of them.
Saturn trines Uranus in the full moon chart. Focus on the idea of tradition and creative new ideas working harmoniously together regarding your goals and projects.
Pluto goes direct at 18° Capricorn. This station direct has an effect at least a week on either side of that date. The keyword for Pluto for spiritual seekers is transformation. It's possible to break free from old destructive patterns under Pluto aspects. Can you do this gracefully and skillfully without destroying the good things in your life? Remember the serenity prayer:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change
The courage to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference
Pluto, Neptune and Jupiter are in harmonious aspect to each other at this time meaning that both the study of philosophy and the practice of meditation will give you deep insights into the nature of reality.
The Full Moon takes place on March 31, 2018 at 7:36 a.m. CDT in 10°Libra.
This Full Moon forms a T-square with the Moon in Libra, the Sun and Mercury opposing in Aries and Mars and Saturn conjunct in Capricorn. This is a difficult but temporary aspect lasting several days before and after the full moon.
The Sun amplifies things external to you and the Moon amplifies things internal to you, so the Full Moon always has some conflict between what you're experiencing internally compared to externally. Mars and Saturn conjunct symbolizes anger and frustration. Linked to the lunation, you may find you are experiencing this anger and frustration internally and may also see it acted out by other people and situations.
What to do? Keep steady toward your goals and dreams, don't quit.
“If you get tired learn to rest, not to quit.” ~~~ Banksy
Some more advice about the Mars/Saturn conjunction (which is exact on April 2):
Don't put a bowling ball on the top shelf of the closet! This is a symbol of many other types of situations. Saturn represents things that are heavy. Mars rules the head. Be really careful.
If you do hatha yoga (or really any type of exercise) don't push to pain or past your limits at this time. Don't try new postures or movements. Move slowly, with proper placement and conscious awareness. Saturn rules the knees. Mars the muscles. Not a great time for weight-lifting in general, whether exercise or chores.
Difficult Mars/Saturn aspects often leave scars. Physical scars are a possibility so be careful with sharp objects (Mars). But remember that sharp, angry words are also Mars and scars from words said in anger can be even longer lasting than physical scars.
Positive keywords: Self-discipline; focus; steadiness of purpose.
Mantra: Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti
Om is the sound of the oneness of the universe. Shanti is the Sanskrit word for peace.
Let there be peace on every level of our being: body, mind and spirit.
You can listen to this mantra here.
In the future:
Looking forward to attending this conference! It's a wonderful opportunity to learn from some of the world's best astrology teachers, researchers and authors.
Marcia Sacks is an astrologer in the Kriya Yoga tradition.