The beginning of something has significance, and what happens in the sky relates to what happens on Earth. The process of individuation comes down to working with the personal planets, moving through the trends of the social planets, bridging over through Chiron, and coming to integration at the transpersonal level. Understanding these dynamic energies, as demonstrated through the ever-changing cosmic weather, allows a greater ability to live connected to purpose and meaning.
The Sun is the Invincible Spirit. So great is this universal wonder that it must come in small doses, distributed as it travels around the Zodiac over the course of a year. The Sun's position symbolizes the active presence of the Divine. The Sun enters the sign of Aries on Tuesday, March 20, 2018 at 12:16 PM EDT. This is the Vernal Equinox, the beginning of Spring, the beginning of the astrological year. New growth, new energy, new initiatives abound, as hope springs eternal.
The New Moon teaches gradualness and deliberation, and how to give birth to oneself slowly. Patience with small details makes perfect the large work, like the universe. --J. Rumi
The Moon is the Receiver. As the Sun energizes her, she receives and moves through her angular relationship with him over the course of the month. She delights in shape-shifting. She delights in the repetitive ebb and flow from night to day, from New to Full in predictable sequence. She delights in being able to portray the Sun's invincible spirit through her silver light. We see this dance every month, beginning at the New Moon, timed for the Moon's alignment with the Sun. This month's New Moon occurred on Saturday March 17, 2018 at 9:12 AM EDT. This month, look to the various healing energies around: healing words, healing waters, healing bodies and souls. Consider what Herman Melville wrote in Moby-Dick: "Yes, as every one knows, meditation and water are wedded for ever."
THE ECLIPSE SEASON 2018 (1st Quarter and 3rd Quarter of the Year) In 2018, there are three solar eclipses and two lunar eclipses, as shown below. The resonant degrees and the touch-off timeframes are listed below.
- January 31, 2018 Lunar Eclipse 11 Leo 39 (touched off April 17-26, 2018)
- February 15, 2018 Solar Eclipse 27 Aquarius 1 (touched off May-June, 2017). This is the partner to the August 21, 2017 Solar Eclipse.
- July 12, 2018 Solar Eclipse 20 Cancer 50 (touched off April-May, 2019)
- July 27, 2018 Lunar Eclipse 4 Aquarius 46 (touched off September 2018)
- August 11, 2018 Solar Eclipse 18 Leo 34 (touched off November 18-23, 2017)
Eclipse energies remain active and sensitive months before or months after, and can be touched off at various times before or after the actual event. If you have planetary placements at the degrees, you can expect some reverberations. Past 2017 hot spots are listed below.
- February 10, 2017 Lunar Eclipse 22 + Leo (touched off Oct 8-20, 2017)
- February 26, 2017 Solar Eclipse 8 + Pisces (touched off Nov. 29, 2016)
- August 7, 2017 Lunar Eclipse 15 + Aquarius (touched off Dec. 18, 2017-January 14, 2018)
- August 21, 2017 Solar Eclipse 28 + Leo (touched off May 15-25, 2017)
Mercury has 3-4 Retrograde (Rx) cycles every year, each lasting approximately 3 weeks, and each offering a period of reflection, recalibration, revision, and resolution, as Mercury and the Sun exchange the message of a particular degree of the Zodiac. Mercury, the trickster, is stationing, to turn Retrograde. This year's Retrogrades are progressive in the fire signs. The first Retrograde period begins on March 22, 2018 at 16 + Aries. (Note the resonance with the Venus cycle below. It will turn Direct again on April 15, early in the morning.
The Venus cycle is complex and mysterious, beginning while Retrograde as an Evening Star, moving through conjunctions with the Sun, and shifting from Evening Star to Morning Star, and back. When a brilliant Evening Star--calm, mature, settled, and knowing her brilliance is best seen outside the clutch of the Sun--she begins her new cycle. The current Venus cycle began on March 5, 2017 at 13+ Aries, and runs through October 5, 2018. This start degree is one to watch for the entire cycle, when contacted by other planets. Transiting Venus is currently a Direct Morning Star, and has passed this sensitive degree. On January 9, 2018, she made the Superior Conjunction with the Sun at 18 + Capricorn (and joined with Pluto), and has now disappeared for 2 months. On March 1, she reemerged as an Evening Star to shine brilliantly for 7 months, before turning Rx again in October. She is passing through mid Aries.
Mars has moved into the sign of Capricorn, joining up with Saturn at the end of the month. Exalted here, Mars shows great endurance, and with Saturn's discipline, this is a winning combination for advancing goals.
Jupiter has turned Retrograde at 23 + Scorpio on March 9, for a deep dive inward, through July 11, and back to 13 degrees. Do the inner work; do the exploring. Jupiter wants nothing less than an adventure!
Saturn is at home now, in the earthy, grounded sign of Capricorn. Mid-April, he will Retrograde at 9 +. Saturn reveals that practicalities are necessary, and structures must be built. Saturn, working with methods of time and karma, takes all prisoners if need be, and rewards authentic effort. Look to the house he is traveling through for insight into the work needed for growth and personal evolution.
URANUS, NEPTUNE, PLUTO, and the NORTH NODE: Twists and Turns
The outer planets push us towards the transpersonal realm of consciousness. The twists and turns of these bodies facilitate our evolution by disturbing peace of mind. Uranus, the Awakener, is traveling the last degrees of Aries, and will move into Taurus on May 16, sure to create some rumbling earth noise as the sky meets the ground. Nebulous Neptune is traveling Direct at 14+ Pisces. Strong in its own sign, the vicissitudes of the waters are an ever-present wonder, as it dissolves and re-imagines. Unequivocal Pluto is Direct at 20+ Capricorn, strengthening the energies of Saturn nearby and purifying all that is not truly authentic. The various plays of these outer planets have been driving home the concepts of evolution, integration, and release of entrenched, enmeshed patterns. Rudhyar describes the Nodal line as a fateful space. The North Node continues its Rx motion through the sign of Leo, now at 14 +, making a quincunx to Neptune.