Wednesday, October 30, 2013

New Moon Eclipse in Scorpio Conjunct Saturn: Final Resolution of Via Combusta Themes

The New Moon eclipse falls at 11 degrees Scorpio on November 3 (6:50 a.m. CST), sandwiched in conjunction between Saturn at 13 degrees Scorpio and the North Node and Mercury, conjunct at 7 degrees Scorpio.

This is an important New Moon for a number of reasons.

As stated previously on the blog, Saturn is currently travelling through an area of Scorpio (11 to 16 degrees) to which it will not return in retrograde motion. Saturn is making only one pass through these degrees of the zodiac. This is it. So we have one kick at the cat with the themes of these degrees and one kick at the cat only.

As Saturn shoots through this zone (October 14 to November 26), we have to focus quite intently on keeping the energy in our lives just right. We are cementing a foundation now, halfway through the Saturn in Scorpio transit, that will either support our emotional and psychological health and development for the next 29 years or create hassles, issues, and karmic setbacks at various times over the next 29 years.

As usual with Saturn, we have to be quite serious about things. And in Scorpio, we have to fully understand our lessons - each and every angle - and integrate them into our selves and into our lives. No half-assing it.

If we have doubts, concerns, or intuitive misgivings about anyone or anything in our lives now, we're required to wait before making any further commitments.

From a previous post:

"If all our energetic ducks are in a row and if all the power dynamics have been worked out satisfactorily, this time period (Oct. 14 - Nov. 26) can result in some fairly easy progress with natural next steps occurring with projects and in career.

People will be moving into more structured and solid positions of authority this fall quarter, and this particularly includes positions involving shared power, money, and resources.

Under the ongoing stressors, people who have not fully earned their authority or positions, who have not set the right energetic foundations, will soon be in over their heads, however.

With Saturn conjunct the North Node this fall, be careful not to take on too much, too fast - no matter how promising things seem. The commitments we make or deepen this fall could be life changing and deeply altering for us over the long term. We must be very careful to follow our intuition down to the last twinge regarding decision and commitments made at this time, particularly involving legal contracts or money."

Not only is Saturn crossing the halfway point in the sign of Scorpio in this "single pass zone," but it is also completing its transit of the Via Combusta.

From a previous post:

"The Via Combusta is an area of the zodiac between 15 degrees Libra and 15 degrees Scorpio (except for 23 and 24 degrees Libra) known as the burning path or combustible way. Traditionally, it is associated with "unfortunate and ineffectual events."

My interpretation of the Via Combusta is humanized and comes from the point-of-view of a person experiencing life with key natal placements in this area.

When the Via Combusta is strongly highlighted, there is a feeling of running the gauntlet through sometimes seemingly insurmountable odds, collective karma, booby traps and friction, very often related to relationship dynamics, which are Libra and Scorpio territory.

There's a fire in the Via Combusta and within people with a strong Via Combusta signature that keeps them burning, burning, burning a path through life as you would imagine a shooting star burning an accelerated path through the night's sky. There's a feeling here that one has to keep going, no matter what, through the wreckage of old, crystallized layers that would keep us stultified, constricted, and unsatisfied with old wounds perpetually reopened by a revolving cast of characters.

The basic goal of the Via Combusta is to reach escape velocity. In space travel, this is the point a space shuttle reaches when its speed and momentum allow it to escape the effects of gravity pulling it back down to Earth. In the case of the Via Combusta, it's about reaching the points of awareness and pure momentum where we escape the gravity of the sticky, tricky wreckage trying to draw us back into old territory, especially involving old constructs and dynamics of relating.

But with Saturn in the Via Combusta, we have to earn the right to pass. We have to prove that we're mature enough, serious enough, and that we've taken full responsibility for moving on completely, resolving the bits of dramatic charge and the last karmic tendrils that would catch us, tempt us, and drag us back. This is escape velocity for the long-term, under the weight of Saturn."

With Saturn now completing its transit of the Via Combusta (November 21), we have to prove that we've earned our advancement beyond the sticky relational and energetic traps that could hamper us over the long run.

In Scorpio, we're dealing with dynamics that make us uncomfortable. These are dynamics that scare us, that trigger us or others, that feel as if we will never be free of them. They involved long-ingrained ruts and patterns. They are hidden, unspoken dynamics that latch onto us through ancestral lines. These are dynamics that have been the bane of many existences for generations, things that have been carried forward and carried forward - until now.

With Saturn at the tail end of the the Via Combusta zone of Scorpio, we have to be willing to eliminate every last unsatisfactory dynamic, even if that means standing alone under our own power for a while.

At this point, we have to prove ourselves unwilling to take scraps any longer. We have to prove ourselves unwilling to make due with subpar treatment or with a lack of consideration from others. And we have to confront and challenge, head-on, each instance of this shoddy treatment in order to cement new boundaries and standards in our lives. Each unsatisfactory dynamic has to be addressed and the energy of it re-directed.

Mars at 11 degrees Virgo is exactly sextile the Scorpio New Moon, and this re-direction of energy must be very precise. We must look oh-so-carefully at our own motivations and how we go about getting what we think we want. We must look at what we're doing, eliminating any areas of manipulation being used on our part to get what we think we want. And we have to get ourselves out of the reach of the manipulative grasp of others, also.

As much as possible, we have to eliminate areas where we're keeping ourselves stuck out of habit, emotional attachment, lack of awareness, or fear. With Saturn in the Pisces decan of Scorpio, we have the power now to dissolve fear-based energy patterns and ruts, propelling ourselves onto a new foundation for growth and development.

There is a breaking of habits required at this Scorpio New Moon, consciously altering our habitual emotional reactions and psychological patterns and re-training ourselves and the people in our lives accordingly.

There is an emotional and psychological regeneration coming through this Scorpio New Moon. A clearing. A weight being lifted off us. Concentrated layers we've been struggling under can be made visible, can disappear. But we have to gather all our courage and go for it.

The New Moon falls in a conjunction to Mercury and the North Node in Scorpio, and a big part of this involves analyzing and then voicing the hidden energy dynamics that leave us short, that use or drain us. We have to speak up, or it continues.

The Sun and Mercury Rx form their interior conjunction at 9 degrees Scorpio on November 1 under the Uranus-Pluto square and the Dark of the Moon. This Sun-Mercury conjunction is a little too hot to handle, as we are re-visiting the massively potent energy and themes of the Venus-Saturn-North Node conjunction of September 18.

Fall equinox (in the northern hemisphere) was one concentrated, complex, and potentially painful son-of-a-bitch. We processed a huge amount of energy through our physical, emotional, and psychic bodies at that time - and we're still processing!

Now, as the Sun and Mercury form a conjunction here along with the North Node, we are brought back into that equinox energy and will hopefully pick up some new perspective on all that has occurred since the days and nights balanced. This Sun-Mercury conjunction shines some light on the mysteries of that time period, and it all becomes even clearer as Mercury makes its final pass over the North Node in Scorpio on November 18.

We've been dealing with highly concentrated and highly karmic scenarios since Saturn entered Scorpio in October 2012.

But there is a sliver of light visible as we come out of this Scorpio New Moon, leading us into a new chapter, emotionally and psychologically liberated from many of the issues and fears that have preyed upon us.

We just have to want it more than anything - this escape velocity, this liberation, this new platform, this advancement beyond old traps.

Here, at the Via Combusta New Moon eclipse in Scorpio, we take responsibility for the energy we want in our lives, and we take responsibility for eliminating anything less.

We advance the new eclipse backdrop, dropping old scenes and setting the stage to our liking.

Since December 6, 2010, Saturn has been in the Via Combusta. It will leave this burning path November 21, 2013.

Because the advancement related to Saturn is gradual, step-by-step, and completed over the course of time, it's easy to lose sight of just how much progress we've made. When we're under Saturn's thumb, we keep our heads down, nose-to-grindstone, or we suffer the consequences.

But now, as Saturn zips through the final degrees of the Via Combusta, marking the halfway point through the sign of Scorpio, we can take a quick peek at how far we've come since December 2010, particularly in relationships.

Trust that there is a reason for your challenges - there was then, and there is now.

Saturn entered the Via Combusta so that we had the fire and the fuel to change our foundations. This is heavy, time-consuming work. We needed those potent, karmic, concentrated Via Combusta scenarios because they provided the most energy and the greatest possibility for advancement beyond old forms, particularly in relationship.

But we are soon through this burning zone. The alchemical reaction is reaching its peak. The molten lava we've been riding, shaping, and directing will soon start to cool and harden. As Saturn moves beyond the burning way, our scenarios become less fiery, less unpredictable, and less malleable. We will soon be left with the full reality and the full responsibility of what we've built.

At the time of this Scorpio New Moon eclipse and for the following 28-day lunar cycle, focus on using the last of the Via Combusta fire to set things just right in your life, in your relationships, and in your foundations. Work on the last little details, the last unresolved hotspots that could come back to bite you. Keep going until you've cleared your entire plate, and that will satisfy you and Saturn both.

Friday, October 25, 2013

A Challenging Week Ahead: Getting Out From Under the Detrimental Weight of Things

Photo: Willow

We have a potentially challenging week ahead of us October 28 to November 3.

The Mars in Virgo opposition to stationing Chiron in Pisces (exact October 30) is dropping the fog in a big way. End-of-era listlessness, confusion, lack of direction, and "aren't we done yet?" are sitting on us, dragging at us, making the material world that much more difficult. Mars in earth sign Virgo is riding our asses on the details, but one more overlooked detail on our plates could push us over the edge. This is the material realm versus the metaphysical/unseen realm, and keeping the right balance is our goal and our challenge.

Chiron stationing in Pisces makes us want to throw our hands up and weep at the state of it all. This body in this sign in this direct station has a numbing effect, an anesthetizing effect. It tells us to just roll over, pull the covers over our heads, and go back to sleep. The crushing collective psychic pain wrapped up in this placement is tough under any circumstances, but at the end of the astrological Piscean era - where we are now - it can be downright miserable. Expect people to be spacey, easily confused, and easily discouraged this upcoming week. Sensitivities of all kinds are heightened, including to food, drink, and drugs.

Then on the other end of the polarity we have peppy, active drill sergeant Mars in Virgo barking, "Buck up, for God's sake! Get in the game. Show us some drive. How little heart can you possibly have that you're just going to weep and wallow and sigh and give up?" (The full Mars in Virgo post can be found here.)

Mars in Virgo wants us in tip-top shape. No screwing around with the usual Neptunian escapes: excessive junk food, sugar, drinking, drugging, TV, music, internet, shopping, daydreaming, sports, gambling, sex - whatever diverts our attention from the matters at hand.

We can utilize some of these Neptunian escapes in tight moderation and for limited times to ease our psychic and emotional suffering this week, but we have to maintain just the right medicinal doses to keep us balanced and sane.

No going overboard, and no crossing the line, though Chiron in Pisces has us wanting to slip away - far, far away - from it all.

No slipping!

We have some sucking it up to do this week, princesses.

And nothing helps one counteract the clinging, cloying depression and inertia of Chiron in Pisces like penetrating to the sources, to the roots, of all that collective psychic pain.

Mercury retrograde is on its way to a second conjunction to Saturn in Scorpio October 29. This adds to the potential for depression, anxiety, dread, and a feeling that it's all too much for us this upcoming week. (The full Mercury in Scorpio retrograde post can be found here.)

One of the keys to getting out from under the paralyzing, suffocating weight of these times is to tunnel down beneath the Band-Aid cures, beneath the glossy, inspirational idioms, right to the roots of the situation.

There are power dynamics and scenarios and relationships creating depression for us now. Pinpointing exactly what's going on can be painful, but ultimately it is liberating. In fact, penetrating to what's really going on, beneath all the symptomatic pain and depression, is ultimately the only liberation right now.

With Mercury (conversation) coming together with Saturn (depression), people are talking about depression, and this is a good thing, for the most part.

Depression is often talked about as if it is a disease, and it certainly can be.

But depression is also a natural bio-chemical response to the state of things on this planet. This is what most people miss. Or maybe it's what they choose to gloss over because then they are not in control. Then the issues snowball. They become huge and unmanageable via the usually prescribed methods. And there is no real solution - only understanding, acceptance, love, endurance, and a willingness to stare it all down, to expose it.

One of the biggest sources of fuel for depression these days is the degree of collective denial we are living with en masse. It's emotionally upsetting, to say the very least. This is the distance between the bottom line reality on this planet and the way most people - including our so-called leaders - are living. The decisions being made and the options being presented don't have much basis in that bottom line reality. Most are living in an artificial state of manufactured reality, and there isn't much that is more depressing to a natural, biological being than living in artifice. Take a look at the animals in the zoo.

We are connected to the living beings who are suffering on this planet, and they're connected to us and to our suffering. And when that suffering is denied, avoided, glossed over, brushed aside, it adds a heaping helping of psychic disturbance to our psyches. Did you really think you were just going to go about your happy, happy life while the majority of this planet suffers under systems and structures that create and reinforce that pain? That's not how life on this round, rotating ball really works.

You remember what went on in Iraq? What's still going on? Well, the devastation and pain from that is monstrous, unimaginable, and it has ripple effects that haven't even gotten started yet. We're going to be dealing with this one for centuries.

You know the nightmare going on in Fukushima these days? That affects you. It affects all of us. It seeps into our psyches, whether we pay it any conscious heed or not. We're tied to the water on this planet, to the creatures in that water. We're tied to the workers on the Fukushima front lines who are being irradiated as I type. We're tied to the emotional and psychic states of other living beings. We can't separate ourselves from this "terrible tragedy that's happening somewhere else." We're teetering on the brink, right here, right now, and we have been since March 11, 2011.

You remember when we thought the oil gusher and massive, criminal dosing of Core-exit in the Gulf of Mexico was the big collective problem? Doesn't Chiron in Pisces have a funny way of putting things in context for us?

We live in a world that wants to separate people into the happy and the unhappy, the joyful and the depressed, the fortunate and the unfortunate, the normal and the abnormal, the positive and the negative.

But those distinctions are not real.

If the scenarios on planet Earth during transiting Chiron in Pisces (2011 - 2019) teach us anything, it's that what affects one will eventually affect all. There is no real line between the fortunates and the unfortunates. We cannot separate ourselves from the corruption, the murder, the erosion, the destruction, the poisoning that is going on - no matter what dimension you mistakenly believe you are ascending to, no matter how much fake currency you have in your bank account.

The fascists didn't really lose the war.

And now they've gotten into our food, into our water, into our air, into our minds, into our psychic environments, into our relationships, and into the social fabric that holds us together.

They have people chasing money and luxury items and tropical vacations and 200 "likes" on their seductive, social media selfies. They have people chasing a highly skewed idea of "success," all so very poisonous and destructive during the Pluto in Capricorn years.

They have people regimented in inhumane 8 to 5 office schedules that do not take into account the natural ebb and flow of energy in a biological organism.

And they have people convinced that if they can't sustain this grueling Monday to Friday march, they are worthless, damaged, less than whole. In short, if you can't keep up with that relentless, robotic, fluorescently-lit pace, there's something very, very wrong with you.

If you have to work two or three jobs just to keep a roof over your head and food on your table, there's something wrong with you.

If you are a man who can't work 14, 16, 18-hour days, there is something wrong with you.

If you are woman who can't cheerfully whip up culinary delights for her family every night of the week after working a full day, there is something wrong with you.

They have people snowed, that's for sure.

They have people blaming themselves for situations that have been planned and orchestrated to be just this bad...and worse.

There is a natural ebb and flow to the energy of a human being. The Moon cycles are a big indicator of this. But we are in the Pluto in Capricorn years: caffeine and drug-fuelled to keep us going and going and going. We are in a series of years when it's considered a sickness if you need to rest, if you need to slow down, if you need to just stop for a little while.

We're convinced by a toxic pharmaceutical-pushing medical establishment that we need to be medicated. We need to be more "up" or more "down" or more something in order to be normal, sane, healthy.

Not once does that medical establishment look at the insanity of the constant merry-go-round. Not once does it look at the intentional disruption of the biological systems on this planet. Not once does it look at our food, our water, our air, our mental, psychic, and physical environments.

And so it misses the point.

With Mars in the sign of the worker making an opposition to Chiron in Pisces, it's your job this week - our job - to get to the point. To root this the fuck out so that it stops preying on us.

It's our job to make the connections between a) how we feel and b) what is going on on this planet that could be leading us to feel that way.

It's our job to tunnel down to the last despicable roots, to the last areas of manipulation, and to pull it out. All the way. No half-assed jobs.

It's our job this week to look at the basic facts, at the basic realities, and to make our decisions from there.

It's our job not to make ourselves pathological just because our biology is responding in a perfectly understandable fashion to stressful and frightening situations.

It's our job to understand depression as a natural and normal reaction to a world that has gone way off course. It's our job to integrate it as much as possible, to keep our emotional states as fluid as possible, to feel it all, right down deep, but not to allow it to drag us under and keep us there.

We're moving into a New Moon in Scorpio conjunct Saturn on November 3 (7:50 a.m. CST). This New Moon is also an eclipse.

This means we are in the Dark of the Moon for a good chunk of this next week, one of those natural energetic low points I was talking about. Again, understand the insanity of a system that ignores this fundamental energy cycle, this Moon cycle, this ebb and flow, this soul root. Don't make the natural reactions of your biology and emotional chemistry into the insane things.

During this Dark of the Moon phase, we experience All Hallow's Eve October 31, a time when we have to be very energetically vigilant. We also experience the fourth of seven squares between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn on November 1.

Again, putting personal feelings and reactions into their broader context is necessary. Things are being planned and orchestrated according to this square series, just as they were in the 1930s when we last experienced a series of squares between these two bodies. There is evil on this planet attempting to direct us into a death march, and the only way we don't succumb to the depression of this is to continually expose it, rip the mask off it, get pissed off about it, talk about it, laugh at it, and look at the ugly, ugly things it is doing so that we can break its hold and its manipulation wherever we can.

Getting to the deep-down emotional and psychological roots is necessary. Understanding the pathology of the structures, the power hierarchies, the relentless corporate pace, and understanding our natural reactions to that pathology, is necessary.

To get out from under the most detrimental weight of all this, we have to put it into context. We have to see it clearly. We have to stop blaming ourselves. We have to put our emotional and psychological reactions into their proper context until they don't seem insane at all. Until they seem downright valiant!

This upcoming week, if you do nothing else, break out of the current medical establishment mindset that makes individuals sick, damaged, and pathological without any correlations made to the sick, damaged, and pathological collective structures and ways of doing things.

Refuse the weight of this bullshit diagnosis. Refuse all the bullshit diagnoses. Don't make your emotional reactions to these upsetting times a bad thing, a wrong thing. Trust your emotional body, and follow its cues and impulses in order to stay the course.

Strength to you all, and keep your spirits up!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Blood Moon Eclipse Pushes Relationship Issues to a Peak

The village theatre lit up on show night.
Photos: Willow
 
On Friday, October 18, we experience the yearly Hunter's Moon, also referred to as the Blood Moon.
 
The Hunter's Moon or Blood Moon follows the Harvest Moon and precedes the Beaver Moon - the three Full Moons of the year that provide the most moonlit hours. During this time of the year - fall in the northern hemisphere, spring in the southern - the Moon rises earlier in the evening and sets later in the early morning, providing lengthier periods of moon magic than at any other time of the year.
 
Traditionally in the northern hemisphere, blood ran at this Moon, hence the name. Hunters were and still are able to track and kill their prey more easily under the light of this Moon, filling their stores with meat for the long, cold winter ahead.
 
There is a brutality to this Moon, as well as a survival necessity. Understand this.
 
This Aries Full Moon, falling at 25 degrees opposite the Libra Sun, is also an eclipse, which makes the scenes it is rising over just that much more dramatic, unpredictable, emotionally on-edge.
 
Remember that crap-cutting Libra New Moon within cardinal Grand Cross we experienced October 4? This Full Moon eclipse in Aries pushes to a peak all the relationship issues and sometimes dark realizations that were stirred at that time.
 
At this Aries Full Moon, we stand alone in our relationship choices, in the decisions we came to around the time of that New Moon.

We hold our standards, even when that means ruffling feathers or saying goodbye altogether to a relationship.
 
At this Aries Full Moon, at this Blood Moon, with relationship planet Venus in truth-telling Sagittarius trine Uranus, we have to stand in the truth of who we really are and what we really want. We stand in this truth even when it does not match the expectations others have of us, even when it does not jibe with the relationship constructs we are working within.
 
This Aries Full Moon is emotionally energized, edgy, raw, even angry. We courageously and defiantly stand as who we are here, come what may. We stand in our own truth, even when it doesn't fit the story others have for us. Especially then. 
 
Mercury is currently stationing retrograde at 18 degrees Scorpio (October 21), about to go back over the information, the messages, the insights, and the intuitive hits we've received since the Libra New Moon, particularly as they involve relationships and relationship dynamics.
 
These are challenging times for relationships of all kinds. The Piscean era constructs continue to promise, to disappoint, to dissolve. The Aquarian era constructs have not yet fully emerged. There is isolation here and emotional erosion through that isolation. There is frustration. There is anger.
 
But there's also us. There are sexy, beautiful emotional warriors here, under this Aries Moon, unwilling to compromise ourselves, our full selves, to fit within standardized relationship constructs. Unwilling to take less than what we desire at a soul level, than what will truly make our hearts sing.
 
We're at the very beginning here. At the beginning of a new era and at the beginning of a whole new ballgame for relationships. It can be stark, terrifying. But also exhilarating. As the Moon conjuncts Uranus in Aries October 17 (2:01 p.m. CST), drawing the new-era energy into this Full Moon, we can feel it. We're the pioneers. We're cutting the trail.
 
And it's bloody hard, at times. It's lonely. It feels foreign, frustrating, confusing, desolate. We wonder if we might have taken a wrong turn, but there's really nowhere to go but onward. There's no one to rely on but ourselves, nothing to guide but our instincts.
 
We're the ones blazing this trail. We're the ones breaking down barriers for the generations who follow. And we're doing it our way.
 
How much more inspiring a time can there possibly be?
 
Know that if you are standing strong and true in your full self, in your full truth, you are exactly where you need to be under this Blood Moon - whether inside a love relationship or out.
 
Honour your rock-and-roll soul under this Aries Full Moon. Honour the fight in you, the never-say-die in you, under this Moon. Honour the survivor that is you, and honour the fresh relationship territory you have fought, tooth-and-nail, to come into.
 
To paraphrase one fine anarchist band, we get knocked down, but we get up again. No one's ever going to keep us down.
 
And that's the plain, honest truth, motherfuckers.
 
Kick up your heels under this Moon and celebrate the fact.

The Aries Full Moon is exact at 6:38 p.m. CST on October 18.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Mars in Virgo Kicks a Little Butt, Takes a Few Names

Action planet Mars entered crisp, clean, clear Virgo in the early morning of October 15, where it will remain until December 7.

This transit officially brings a two-year Mars in Virgo-infused goal and personal direction cycle to a close - but not before we put every last bit of its energy into active practise in our daily lives.

Mars last went retrograde January to April 2012 from 23 to 3 degrees Virgo. The planet related to aggressive action, will, goals, sex drive, and personal direction spent almost eight months in the sign of work, health, and function - from November 2011 to July 2012.

During that time, as Mars opposed Neptune and Chiron, newly in Pisces, we were required to take on a path of hardcore, warrior holism in reaction to the state of eroding health on this planet.

From a post August 29, 2011:

"This is the fight (Mars) to heal (Virgo) and to stay healthy, to maintain health as Fukushima spews, as our environments are poisoned physically, emotionally, psychically, electromagnetically all around us, as we are manipulated by those who profit from us being unintegrated, toxic, unbalanced, disconnected, dysfunctional."

In basic terms, the almost eight-month transit of Mars through Virgo in 2011/2012 indicated a time when we had to set a fierce trajectory to get out from under layers of eroding poison. We had to fight (Mars) to pinpoint and analyze (Virgo) these layers: radioactivity; genetically modified organisms, growth hormones, antibiotics, and other additives in our food; chemical pesticides and herbicides; chemicals and industrial waste in our water; chemtrails and other forms of disorienting and deadly weather modification; toxic pharmaceuticals; injuring vaccines; HAARP activity and other frequency/electromagnetic pollution; psychic and mental disturbance from manipulative mass media; chemical perfumes, cleaners, and dyes; and many more.

And we had to fight to pinpoint and analyze these layers as the powers that be, including the manipulated mainstream media, denied these things even existed. This was the wounding Neptunian smokescreen effect (Chiron/Neptune in Pisces).

If the establishment was forced to admit these things existed, we were assured they had no ill effect on the health of human beings or other living things.

So we've had to outsmart the so-called leaders, the so-called authorities on these issues. We've had to take responsibility for our own paths to health, often outside the mainstream establishments.

(In fact, following the advice of the mainstream establishments has often only made us sicker.)

And now, as Mars makes its way back to the sign of Virgo for the first time since that retrograde, we're required to get very serious and very active, bringing the last little details into play, creating the most optimum function and health we possibly can in order to withstand the stresses of the upcoming winter, followed by the exact cardinal Grand Cross formation April 21 - 24, 2014.

Here is a reminder of some of the Mars in Virgo themes, from a post November 13, 2011:

"The Mars transit and retrograde through Virgo involves an eight-month period of mutable, transitional energy that requires our precise and active participation to direct, re-direct, adjust, and re-adjust our courses. Throughout this time, we'll be directed down only the most pertinent and effective channels in our lives, honing and refining our courses and withdrawing personal energy from anything that is not necessary, valuable, or vital moving forward. This process is happening, specifically, in the house or houses where Virgo falls in your natal chart. That's the area where things need to be tightened.

Virgo is one of the quieter placements for Mars. Mars is active here but only in the ways that count. No excess of motion, exertion, words, mental function, or use of will. Small movements, adjustments, and re-direction have big effect, and temperance rules, as too much effort in one direction results only in energy expended for self-correction.

The energy on the planet will be getting very bizarre and out of control at times over the next years, and things can really go haywire if we allow them to. This is why we need the Virgoan qualities applied through the iron will of Mars to set our courses now, doing battle on the fine points.

If we're oh-so-careful and diligent, smoothing every screwy detail, critiquing every glowing illusion, attending to every nagging issue, we set a tone with this retrograde that can keep us grounded and out of the worst of the hyped baloney and utter bullshit being amped up on this planet.

Clean, crisp, clear. In Virgo, every detail matters. Virgo is a sign that needs things to be just right, and with Mars here, we're going to have to take it personally when they aren't.

If it hits our ears as incorrect, it's rejected, no matter how many people are saying it, doing it, or believing it. Anyone trying to fill our minds, bodies, societies, or environments with useless crap is viewed as an enemy of our health.

Enemies of our health. There are many. Under Mars in Virgo, we're consciously fighting to maintain health in a world increasingly toxic to living things. Our systems are quite literally being attacked on multiple fronts. There's an immediacy with this Mars transit. There's no more time to put off the changes necessary to fortify our health. It's on. In order for our systems to continue processing and metabolizing what's going on, they need to be in tip-top condition.

Diet, exercise regimes, habits, routines, work conditions, the quality of our food and water, our mental and emotional environments - a crucial analysis and refinement is on the docket during this transit, fighting to maintain systemic health while preparing us for the next years on the planet. This involves the removal or at least strong limitation of anything that weighs our systems down: excess alcohol, drug use, cigarettes, perfumes, air fresheners, chemical cleaners, electromagnetic pollution, noise pollution, pesticides and additives in food, refined sugar, artificial colours, genetically modified food, fluoride, excessive internet, TV, music, shopping, socializing.

Mars is a hard-ass in Virgo, and with good reason.

Even things touted as healthful should be gone over with a fine-toothed comb. With Virgo, less is more. Be careful what you add to your life and to your system. In most cases, Virgo is about what needs to be taken away.

There is a sexual element (Mars) to health (Virgo) here. A more precise application of sexual energy is required. A new understanding of the effects of sexual activity on health and on the surrounding energetic environment as a whole comes about here. The "too much, too fast, too soon" sexual ethic constantly shoved down our throats is rejected by those who use this transit well, and the application of sexuality is streamlined with a new awareness and focus on the health of the individual, the partner, the relationship, the immediate social groups and society, and the spirit, in general. There's a re-wiring of attractions and sexual habits here, a clarification, and a removal of toxic sexual connections. Holistic sexual health.

Our work is infused with a necessary level of fight during this transit. We fight to overcome the redundancy, uselessness, and listlessness forced upon so many through mass institutionalized unemployment, underemployment, and lack of meaningful paid employment."

Virgo is the final sign related to the honing and perfection of the self (as much perfection as is possibly in these fallible human forms).

The next Mars retrograde will be in Libra, the sign of Mars' detriment. Relationship-oriented Libra is the first sign to go beyond the self, relating to other people, relationships, partnerships, social responsibilities, justice, and maintaining our equilibrium in relation to others. Mars enters Libra December 7, 2013 where it stays until July 25, 2014. It will retrograde March 1 to May 19, 2014 from 27 to 9 degrees Libra. 

In order to be successful as Mars turns its sights to others in Libra, bringing some stressful relationship dynamics onto our plates, we have to be functioning as well as we possibly can as individuals. We have to be honed, toned, streamlined, and functional, firing on all cylinders. In order to maintain the types of relationships and the types of social relations we desire with Mars transiting Libra, we have to have the kinks worked out in our own selves and lives first.

This is the primary goal of Mars in Virgo, and it has been our goal for the past two years, under the Mars in Virgo-coloured goal cycle.



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Monday, October 7, 2013

USDA: You're on Your Own Against Monsanto, Farmers!

The first case of natural alfalfa contamination by a genetically modified variety was reported by a farmer in Washington state in September 2013. The farmer’s alfalfa crop was rejected for export because, without his knowledge or intention, it was found to contain genetically modified material from Monsanto’s Roundup Ready GM alfalfa variety.

Because many countries worldwide have banned genetically modified seeds, crops, and foods, including the European Union, any crop found to contain GM material will be rejected for export.

The Washington farmer complained to the United States Department of Agriculture, which has just responded with an “it’s not our problem” stance on the issue. The USDA claims the unintentional contamination of the natural alfalfa crop, as well as the resulting loss of markets and non-GM food security, are a “commercial issue” that must be dealt with in the marketplace.

In other words, we approved GM alfalfa unconditionally amidst huge opposition, we approved it against your will, but now that it's contaminating your crops and adversely affecting your livelihoods, you’re on your own against Monsanto, farmers!

The United States Department of Agriculture, under the Biotechnology Industry Association's Governor of the Year, Tom Vilsack, approved the commercial sale and planting of genetically modified alfalfa unconditionally in 2011 amidst huge opposition from farmers and citizens.

It has been planted in the United States for three growing seasons now, and we are just starting to hear the stories of unwanted contamination.

Farmers and citizens who understand plants and agriculture know that the contamination of the natural alfalfa crop is inevitable with the widespread sale and growth of genetically modified varieties. Alfalfa is a feral perennial (grows back year-after-year). In other words, it grows and spreads like a weed. In fact, if a farmer does not want alfalfa in his or her field, it is very difficult to get rid of. Alfalfa is pollinated by wind, bees, and animals. Because of this, it is impossible to contain the spread of GM alfalfa, including with so-called buffer fields between GM and non-GM crops.

Alfalfa is a staple livestock feed. It is used as fertilizer in organic agriculture. It is also often grown during the three-year transition period from conventional to organic farming. In other words, there are many avenues by which alfalfa finds its way into the human diet.

The opposition to GM alfalfa in Canada has so far held off its planting and growth in this country. However, a Wisconsin-based company, Forage Genetics, plans to sell Monsanto's Roundup Ready GM alfalfa in Ontario and Quebec as soon as it can.  

Farmers in Ontario recently made a request of the Ontario provincial government to do an environmental assessment on GM alfalfa before its commercial sale and planting were approved in the province. The Ontario government has just announced its refusal to do that assessment.

This echoes the stance from most provinces in Canada: it's a federal government matter, none of our concern.

The Federal government in Canada, of course, is led by the Harper Conservatives, a group of "free" market, corporate-loving neo-conservatives that is as pro-GMO as you can get. Safeguards will not be forthcoming.

Major Health and Safety Concerns Raised by Studies of GM Diets on Animals in 2012 and 2013


* An unprecedented animal feeding trial found in 2012 that laboratory rats fed genetically modified corn as well as glyphosate residue - the primary ingredient in Monsanto's herbicide Roundup - developed high incidences of tumours, multiple organ damage, and premature death.

The results of the GM feeding trial were published September 19, 2012 in the scientific journal "Food and Chemical Toxicology." The peer-reviewed study was conducted by a team of scientists led by biologist and endocrinologist Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen in France. The study was attacked vociferously as flawed by other scientists and biotechnology groups. Despite the uproar, the "Food and Chemical Toxicology" journal, a major journal on toxiciology, refused to retract the study.

The trial studied the long-term effects of exposure to NK603 GM corn (Monsanto's Roundup Ready variety) and glyphosate - individually and combined - on the health of rats over two years.

The study found that even exposure to levels considered "safe" resulted in severe negative health effects in the animals:

- Of the rats fed GM corn or glyphosate residue, 50% of males and 70% of females died prematurely. This was compared to 30% and 20% respectively in the control group.
- Female rats developed fatal mammary tumours and pituitary disorders. Males developed liver damage, kidney and skin tumours and had problems with their digestive systems.
- Rats fed GM corn or Roundup residues developed two to three times more tumours than the control group.

The study found that ingestion of GM corn and glyphosate caused similar damage in the rats whether consumed separately or together. Even the lowest doses of GM corn and glyphosate, touted as safe by industry, were associated with severe health problems.

Previous studies have produced similar findings, but this was the first ever feeding trial done over the course of the entire lifespan of a laboratory rat - two years.
Despite the fact that lab rats live only two years, no genetically modified animal feeding trials have been done up to this point for longer than 90 days. Genetically modified seeds/foods were rushed onto the market in Canada and the United States without any longer-term studies on potential effects.
The majority of the tumours and devastating health effects that developed with the rats in the Seralini study were detected after 18 months, which means that prior GM testing done over 90 days would not have discovered them.
* In 2013, the results of a five-month feeding study done on just-weaned pigs were released in the "Organic Systems Journal." The study, conducted by lead researcher Judy Carman of Flinders University in Australia, found that a diet of genetically modified corn and soy produced severe stomach inflammation in the pigs, as well as enlargement of the uteruses in female pigs, indicating both digestive and reproductive damage from GM diets.
Carman said that pigs were used in the feeding study because their digestive systems are similar to those of human beings.
Carman is calling for further long-term animal feeding studies on GM foods before they continue to be commercially planted and ingested by humans.
* Also in 2013, the results of a study on glyphosate excretion in the urine of Danish dairy cattle were released. The study, led by Dr. Monica Kruger, looked at 240 dairy cattle from eight different dairy farms in Denmark. It found that glyphosate was being excreted in varying amounts by all the cattle. Blood tests showed toxicity, with a particular effect on liver and muscle cells. The conclusion of this study was that glyphosate is toxic to the metabolism of dairy cattle.

Roundup is currently the world's most popular and widely-used herbicide. Its global usage is set to double by 2017, according to Global Industry Analysts of San Jose, California.
 
So despite these dire feeding trial results, which, at the very least, indicate further animal feeding trials are necessary before GM crops continue to be planted and ingested, governments at all levels in the United States and Canada steamroll on with the pro-GMO agenda.
 
The current focus among members of the public is the labeling of GM products on store shelves.
 
While this is certainly a good step, this type of labeling does not address the unknown and unintentional contamination of foods by GMOs.
 
We can label foods we know are GM. We can label foods we know have been produced with genetically modified ingredients.
 
However, we can't label foods that have been unknowingly or unintentionally contaminated by GMOs.
 
This unknown and unintentional contamination is the real key with GM alfalfa, which is, again, a feral perennial plant that grows and spreads like a weed, pollinated by wind, bees, and animals.
 
Our food supply is being insidiously, invisibly contaminated by GMOs. This is going on without the public's full knowledge or consent.
 
Animal feeding trial results released in 2012 and 2013 indicate strong connections between GM diets and tumours, organ damage, digestive problems, reproductive damage, and premature death.
 
We are being failed on multiple levels by both government and industry. Both these groups tout "the science" in their blind acceptance and promotion of genetically modified crops. But the science they are using is incomplete and terribly outdated.
 
These bodies that claim to keep us safe from harmful products are turning a blind eye to the solid science showing major concerns with a GM diet for both animals and humans.
 
Now is the time for all concerned citizens to raise their voices on this issue:
 

Stop GM alfalfa in Canada and Worldwide!


"Stop GM Alfalfa" bumper stickers from WWA Activism 


All articles on GM alfalfa from Willow's Web Astrology: GM alfalfa

Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Crap-Cutting Libra New Moon Sets a New Tone in Relationships of All Kinds

We're currently in the Dark of the Moon in Virgo, ahead of an uber potent Libra New Moon within cardinal Grand Cross on Friday, October 4 (exact 7:35 p.m. CST) that will reverberate strongly throughout the weekend and into the beginning of next week.

As the Moon goes dark in practical, no-nonsense Virgo today, ahead of this "relationship changer" New Moon, pay attention to people's real, actual track records, what they do on a day-to-day basis, rather than to their charms, their glowing plans, or their stated intentions.

There are some subtle details we need to feel out here in the dark, ahead of the New Moon, and these details shape our orientation as we move through the New Moon portal.

We're at the end of the line as far as hoping and wishing and praying for things to get better. With all four cardinal (action, initiation, leadership, new direction) signs activated at the time of the New Moon, it's time to take action in relationships of all kinds - personal and professional. It's time to make things better. And that very well might involve leaving relationships that are no longer viable, healthy, or offering any true reciprocity.

Venus in Scorpio is the dispositor of this New Moon, the love and relationship planet in the sign of its detriment, and this is the primary influence over the energy and themes.

From a previous post:

"Venus is the planet that rules relationships. Scorpio is a sign that involves patterns ending. Hence, transiting Venus in Scorpio (September 11 - October 7) is a great time to end detrimental patterns in relationships of all kinds.  
 
Venus in Scorpio will suck the poison out of your relationship. It will reformulate things from the guts out. But your relationship has to be strong enough to withstand that process first. If it isn't, it will end, die, come to a point of completion. All Scorpio themes.

This is one of the reasons Venus is so uncomfortable in the sign of the scorpion. Venus is about love, beauty, relationship, mutuality, shared enjoyment. Who ever wants to see a love relationship die? Who ever wants to dig up issues that could bring about your relationship's demise?

With Venus in Scorpio, however, there are some underlying issues, some imbalanced energy exchanges, some true feelings being swept under rugs, and if these are ignored or denied for long enough, they start to undermine the entire foundation of the relationship.

This is what Venus in Scorpio knows, and this is why Venus is so intent on getting to the roots of the matter during its time in the sign of the investigator.

There's more to our relationships than meets the eye when Venus is transiting Scorpio, as it is now, and we have to penetrate these hidden layers, releasing pent-up energy, suppressed emotions, and convoluted relating patterns - or deal with a slow, potentially-painful relationship death.

These are life-saving efforts being applied by Venus in Scorpio in relationship now, but these efforts could also kill our relationships. This is the razor's edge we walk between life and death, sustainability and collapse, when planets are transiting Scorpio."

This is a true "cutting the crap, cut to the chase" New Moon, and it falls in a sign that generally needs help cutting the crap - charming, congenial, smooth-it-over Libra!

A square to Pluto, an opposition to Uranus, and a Scorpio stellium should be just the ticket for getting down to brass tacks, however.

In addition to dispositor Venus, Mercury, Saturn, and the North Node are transiting Scorpio, creating a concentration of energy in the sign of deep, dark, underlying power dynamics.

Wherever you're fed up, over it, or tired of the crap in relationship, that's where this New Moon in Libra opens a door. Use it.

"If you're giving way more than you're receiving in your relationships, it's time to either a) reformulate or b) make a clean relationship sweep, withdrawing your energy, talents, and skills from unsatisfying relationships that lack true reciprocity."

The square between the Libra Sun and Moon to Pluto in Capricorn forces our hand. To continue in these same dynamics would be death. It would be insanity.

The opposition to shaking-things-up Uranus in the sign of self, Aries, provides a shot in the arm for relationship-oriented Libra, a sign often afraid to be on its own. A sign often pathologically afraid to be on its own.

With so much Scorpio influence, we're digging down to the emotional attachments and psychological patterns the keep us stuck, stifled, and unfulfilled in relationship. This is potentially fearful territory. We're required to address some very hot button issues here, issues that, yes, could bring certain relationships to an end, rather than just the relationship dynamics.

But the Uranian writing is on the wall: it's a thousand times better to be on your own, standing alone, independent now than to remain in an untenable, crap sandwich relationship.

The Piscean-era relationship ideal of constant and perfect union-communion is giving way to something more realistic, something more aligned with the times.

Recall that aggressive malefic planet Mars will soon transit Libra for almost eight months (December 2013 to July 2014). Libra is a sign that Mars does not like to be in all that much, and this transit will be bringing the angst to our relationships if we've chosen to look the other way and keep things lovey dovey, sweet-as-pie.

Anything glossed over and any anger left unaddressed at the time of this New Moon will be coming up again during that Mars in Libra transit, which activates cardinal Grand Crosses over the course of the transit and retrograde, including the exact one at 13 degrees of the cardinal signs in April 2014.

With Mars in Libra for eight months within Grand Cross, we're going to have to fight for the types of relationships we want - personally and professionally. We're going to have to fight for more fairness, kindness, reciprocity, and balance in our relationships. And this battle is much easier if we're proactive every step of the way, including at this potent, potent Libra New Moon.

The Moon enters lovely Libra tonight at 10:00 p.m. CST.

The New Moon falls at 11 degrees Libra at 7:35 p.m. tomorrow, October 4.

The Moon enters Scorpio at 3:33 a.m. on October 6 and conjuncts Mercury, the North Node, and Saturn that day.

Venus enters more buoyant and optimistic Sagittarius around noon on Monday, October 7, providing a little breather from the intensity of the transit through Scorpio.

The Moon will enter Sagittarius at 7:21 a.m. on October 8 and conjuncts Venus in Sagittarius at 8:56 a.m., giving us a moment to digest the ultimate relational truths coming out of the Libra New Moon.