Sunday, May 24, 2015

Rude, Crude Pluto in Scorpios (No, Not All of You) and Failing the North Node in Libra Lessons

I've written previously about my weekend job at the honky tonk dive bar in town. I've also written about how contact with the Pluto in Scorpio redneck crowd constantly throws my Libra/Pluto in Libra social sensibilities and consideration for others into a state of wounded shock.

Last night at the pub was no exception, and I offer this as an example of the (I would say appalling) mindset change that has happened in the span of just one decade.

The kitchen at the bar closes at 9 p.m. every night. Every night. 

Last night, a group of five Pluto in Scorpios rolled in just after 9 o'clock. For some reason, our wall clock is always set five minutes slow, so it appeared to be three minutes to 9:00. These are people who frequent the place, and they were all well aware of the kitchen's closing time. It had been a slow night, and the kitchen was already cleaned up and closed. The deep fryer and grill were off. The cook was upstairs in his living quarters preparing for a three-hour drive to the city that still had to be accomplished that night.

They asked if they could get food. I said I didn't think so and explained why. I was immediately met with hostility. "Why not? It's before 9 o'clock!" (It wasn't really, but the clock on our wall said they still had three whole minutes.) They continued to demand food in their oh-so-charming ways, so I walked around the place trying to find the cook.

I told them it didn't look as if they would get food that night because I wasn't sure where the cook was. This wasn't really that big a deal since they all live in the area and could easily have gone to their own damn homes to cook their own damn food.

One of the girls in the group works at the bar (the work ethic of this generation is a story for another time) and started giving me major attitude, throwing her weight around in front of her pals.

While I was searching for the cook, she took it upon herself to go into the kitchen and turn the deep fryer back on without my knowledge. She then told me to call the cook to come down and cook for them in an amazingly entitled and snotty tone.

Rude rednecks put a bad taste in my mouth.

Rude, entitled, Pluto in Scorpio rednecks put an absolutely foul taste in it.

After a few minutes, I called the manager on his cell phone and explained the situation. The cook came downstairs, turned everything back on, and cooked for the rude, crude crew while I gritted my teeth and waited on them as they bitched and moaned about how terrible the place was. Thankfully, the manager gave the girl a talking to about the deep fryer incident. The manager and cook finally started on their three-hour drive to the city around 10:00 p.m.

Now, here is the difference in mindset that has occurred in the span of just one generation:

I would never roll into a restaurant at closing time and hostilely demand to be served. I don't personally know anyone who would. I would make a polite request to be served, but it would be beyond me to give the waitress a hostile attitude in my attempts to get what I wanted. Actually going into the kitchen to turn on the deep fryer without permission would be so socially criminal that it would not even cross my mind.

To put it even further into context, last week, my Pluto in Leo mother was scandalized that we were going into a hardware store to buy paint (which would have to be mixed) 15 minutes before noon, as the place closes for lunch and "it's inconsiderate." (True, she does take consideration for others to an extreme with natal Neptune conjunct the South Node in Libra, but you get the idea.)

But this is the Entitlement Generation, you see, and for a large portion of this generation, previously common social rules have flown out the window. (Yes, I know this is not true for all members of this generation, but I would suggest the majority falls into this category.)

It seems much of this selfie-obsessed Entitlement Generation has skipped a) manners b) respect and consideration for others and c) social graces altogether.

But this is unwise.

These are all qualities that must be actively cultivated and mastered as the North Node of the Moon continues its transit of socially-oriented Libra. To drop the ball here is to set ourselves up for 18 years of karmic trouble on this front.

Let's just say, there's a lot of work to do from now through the completion of the North Node's transit of Libra on November 11.

It's plain to see that the social fabric has come unglued in some fairly major ways. I know every generation laments the beastliness of the younger crowd, but this is truly extreme. I generally allow a whole lot from other people. I've learned that I have to in order to get by on this planet. But when basic respect and common consideration for your fellow human beings become rare qualities to find, we're in trouble as a society. 

I will provide this reminder to readers as the North Node continues its journey through Libra:

Consciously follow the Golden Rule: do unto others as you would have others do unto you. 

Consciously set the tone for manners, social graces, and respect and consideration for others during this transit. Model these things for others who perhaps have not had them modeled adequately before. Do not allow the degradation and devaluing of these things to pull you into similar behaviours. Do not allow selfish and entitled behaviours in others to piss you off or trigger you into base behaviours yourself.

Teach kindness, respect, and consideration for others by practising these things in your own daily relations, and hold out for these standards to be met in return.

Manners are important, no matter what others, including younger generations, may mistakenly believe. Maintaining a friendly, congenial attitude toward others is important.

Focusing purely on your own desires and needs and trying to impose those on others are Aries South Node tendencies that will be unsuccessful under the current conditions. Hostility toward others when you don't get what you want will be unsuccessful. Neglecting to take the needs of others into consideration will be unsuccessful. And these will become more and more unsuccessful the closer we get to October/November 2015 and the North Node on the potent zero-degree of Libra.

With the transiting North Node in Libra, working to maintain social standards and common human decency pays big dividends on a soul level.

Take on strong social leadership to set the proper tone.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Merc Rx Re-Post: Introducing Hexagon Astrology Magazine: Sharp. Smart. Subversive.

Note: I've received word from editor-in-chief Matt Savinar that the Hexagon Astrology Magazine Kickstarter campaign is at just over 50% of its financial goal. This is great news, but we need some more juice to get it over the top. 

If you are a fan of this blog, this magazine will be right up your alley. In fact, the premier issue features three of my articles. This magazine will introduce you to astrologers and astrological perspectives that you would not find in any other publication.

Let's make this magazine a new fixture on today's astrology scene. Today's astrology scene needs Hexagon Magazine. 

There are 11 days to go on the Kickstarter campaign. If you were planning to make a pledge, please do so now and help Hexagon get its start in the world!

Hexagon Magazine Kickstarter Campaign

"Ladies of the Zodiac: It's Show Time (Astrology of the Feminine Asteroids)" by Willow in Hexagon Astrology Magazine

I'm happy to announce an exciting new astrology publication coming out this August called Hexagon Astrology Magazine. This is a high quality, cutting edge print publication being put out by editor, founder, and astrologer Matt Savinar from Sebastopol, California.

Your anarchist astro-reporter has three articles appearing in the premier issue, and there is a wealth of other rich content from a variety of writers.

There hasn't been a new astrology-based print publication on the market in North America in 30 years, so this is astrological history in the making, and I'm happy and excited to be part of it. Matt has done an incredible job. It's one smoking hot publication. Other astrology publications wouldn't touch my writing, so you know this magazine has some serious depth, integrity, and potency. Some cages are going to be rattled.

There is a Kickstarter campaign on now to help get this bad boy underway. You can pre-order copies of the magazine for a pledge of $10 (U.S.) or higher. (Delivery to Canada or the United States.) Copies will be sent out August 19, 2015 when the magazine launches, and I wouldn't doubt that the premier issue becomes an instant collector's item.

For higher Kickstarter pledges, there are all kinds of incentives including getting your name in the magazine under the acknowledgments section, receiving a steel "Founding Supporter/Patron/Financier" card, getting an advertisement in the magazine, and being invited to the official launch party.

If the Kickstarter campaign fails to reach its goal of $10,000, Matt will be taking orders for the magazine as of August 1. 

If you appreciate smart, courageous, cutting edge astrological writing, you won't want to miss this. Something this good only comes around once in a lifetime (or maybe every two or three):

Hexagon Kickstarter Campaign



A note from editor-in-chief Matt Savinar:

If fearless Willow doesn't mind I want to give a shout out to the WWA readers who contributed today. Just checked the KS campaign for Hexagon before calling it a night and several WWAers have chipped in. Thanks a ton, it is very much appreciated!


Editor-in-Chief, Hexagon
Friend of, Willow
Reader of, WWA

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Venus in Cancer Triggers the Uranus-Pluto Square

Venus in Cancer is currently triggering the Uranus-Pluto square, creating a surge of cardinal tension that propels us into new territory. This makes May 21 - 25 a potent time for positioning ourselves in relationships and money matters. Strides must be made now. New leadership must be assumed, especially social leadership and leadership within our families. The times are calling upon us.

This is a final cardinal trigger point before Venus sets up shop in colourful and passionate fire sign Leo for four months, including a retrograde period from July 25 to September 5.

As Venus in Cancer moves through the Uranus-Pluto square gauntlet, we will see status and position being cemented in strong relationships, both personal and professional. Other relationships will break down under the stress of this configuration - maybe temporarily, maybe permanently.

In times such as these, our relationships have to be downright heroic in order to go the distance.

With Venus transiting Cancer, family ties and soul ties are the glue that holds things together. There's an instinctual coming together for closeness, protection, and emotional comfort. But expect some tension as Venus opposes Pluto in Capricorn May 21 (exact 7:57 p.m. CST) and squares Uranus in Aries May 25 (11:09 a.m.). Certain habitual comfort zones are no longer available! The more we try to attach to the way things once were, the rougher this configuration will be on us.

As the opposition between Venus and Pluto tightens, true feelings and unsatisfactory power dynamics in relationships of all kinds are being pushed to the surface. Pluto wants complete integrity. It won't settle for less. So dig down deep into the raw and uncensored feelings and make your decisions from there, even when it's uncomfortable.

As the Venus-Uranus square becomes exact on May 25, a new direction becomes necessary in the way we relate to others, and this is potentially a radical new direction. Again, certain habitual comfort zones are no longer available to us. Certain habitual ways of relating will no longer work. There's an Aquarian era breeze blowing through all the nooks and crannies of our relationships, and the old constructs will not do. Venus-Uranus contacts require the advancement of human relations beyond old forms. They require relational progress and possibly even quantum leaps socially and in the way we relate to others. Take the new path, the path that feels fresher and freer, to move out of reach of old emotional behaviours and relating patterns that go nowhere.

Mercury, now retrograde in Gemini, is closing in on a conjunction to Mars in Gemini (exact May 27 at 4:37 a.m.). We're wrapping our minds around what we want now and what direction we have to take in order to get it, though this is still clouded by Mercury in retrograde motion along with Mercury-Mars squares to Neptune in Pisces. More information is required in order to fine tune our goals and directions. We won't get a clear picture of desires or necessary directions until Mercury catches back up with Mars at 13 degrees Cancer on July 15.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Thank-you, WWA Patrons and Commenters!

Taurus is a sign related to gratitude, so I'd like to take this opportunity, coming out of the Taurus New Moon last night, to thank all the patrons of this site. You keep this site running. There's no question in my mind. Many times I've wondered if I could continue this work, and your financial support has allowed me to keep going. That is no small thing. So thank-you.

With all the Mercury/Gemini influence in the astro ethers at the moment, I also want to thank all the people who have left wonderful comments over the years. These comments have also kept this site running through some bumpy-ass times, and please do not think that any of your words went to waste or went unnoticed. I appreciated it all.

I've closed the comments section for now due to some disturbing commentary and not-so-friendly energies that were coming through. I was finding some of this so disturbing that it was hard to work. I was starting to self-censor and hold myself back so that I could avoid flak from others, and this is not how I want to write. This is not how I was put on this Earth to write. And this is not how most of the readers of WWA blog want me to write. So for the time being, the comments are closed, but I do post the articles to Twitter. Feel free to leave comments there (as long as you are not an a-hole).

I believe in the power of astrology. I believe in the writing that is presented on this site. And I believe in Willow's Web.

I'm grateful that others find this site valuable, too.

I wish you many blessings for your generosity toward this little astro nook on the web!

Thank-you again.

From your anarchist astro-reporter, your Plutonic punk astrologer,


Saturday, May 16, 2015

Getting Our Hands Dirty as We Move Through the Taurus (Farmer/Rancher) New Moon

You mess with the bull, you get the horns.
Photos: Willow

The Moon is currently in exaltation in Taurus ahead of the Taurus New Moon on May 17 (10:13 p.m. CST) when the Sun and Moon will come together in conjunction at 26 degrees of the sign. This kicks off a 28-day lunar cycle coloured by themes of Taurus the Bull until June 16.

Taurus energy is rich, rustic, sensuous, earthy. It's slower-paced, grounded, and dense. It's simple, basic, and traditionally-minded. It's close to the land, close to the dirt, close to nature and to the seasonal cycles. Taurus is a sign known for its love of relaxation and simple pleasures, but it is also a sign that is not afraid of hard work. Farming and ranching would be two classic forms of rustic hard work associated with Taurus, but any job or project that requires endurance, perseverance, and a sustained effort to make progress in the physical world would classify.

The influence of Mercury, Mars, and soon the Sun (May 21) in Gemini during this Taurean lunar cycle, however, indicates that much of our hard work this month will be mental, verbal, information-related, and organizational rather than strictly grunt physical labour. This hard work is made less arduous if we can manage our stress levels, keep information flowing, and avoid overloading ourselves with too much busyness, conversation, information, worry, or social activity.

We're working to keep many balls in the air while simultaneously putting a new foundation under our feet. Keep it as simple as possible.

Taurus is the sign of the farmer, and Taurus season coincides with sowing/planting season in much of the northern hemisphere. This makes it a good time of year to turn our attention to food and to the sources of our food.

In keeping with our farming and ranching themes combined with a strong Gemini/Mercury influence, passing and receiving information about the state of our food supply are key components this month. 

This very Mercurial lunar cycle is a great time for the wider dissemination of information about the state of our food supply, the state of our farmers (including stress, depression, and mental health issues which are prevalent among farmers and ranchers), and the state of our food distribution networks.

The miserable, terrifying, and ongoing 500-year drought in California, a major food supplier for North America, is one element that must be brought more strongly into the collective psyche at this time. 

This is also a good time to talk frankly about the widespread problem of hunger on this planet (including in "rich" countries like the United States and Canada), as well as the lack of political will to alleviate this horrifying situation. Forty-two million Americans are trying to subsist on food stamps at this time. Nutrition should not be an afterthought, but this becomes the case when it's a struggle just to fill your stomach - and the stomachs of your children - on a regular basis.

The low quality of food in prisons and other institutions is another subject that must be brought more strongly into the public discourse.

The dangers of both genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and radioactivity in our food are other areas that must receive much more play in public information channels.

Multiple species of Pacific Ocean sea life along the North American West Coast continue to experience mass die-offs. These die-offs have been especially prevalent since the Fukushima nuclear disaster began in March 2011. (You can read all Willow's Web Astrology articles on Fukushima here.)

Whales, orcas, dolphins, sea lions, seals, polar bears, walruses, sea birds, owls, pelicans, turtles, crabs, sea urchins, oysters, scallops, abalone, sardines, anchovies, salmon, herring, jellyfish, sea salps, coral, krill, plankton, and others are experiencing ongoing mass die-offs, all while establishment scientists and reporters claim to be "perplexed" and "baffled" as to the cause.

All these die-offs can be researched in the search engine at

This Mercury retrograde period in Gemini (May 18 to June 11) is a good time to reconsider eating seafood, at the very least. 

As written about previously, the 2015 growing season marks the second year that genetically modified alfalfa will be planted in "demonstration plots" on Canadian soil. GM alfalfa was approved for commercial sale and growth in the United States in 2011 amidst huge opposition, and contamination of the natural alfalfa crop is already widespread.

A thorough primer I've written on the subject can be found here: Twenty GM Alfalfa "Demonstration Plots" to be Planted in Eastern Canada in 2015, "Co-existence" Plan Moving Full Speed Ahead

I also wrote about the "Stop GM Alfalfa" letters to the editor campaign recently being kicked back into gear in this post.

Since writing that article, at least three of the local weekly newspapers in this area have printed my letter.

None of the big city dailies have touched it so far.

This brings up a wider problem related to the disconnect many city people have in their minds between the food they eat and the sources of that food - sources (farmers, ranchers, labourers, transporters, distribution networks, stores) that need their awareness and support.

People in cities don't eat food that comes from farms, don't you know? Their food comes from the supermarket!

I remember trying to explain over the phone to a downtown Vancouver CBC reporter why she should care about the infiltration of genetically modified alfalfa, a staple livestock feed, a natural fertilizer, and a crop widely used in organic agriculture.

In exasperated "snotty downtown Vancouver" tone:

"You have the DOWNTOWN NEWSROOM! We don't grow alfalfa here."

It takes a lot to leave me speechless, but that pretty much did it.

When you can't get the reporters, the supposed informers of the people, to care or understand, you know you're in trouble.

(And you see one of the many, many reasons Willow defected from mainstream journalism almost immediately after graduation...)

For a quick recap on why you should care about the invisible infiltration of the natural alfalfa crop by genetically modified versions: How Genetically Modified Alfalfa Affects You

We're living in a time when people are much more concerned about what's on their cell phone screens than what's on their plates. People are "too busy" to cook real foods, to seek out local sources of food, or to research what they are putting in their (and their family's) mouths.

This has to stop. 

This Gemini-influenced Taurus lunar cycle (until June 16)  is a great time to make some changes that seem difficult-if-not-impossible but are actually just a matter of changing habits and routines - a big theme for fixed, set-in-its-ways Taurus.

Some of these changes may include:

- adopting a natural, whole foods diet and eliminating processed foods
- cooking more simply and rustically with fewer, higher quality ingredients
- getting your hands dirty with yardwork, planting a garden, planting flowers or trees, or planting a windowsill herb garden
- visiting your local Farmer's Market and loading up
- freezing or canning for the year ahead
- making the switch to more local food sources, including Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs in your area
- spreading the word about local food and local farmers
- becoming more choosy about your food sources, demanding higher quality products
- requesting non-genetically modified food products at your supermarket
- becoming more fully informed about the dangers of GMOs, chemicals, and radioactivity in food

One problem with Taurus themes is that they often seem like a whole lot of hard work - so much hard work that people give up before they even start.

Another problem with Taurus is that it can seem not very fun. The opposite of fun. Just pure, arduous non-fun.

But the antidote to this, I believe, and the way to inject more fun, is to adopt a little of the Plutonic punk "who gives a fuck?" attitude.

I was raised in (and have now returned to) a highly rural and conservative area that is absolutely dominated by traditional, old school Taurus and Cancer energy. To many of the people here, traditional Taurus (hard work, money, physical possessions) and traditional Cancer (family, kids, nuclear family unit) are all that exist! They're certainly all that "really matter."

Believe me, I know how stultifying, suffocating, infuriating, and eyeroll-worthy these traditional energies can be, all at the same time. (Especially when you add a major does of old school self-righteousness.)

But it doesn't have to be that way! Food doesn't have to be a tiring bore, and growing things doesn't have to be an intimidating chore. We can simply shrug off that version of things and strip things down to the essentials.

I'm here to remind you about the the Plutonic Punk Gardening Style, which can easily be applied to food, in general:

A Handy Guide To Plutonic Punk DIY Freestyle Gardening Under the Uranus-Pluto Square

The basic rules to follow here are:

It doesn't have to be done the way it has always been done!

You can do things your own way!

You can experiment, have fun, and do it the easiest way possible!

And finally...remember that all-encompassing Plutonic punk "fuck it" attitude whenever you need a little reminder!

Throw a few seeds in the dirt, and see what happens. Throw a handful of seeds in a pot in your windowsill, and see what happens. Visit a Farmer's Market just for the hell of it, and see what interests you.

Growing even a little of your own food or herbs is good for the soul. Seeing things grow that you planted is good for the soul. Being around plants and soil and air and sun is good for the soul.

One pot of basil in your windowsill can give you fresh herbs for the summer. Grow some more, and you can dry the leaves for use all year round.

Don't let the hardened, hardcore gardeners intimidate you. You can do it your way. You can learn as you go.

I've planted three gardens now in three consecutive years, and none of these gardens was what I would call a thriving success.

The first year we got no rain, and there was no way to water the "road allowance" garden my sweet father had made for me. See Plutonic Punk Gardening article.

The second year, I planted in a friend's backyard that got very little direct sunlight, and things did not go well.

Last year, (the third year) was the massive flood that consumed almost the entire village where I live. Talk about Plutonic rising from the dead! My garden was under water for three full days but still managed to produce a few edibles for the year.

It would be easy to get disheartened by all this, but I have farming and ranching in my blood, so of course, I'm planting again this year with optimism. (I live in "next year country," and I'm hoping this is next year!)

I'm delighted with anything that grows in my scrappy, Plutonic garden despite my black thumb (or perhaps just my questionable gardening luck).

Happy Taurus New Moon, and Happy Gardening, all, whether full-size, windowsill variety, or from Farmer's Market produce finds!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mars Joins the Mercury Retrograde in Gemini Party

Action planet Mars completes its long haul through Taurus, the sign of its detriment, entering lighter territory in Gemini at 8:40 p.m. CST tonight. The denseness, grounded effort, and slower timing of Taurus can be very frustrating for our boy Mars to endure, something it has had to do, like it or not, since entering the sign of the bull on March 31. We've really been putting our shoulders into it since then, enduring some heavy loads, and making some great progress in the physical world.

Things start to move a little more freely as Mars settles into social butterfly Gemini for a transit that lasts until June 24.

Social circulation starts to increase now. But with Mercury in an extended stay in Gemini, including retrograde period from May 18 to June 11, along with inflammatory Mars and soon the Sun, the social circuits could be humming a little too strongly!

This is an excerpt from the article "Mars Joins the Mercury Retrograde in Gemini Party." It is available in its entirety to Willow's Web Astrology patrons

Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Darkest Dark and the Lightest Light Under the Scorpio Full Moon

The Moon is now growing fuller in Libra heading to the yearly Scorpio Full Moon, exact May 3 (9:42 p.m. CST) at 13 degrees opposite the 13-degree Taurus Sun.

(This Full Moon forms an exact fixed t-square with Jupiter in Leo.)

A Full Moon in Scorpio tends to illuminate hidden feelings, underlying emotional and psychological subtext, and soulful attractions that have previously been kept on the downlow. Spicy.

We will catch glimpses of the underlying energetic web that weaves and binds us together under this Full Moon. We will come to certain realizations about people's true feelings, their true allegiances, and the power dynamics - legitimate or not - that influence their emotional foundations. Did I mention it's spicy?

There is an emotional alchemy beyond our conscious control at play here, a crackling in the air as our instincts draw us into closer quarters with certain prominent players in our lives. Aspects of emotional, psychological, sexual, or power-based reality that were previously hidden could be pushed to the surface under this Full Moon, possibly in a messy, angry, or passionate manner.

This Moon needs to feed energetically, and only close contact with particular individuals will provide the right nourishment. There are particular attractions that must be fulfilled in order to find any satisfaction here at all. This Moon desires peak emotional intensity, peak emotional experiences, but often these will be hidden and internalized.

On the other hand, there are particular attractions (and people) that must certainly be blocked and nullified under this Full Moon for our own emotional and energetic protection.

Overall, there's a sexy "emotional simmering" effect under this Scorpio Full Moon, a sense that there's a lot more going on in the way-down-deep than immediately meets the eye.

A Scorpio Moon tends to play its cards close to its chest, preferring to keep personal emotions, desires, and attractions carefully controlled, contained, and hidden from plain view. Calm on the surface even with a blazing inferno going on internally.

But the Moon growing to fullness, as it is now, pushes emotions to the overflow point, to the point where they can no longer be fully hidden, held back, or contained, and this is not just a little horrifying to privacy-loving Scorpio.

The Moon is considered to be in its fall in Scorpio. This is a sign the Moon has to work at in order to gain any comfort or mastery at all. We will all have our challenges under this Full Moon, to be sure: the desire for emotional containment and control in situations that make that quite difficult.

Buddha was said to have reached enlightenment under a Scorpio Full Moon.

And here we are, just coming out on the other side of the historic Uranus-Pluto square series, indicating epic change and transformation en masse. The Libra Moon will trigger the Uranus-Pluto square tomorrow with a square to Pluto in Capricorn (3:09 p.m.) and an opposition to Uranus in Aries (7:54 p.m.). This sets the stage, particularly in relationships and social settings.

Powerful shifts are underway. This one's dripping with potency... 

There is also a karmic inevitability tied to this Moon. The scenarios we are drawn into under this Moon, growing full in Scorpio, are magnetic at a soul level. They can't be denied. They're designed as emotional catalyst and emotional catharsis.

Family patterns and dynamics are especially ripe for triggering. The long, deep, ancestral roots of our most detrimental and damaging emotional behaviours - but also of our most cunning and effective emotional survival techniques. 

The Moon growing full in Scorpio indicates emotional eliminations, as well. Severing ties to some of those aforementioned detrimental and damaging patterns, to some of our most suffocating and stultifying familial conditioning.

We're being released from some dynamics (and people) that have tormented us - but only if we can break the comfort zone, the cradling familiarity, of that torment.

Certain emotional attachments - to lovers, exes, current flames who should be exes, situations, dynamics, even torment itself - are coming to an end here. They're burning up in the alchemical flames of Via Combusta Scorpio, leaving only a pile of ash and our dusty footprints walking away from it all.

There's a purge of the roiling, boiling, emotionally-traumatic past possible at this Full Moon, as well as a possibility for magical development of deeper and more satisfying emotional fusions.

It all depends where the crackling soul-alchemy of this Scorpio Full Moon is taking us.

Exciting, isn't it?

The Moon enters Scorpio May 2 at 7:47 p.m. and enters Sagittarius May 5 at 5:13 a.m.

Don't forget the Hexagon Astrology Magazine Kickstarter campaign: Hexagon Magazine: Smart. Sharp. Subversive. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Mercury Enters the Shadow of a Very Neptunian (And Divinely-Guided) Retrograde Period in Gemini

Photos: Willow, Renegade Heifer Photography

Mercury, considered the "winged messenger" planet of the zodiac, is associated with communication, connections, messages, transportation, the mind and intellect, and the exchange of information.

Mercury enters home sweet home Gemini on April 30 (8:00 p.m. CST), a sign it rules, indicating that mental function and the movement of information will start to flow more freely. Mercury functions well in Gemini and gets a lot done in this air sign. Communication and connections are made without much hassle, and there is a great deal of chit-chatting and networking, particularly in local neighbourhoods and societies.

The movement of Mercury into Gemini comes as a relief after the locked-in conjunction between Mercury and Mars in slower-moving Taurus that we've been experiencing since mid-April.

Mercury in Gemini enjoys "the buzz," being right in the thick of the activity and whatever is going on, and this "busy social buzzing" will be a focus through the first week of July. Mercury makes an extended stay in Gemini, including a retrograde period from May 18 to June 11, and won't enter Cancer until July 8.

Mercury enters the degrees of its retrograde shadow on May 4 following a 13-degree Scorpio Full Moon on May 3 (9:42 p.m.). The Sabian Symbol for the Scorpio Full Moon is, very fittingly, "Telephone Linemen At Work Installing New Connections." Indeed.

This means, whatever we're talking about or thinking about between May 4 and May 18 will be coming back up for review and revision during the three-week Mercury retrograde period. The conversations being had and connections being made during the first weeks of May are potent, complex, and even divinely-guided. Things are buzzing, information is flying, and further details are pouring in. But don't worry if it's all a bit much to wrap your head around - we're coming back to this. 

Mercury in Gemini will oppose Saturn Rx in Sagittarius exactly on May 3 (2:35 a.m.), just before entering the retrograde shadow. The opposition to Saturn Rx in Sagittarius indicates a challenge to hold to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth even as multiple angles on the same situation come into play. There is an ultimate truth here, no matter which crowd Mercury in Gemini happens to be playing to at the moment. Digging for this truth and holding the authority of this truth throughout the Mercury in Gemini transit are keys to successful navigation.

This will be a highly Neptunian Mercury transit, as Mercury in Gemini will be within range of a square aspect to Neptune in Pisces for two full months. Exact squares between Mercury and Neptune occur May 9, May 29, and June 23. This indicates the potential for confusion, mental chaos, and rapidly changing perspectives over the next couple months.

Mercury-Neptune contacts have a tendency to convince us of things that sound good but are not actually true. Again, in order to counteract the fantasizing, clouded thinking, and influence of "slippery tongues" under this square aspect, we are challenged to get to the truth and to hold to that truth as situations evolve.  

Mercury Retrograde Basics

Three times per year, Mercury appears to stop in the sky and then move backward for three weeks before turning direct again. This period of time is called a Mercury retrograde, and it is becoming known by more and more people – even those who are not usually interested in astrology.

Some of the most marked characteristics of Mercury retrograde periods are: confusion, plans changing, people changing their minds after receiving new information, and glitchy communication/electronics.

Mercury will station retrograde at 13 degrees Gemini on May 18 (7:49 p.m.), and it will remain retrograde until turning direct again at 4 degrees Gemini on June 11 (4:33 p.m.). Mercury will be moving slowest on the days around the stations (May 16 – 20 and June 9 – 13), and these periods of time could be particularly frustrating with confusion, mental stress, and communication breakdowns.

Traditionally, Mercury retrograde is not considered a good time to sign contracts, make deals, or solidify plans. This is a period of time when we are going back over things, coming into new information and perspective that we may have missed the first time around, and it’s very common to change our minds – sometimes more than once – during this three-week period. It’s a “thinking it over” period of time as we gather, disseminate, and process more information. For this reason, making hard-and-fast decisions during Mercury retrograde can be difficult, if not impossible. We have to be very adaptable, adjusting as perspectives and plans change.

Our minds are basically moving in reverse during Mercury retrograde, and we’re required to slow our brains down. This can be challenging during these often-frenetic times with people glued to cell phones, computers, and social media. However, Mercury retrograde is definitely not a time to push full speed ahead mentally, verbally, or with written communication, or Mercury retrograde “symptoms” will pop up.

Some of the glitchy aspects of Mercury retrograde periods include:

- Communication problems, delays, glitches, mistakes, and misinformation, both written and verbal.

- Telephone lines, internet, TV, radio, faxes, electronics, and computers can go a bit haywire: delayed connections, e-mails or texts that don’t go through, messages sent to the wrong people or messages that seem to disappear into thin air, slow or no internet connections, computer programs that refuse to work, television and telephone problems.

- Transportation problems with both private vehicles and public transportation. Transportation break-downs are more likely. Transportation may be late. We may take the wrong turn. We may receive the wrong directions. Air travel during Mercury retrograde can be especially challenging.

- People have a harder time understanding each other. We're forced to slow down or go back over things in an effort to be understood. We may have to repeat ourselves. Misunderstandings are common that have to be ironed out during or after the Mercury retrograde.

- A feeling of déjà vu: didn’t I just say that? Didn’t we already talk about this? Things come back up for review and revision during Mercury retrograde. Old conversations, connections, ideas, and information come up for a second look. We rediscover crucial information that perhaps we didn’t realize was important before, and we receive missing details so that we can move forward with plans once Mercury goes direct.

- A lot of mental processing related to what’s going on in our lives. "My brain hurts." Headaches, stiff necks, mental overload, and burnout are possible during Mercury retrogrades if we don’t consciously slow things down. Overactive minds can keep us up at night.

- General delays and a feeling that things have slowed down. Having to wait on things, especially electronics.

- Any job involving information or working with the public can be especially stressful during Mercury retrograde periods. This includes reporters, writers, teachers, administrators, data entry, waitresses, bartenders, retail, other service workers, and any job that involves some degree of public speaking or information processing.

So remember: from May 16 to June 13, slow it down a little. Don’t force a lot of new information between your ears. This is a period of review and revisiting information and details we may have missed the first time around.

The first Mercury retrograde of the year in cerebral Aquarius (January 21 - February 11) was an absolute "singed circuits" beast, so prepare yourself. Give yourself plenty of time for mental processing, and watch closely for mistakes before they wreak havoc.

This is especially the case with Mercury in Gemini in an extended square aspect to Neptune in Pisces (exact May 9, May 29, and June 23). This indicates the potential for heightened Mercury retrograde symptoms, confusion, misunderstandings, mental and psychic overwhelm, and even screwier communications than usual.

The universe is doing its best to make certain connections and to get certain information across to us via this Mercury retrograde square Neptune, and it may throw a monkey wrench or two into our plans as it does so. No worries. When you're frustrated on a personal level, allow your mind to go "transcendent big picture" in order to receive the perspective and messages flowing to you and through you. Under these influences, we're just conduits.

Understand that there may be a larger message coming through or an important connection being made when you hit a snag with the daily goings-on in your life. There may be a change in plans coming from on high that you just have to roll with. These are mutable (changeable) signs we're dealing with. Be flexible.

Mercury square Neptune for an extended period of time like this indicates openings to otherworldly insights, communication and communion with the divine, and increased psychic or telepathic abilities.

Conversations take on dual meaning - there is meaning at the daily physical level as well as at the broader spiritual level. We're dealing with very layered situations now, layered connections, layered communications.

Creative ideas and creative problem-solving are highlighted under the influence of this aspect. Music and writing, in particular, can bring people together in new ways.

Worries may dissipate under the extended influence of this Mercury-Neptune square as we surrender personal concerns to the loving higher intelligence. The information, connections, and changes in perspective coming to us via this Mercury retrograde process are out of our hands, to a great extent.

We may be more aware of signs and signals from the universe under the influence of this Mercury-Neptune square, particularly in the time periods around the exact square aspects. Dreams may be potent and prophetic. Keep a pad of paper and pen at your bedside to write things down after waking.

Under the influence of this square, we may come into a fuller understanding of the invisible connections we have to others in our local societies, and this can provide support and a sense of connection during these often-isolating times.

Everything truly is connected, but we have a stronger spiritual harmony with some. The spiritual harmony we have with others as we go about our daily lives will be more apparent than usual now. Make note of the people who seem to randomly cross your path - it likely isn't so random.

Day-to-day circulation in our local societies and neighbourhoods will be very spiritually supportive for ourselves and others over the next couple months. We will not even be fully aware of the boost we're giving others just by participating, talking, chatting, communicating, and staying socially active. A kind word or taking a genuine interest in the life of another person goes a very long way now.

Mercury in Gemini is also often a bit of a gossip (maybe more than a bit). It likes to stay up on the local news, and it likes to pass on a juicy tidbit or two, as well. Be careful with loose lips, however, as the squares to Neptune in Pisces will have a tendency to carry and disseminate information even more widely than usual. Major social cross-pollination, possibly unintentional. Don't tell anyone anything that you don't want spread around. The grapevine is extra potent until Mercury enters Cancer July 8. Saturn Rx in Sagittarius reminds us again: stick to the truth, no exaggerations.

(On a macro level, the "wide dispersion" effect of this Mercury-Neptune square is great for disseminating information far-and-wide that must get out to the masses...)

The Mercury-Neptune squares indicate the need for a little isolation, quiet time, and mental disconnect in order to process the heaps of information coming to us. This includes taking short breaks from social media and internet, despite the often-intense desire of Mercury in Gemini to stay glued to the hub of activity.  

Mercury in Gemini will form a conjunction to Mars in Gemini on May 27, and both bodies will be square Neptune in Pisces. This makes the final week of May particularly prone to the Mercury retrograde symptoms and to the potential for mental/psychic overload and "hot brains." Slow it down, and use meditation to clear your minds regularly.

Overall, the extended stay of Mercury in Gemini (including retrograde period) will bring people into closer contact with each other, making many new connections. Many of the connections forming now and over the next weeks are divinely-guided and requested by the universe at this time.

Telephone linemen are laying down new lines for the new astrological era. A different mix of people is coming together in new networks for the Aquarian era, and this mix may seem unusual, unconventional, or even downright bizarre to some of the more traditionally-minded folks.

We are connecting in new ways at the same time as we are being made more fully aware of the invisible connections that have always been there.

Neptune stations retrograde at 9 degrees Pisces on June 12, following the Mercury direct station at 4 degrees Gemini on June 11.