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June 2014

30 June 2014 – Mercury brings news, Pluto’s tough message, Venus fun and games at the weekend

The Astrology Blog – w/b 30 June 2014

All times stated are in BST.

The big event of the week is Mercury turning direct in his own sign of Gemini tomorrow, Tuesday at 13.51. Mercury switches to forwards motion after being retrograde since 7 June so at a general level this marks the end of a period of confusion, slowness, deception, uncertainty or things just generally going wrong! Here are the kinds of themes to look out for throughout the week:

Important information comes to light
Disputes or areas of miscommunication are cleared up
You find the right person to deal with the problem
People get back to you or make decisions
Computer glitches/communication technology are solved/sorted
Rumours are squashed when the truth outs
Lost objects are found
This “station” (the moment when Mercury appears to stop to change direction) will be especially significant for you if you have planets or angles at or close to 24 degrees of the mutable signs – Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces. If you don’t know you can calculate your own horoscope on line these days in a matter of seconds. Here’s a link, just enter your date, place and time of birth:
If you don’t know your time of birth enter midday in order to get what is called a “Noon Chart”. With the exception of the fast moving Moon and the sensitive angles of the chart – the main axis of the chart that includes the Ascendant – you will get the sign and degree of the other planets on the day you were born.
So, as above, so below. Mercury getting back on track signals that life will do the same. Even if there isn’t one specific person or piece of information making a difference we can now expect events to conspire to move us forwards. Many will be facing crossroads, making decisions and establishing new arrangements, some of which will take a couple of weeks to settle. Note that Mercury turning around in the sign of the Twins signals duality – so the theme of choices is likely to be even more pronounced.
Generally, July has plenty of highlights to look forward to but the first ten days of the month are still challenging, as Mercury gradually picks up speed again and this Friday brings the annual Sun – Pluto opposition, exact at 09.01. This is always a toughie as, in a nutshell, the Sun is the life force and Pluto is endings, symbolic death/rebirth. If you have planets at or close to 12 degrees of the cardinal signs – Aries, Cancer, Libra or Capricorn – this opposition will be especially significant for you. Whatever comes to an end at this time is clearing the space for something new, even if it doesn’t feel like it. Or expect to deal once and for all with any situation that you’ve been avoiding/hoping would sort itself out – or be on hand to help someone else go through the same thing.
Over the weekend we have Venus moving into the picture. She is currently travelling through Gemini and will make a sextile (harmonious aspect) to Uranus, exact at 07.50 next Monday morning. When aspects are “applying” (yet to become exact) the relevant events often unfold during the previous 48 hours so this aspect is the hallmark of the weekend.
What can we expect? Venus is love, pleasure and fun. Uranus is the unexpected or the unusual but, even by good aspect, he can still be a bit of a loose cannon so listen out for some surprises. But generally a positive Venus/Uranus alliance is great for your social life, gatherings and group events of all kinds.
That’s it for this week, unless you’re a tennis fan like me! The Venus/Uranus aspect is in action for the finals weekend at Wimbledon. Last week I was still dithering about my choice and to be honest I haven’t had the time to explore all the astrology for the championship and then all the individual horoscopes for the favourites. To quote what I said last week:
“The Wimbledon chart is ruled by Mercury – who rules Virgo – and to have the ruling planet of an event horoscope in retrograde motion generally signifies that things won’t go as planned. The favourites are unlikely to win or there will be some other major surprises in store. There are other features in the horoscope that make the overall picture very uncertain so not sure who I am putting my money on just yet… but my friend and colleague Sally Kirkman is great at sports stuff and she has a Wimbledon feature on her website”, and here’s the link for that again:
Well, the major shock was No 1 seed Serena Williams going out in the third round, and then Richard Gasquet losing 9 match points to be defeated by 19 year old Nick Kyrgios. There was also a cliffhanger match between Tsonga and Querry, with the match being suspended at 9 games all in the fifth set, and there was an injury scare for Djokovic. All of this is interesting to me as you may remember that I – wrongly – put my money on Tsonga last year and then he went out injured! But he was playing brilliantly and there is something about his play and personality that I love. After resuming the marathon match and finally clinching the fifth set 14-12 he now plays Djokovic today.
I have looked at Tsonga’s chart and he has a lovely progression (how the planets have moved on and how they are relating to each other now) that is exact for this week, which is an aspect between Venus and Jupiter. These are both the benefics, and Jupiter – luck – is posited in his first house of the physical body. It’s the year of his Saturn Return – a major cycle that often spells success for Saturn types and, with an Aquarius Ascendant, Saturn is his chart ruler – so if he is ever going to do well at Wimbledon surely it must be this year. I don’t know anything about his private life but these progressions and transits indicate happiness so maybe is getting married/becoming a dad – I will have to trawl the news.
Common sense tells me that he is unlikely to beat Djokovic, one of his biggest rivals. They have met 18 times with Djokovic leading 13–5. But I still think the astrology sings a different tune. In Djokovic’s chart we find Mercury turning direct opposite his natal Uranus, and transiting Uranus is exactly square (stressful aspect) his Ascendant, the angle of the physical body. With Mercury/Gemini ruling shoulders/arms/hands I can’t help but wonder if that injury scare might resurface, giving Tsonga the advantage. Sally says the same in her article, that Djokovic’s biggest opponent is more possible injury than the match itself! At the end of the day I just want Tsonga to win and I’ll be watching later ….


23 June 2014 – Love choices, the unexpected and a very sensitive New Moon

The Astrology Blog – w/b 23 June 2014

All times stated are in BST.

Well, one more week of retrograde Mercury to go. The stories continue to flood in, and with Mercury now reversing through his own sign of Gemini my two winners are the mobile phone dropped off a boat to sink to the bottom of the sea with nine years worth of telephone numbers on the sim card, and a friend who switched his phone to a new server only to find that this automatically erased his entire address book…. Oops.

Mercury turns direct next Tuesday 1 July but in the few days beforehand he’ll be “stationing”, slowing right down in readiness for switching direction again. When he turns retrograde that run up period can be troublesome, but conversely the run up period to turning direct again can be helpful. Hurray. So look out for signs towards the end of this week that things are “turning” and getting you back on track. Here’s a checklist for some signs of Mercury getting back to business:

Important information comes to light
People get back to you
Decisions can be made, yours or someone else’s
Rumours are squashed when the truth outs
You find the right person to deal with the problem
Computer glitches are solved/disputes are settled
Lost objects are found

So if any of these points strike a chord with you there’s not long to wait. In the meantime Wimbledon starts today with an official start time of 11.30am so the chart for the beginning of the tournament has a Virgo Ascendant. This means that the chart is ruled by Mercury – who rules Virgo – and to have the ruling planet of an event horoscope in retrograde motion generally signifies that things won’t go as planned. The favourites are unlikely to win or there will be some other major surprises in store. There are other features in the horoscope that make the overall picture very uncertain so not sure who I am putting my money on just yet… but my friend and colleague Sally Kirkman is great at sports stuff and she has a Wimbledon feature on her website:
What else? There’s a busy week ahead. Venus changes sign today, moving into Gemini at 13.25. Traditional astrology doesn’t recognize this combination as a particular strength but I like it. Venus is love and pleasure, Gemini is youthful, fun, light and flirtatious. This is a positive new cycle for love, whether it’s meeting someone or getting to know someone. If you’ve been bogged down with money and practical issues with your other half (Venus in Taurus since the beginning of the month) now you can change the record. Make a point of talking about other things, put a limit on how much time you spend “managing”, in the home/kitchen etc, and bring back variety and spontaneity.
The flip side to Venus in Gemini, sign of the Twins, is infidelity. Venus is women and lovers so for some this marks the transition of leaving one relationship for another, or it can signal meeting someone who is still involved. Look out for “it’s complicated” love scenarios, especially as Venus’ next aspect is a square to Neptune at the weekend, just as Mercury is stationing. This can spell either deception or discovering where you’ve picked up the wrong message, or vice versa, where someone has misinterpreted you. If you are in any love situation that is currently confusing, especially if there’s a triangle involved, the astrological picture would suggest that events unfolding this week will have a significant say in how things are going to pan out.
The other love planet is Mars and he too is in conflict, with an opposition (challenging aspect) to Uranus, exact on Wednesday at 09.26. Uranus is the classic spoke in the wheel, the unexpected or the agent of very sudden change and separations. This aspect is part of the Wimbledon picture for surprises – especially in the men’s games, Mars being men and ruling one to one sports. Out in the world remember that Mars is god of war and this clash with Uranus is a tinderbox for any political or military unrest. At a more personal level look out for upheaval or upsets that could create some chaos, especially if you have planets at 16 degrees of the cardinal signs of Aries, Libra, Cancer and Capricorn. Uranus rules technology so finally, and especially as Mercury is still retrograde and in mischief making mode, back up important work!
Friday brings the New Moon in Cancer. This is a powerful New Moon as she is “dignified”, in her own sign, and at a universal level this is good news for any matters related to family, home and property matters. The New Moon is when the Sun is exactly conjunct the Moon in the same sign, and the Sun’s next aspect will be a trine (harmonious) to Neptune, also dignified in his own sign of Pisces, on Sunday at 08.24.

Astrology loves puns – the water signs are dominating so if you’ve had water related/plumbing problems of any kind you are heading towards resolution. Symbolically the element of water rules the emotions so, similarly, if you have anything sensitive to deal with the end of the week will bring “the right time” although there may be “good and bad” to deal with. As mentioned earlier Venus is also aspecting Neptune on Sunday evening by square – friction – and this can also show in overdoing things. Venus square Neptune says get some beauty sleep, cut back on alcohol, restore your perspective and do nothing when you are tired, upset or in a hurry. Overall it’s a mixed bag of a week so keep your wits about you.



16 June 2014 – Love luck, rethinks, News from the heart of the Sun and the Summer Solstice

The Astrology Blog – w/b 16 June 2014

All times stated are in BST.

I think it’s safe to say that regular readers or regular followers of astrology will know that Mercury is currently retrograde. Planets don’t literally go backwards of course but the astronomy of this phenomenon is all to do with the apparent direction of a planet as seen through the line of vision from Earth. As noted last week the textbook definition of this event – that happens roughly three times a year for three weeks at a time – is “problems with transport and communication”. My inbox abounds with stories, such as having broadband installed at home only to find that it doesn’t work and that the cost for “fixing” it falls to the client… being charged for calls never made… a medical diagnosis connected to the mouth that turns out to be a rare condition for which there is no real treatment… cars being off the road, and so on. Here we’ve been waiting all week for a delivery from a truck coming from the UK only to learn last night that it broke down in Belgium.

All of these stories illustrate that retrograde Mercury issues are often those that are not of our own making. The usual caution applies until he turns direct again, such as buying yourself time for major decisions or being vigilant about your security and possessions, but there’s a limit to how much we can actually predict or anticipate his havoc loving antics. Nearly always there is a waiting game involved or a sense of “back to the drawing board”. This theme is especially strong this week as Mercury turned retrograde on 7 June in the early degrees of Cancer, but tomorrow reverses back into Gemini (11.06). This is a plus point because this is one of Mercury’s own signs and it feels promising for coming up with answers or reworked agreements. Be willing to thrash out details. Gemini is the sign of the Twins so “double” checking, plan B or looking at other options, or entering into partnership personally or in business are all part of the picture.

Also roughly halfway through every retrograde period Mercury meets up with the Sun. So this week we have Sun conjunct Mercury on Thursday (23.51). From a craft point of view we are now in the realm of combust and cazimi planets. What does that mean?
If another planet is conjunct the Sun to within seven and a half degrees then that other planet is said to be combust. This means that it is weakened by its closeness to the Sun, whose powerful rays can burn and overwhelm. However, if a planet conjuncts the Sun to within 17 minutes (ie, just over quarter of a degree) it is then said to be cazimi. In this position the other planet is said to be in the heart of the Sun and is extremely powerful, drawing upon the solar strength and energy rather than being destroyed by it.
In real terms, then, pay close attention to information or events unfolding midweek as there is a good chance that you will find yourself at “the heart of the matter” and will then know how to proceed. Matters that need further work or time will probably not reach true resolution until Mercury starts turning around again at the end of the month but you should get the sense of being on the right track.
There is also a feel good factor this week in the shape of Venus sextile (harmonious aspect) Jupiter on Wednesday at 10.17. These two planets are known as the Benefics – they are good for us – and they rule the sweet and positive things of life. In a nutshell Venus is love/pleasure and Jupiter is opportunity/good fortune. They are especially strong at the moment as Venus is in her own sign of Taurus and Jupiter is in Cancer, his sign of exaltation. In the run up to this aspect becoming exact say yes to invites, make holiday plans, be generous, enjoy your girlfriends and family, and generally make the most of any opportunity to enjoy the sweet things of life. Single? Anyone you meet this week could be a gift.
Finally we mark the Summer Solstice this coming weekend as the Sun enters Cancer on Saturday at 11.52. The Solstice, also called ‘Litha’, is the moment when the Sun appears to stand still as we mark the transition from the days getting longer, back to the days getting shorter. In astrology the Sun symbolizes the life force, consciousness and vitality, so what better time than the longest day of the year to value and honour your health, happiness and the gift of life itself.


9 June 2014 – This week’s Astrology

The Astrology Blog – w/b 9 June 2014

All times stated are in BST.

As you may already have read on the postings on the Facebook group The World of Astrology we had some fun astrology over the weekend doing the annual prediction for Britain’s Got Talent. These things usually turn out to be educational too. In brief, everything has a horoscope – whether it’s an individual, a country, an event or even a question (the latter being horary astrology).

Friend and colleague Sally Kirkman correctly predicted the winner of the French Open – here’s the link for her feature posted last month:
Well done Sal, you are so good at sports stuff! Back to the chart for the BGT final, we had a Scorpio Ascendant (or rising sign) directing us to the two planets ruled by this sign, traditional ruler Mars and co-ruler Pluto. Both of these planets were active. On the night we had the Moon applying to a conjunction of the Mars in Libra – and also Venus applying to trine Pluto. As I posted last week, Mars suggested a male win, but Venus was showing so strongly too, so it was contradictory. I put my money on Lucy Kay, Venus (women) being dignified in her own sign of Taurus, going by good aspect to Pluto. She looked the Plutonic part too – dark, sultry, intense and powerful. Yesterday’s FB Post:

“BGT bet feedback, no winnings for me this year, I put my bet on for Lucy Kay to win, not for a place! But actually the astrology worked out perfectly if you stay traditional – a Scorpio Asc on the chart for the final directs us to Mars, and in the chart the Moon’s next aspect is a conjunction with the Mars. I was put off by the fact that Mars is in detriment in Libra, but of course it’s a perfect showing for men (Mars) singing in harmonies (Libra). The other dominant aspect was Venus trine Pluto – co-ruler of the chart and therefore strictly speaking always secondary to Mars – which picked out the dark haired very Scorpio looking Lucy Kay for second place. A very good showing of tight astrological craft – I’ll stick to the rules more closely next time!”

Ok, back to the serious stuff. The feminine planets Venus or the Moon in aspect to Pluto spell woman power. The Venus – Pluto trine was exact today at 02.39 and the “most watched” video on the BBC news this morning features Christine Lagarde, entitled “What next for most powerful woman?” Natally, she has the Moon tightly conjunct Pluto in “centre stage” Leo.

The other event as the week kicks off is Neptune turning retrograde, at 7 degrees of Pisces. As Neptune is so slow moving this doesn’t have the same kick as Mercury. Neptune will be retrograde until mid November, turning direct again at just under 5 degrees of Pisces. So in the space of five months he will have crawled through only 2 degrees of Pisces. This current turning point then will be most significant for those who have planets between 5-7 degrees of Pisces – or in the other mutable signs of Gemini, Virgo or Sagittarius – which in turn means the aspects of conjunction, opposition or square being formed. Not easy. Neptune loves sea mists and can be very disorientating, especially with a scenario that takes months to play out.

Back to more immediate concerns the rest of the astrology is all packed into the end of the week/going into the weekend. We have:

Friday 13 (unlucky for some) Venus opposite Saturn at 05.10
Friday 13 Full Moon at 22 degrees of Sagittarius at 05.13
Saturday 14 Mars square Pluto at 13.35

Again, this is far from easy. Note that the Full Moon is exact literally within three minutes of the Venus (love, money, women, life’s pleasures) opposite Saturn (delays, denial, obstacles and general stuckness!). Full Moons bring key issues full circle and into the light. Remember also the traditional “lunacy” of Full Moons and the increased risk of domestics. Add to this the fact that Mars is still in Venus’ sign of Libra and squares up to Pluto – signaling endings or power/control issues – and the picture becomes even more complex and difficult.

So, tread carefully. Avoid risk taking. Don’t try to push any situation that is already complicated or fraught with problems beyond your personal control. This would add up to the proverbial banging your head against a brick wall. Recognize where your own power lies, even this is only in an act of acceptance for how something is for now. Be realistic about time – Saturn is Lord of Time – and avoid committing to anything that you suspect would put you under too much pressure.

All of this is underlined by the fact that we have the current backdrop of a retrograde Mercury. Textbook definition of this event – that happens roughly three times a year for three weeks at a time – is “problems with transport and communication”. The metro strike in Sao Paulo threatens to disrupt the start to the World Cup this week…

Closer to home – Mercury turned retrograde on Saturday in Cancer, sign of family and home. All our dogs exploded into a barking frenzy at about 10pm last night when a poor delivery guy tried to deliver souvlaki (kebabs) to us, the wrong address! It made me think of how a retrograde Mercury makes it much harder to “navigate” and find your way around. Symbolically it’s a time for checking our own maps – are we on the right road, did we miss a turning, might it pay to turn around and go back again? The heart of any home is the kitchen, and therefore associated with the Moon and her sign of Cancer. I am still musing on the possible meaning of the dead baby scorpion attached to a chopping board in our kitchen last night too… sincerely hoping it was a solo and not an escapee from a family nest!

The universal symbolism of a retrograde Mercury applies throughout the rest of the month. Note that Mercury will reverse back into his own sign of Gemini next week and will then turn direct in this sign on 1 July. If you missed last week’s mailing here’s the usual survival checklist:

Assume nothing, double check everything
When in doubt, do nothing
Keep a close watch on all belongings – especially phones, keys, cameras and any techno goods
Ensure phone is fully charged when you’re travelling
Don’t travel unless you have to
Take extra care with form filling/signing on dotted lines
Buy yourself time re major decisions
Back up all your computer work
Operate by “re” words – review, rethink, rework, revisit, regroup etc
Have a careful week!


Britain’s Got Talent – who will win?

It’s that time of year – I’m not a gambler but I always have a bet on Britains Got Talent on the basis of the astrology. Two years ago I got it right with Ashley and Pudsey, based partly on the chart ruler being Mars in Virgo – the skill and precision training, and animals belonging to the 6th house, ie Virgo’s natural house. Last year I got it wrong – the main player was Jupiter in Gemini and I went for the Welsh duo, Adam and Richard, but of course the foreign (Jupiter) group of Attraction won. This year we’ve got a chart for the final with Scorpio rising, and Venus applying to a trine of Pluto which i love for the opera singer Lucy Kay. I’ve put my money on her, even though it has to be said that the Moon in Libra applying to a conjunction of Mars – traditional ruler, whereas Pluto is co-ruler – does rather suggest a male win. Mmm, contradictory. but all a bit of fun, let’s see!

Also interested to see how Mercury turning retrograde on the day of the final will play out – who will drop out, forget their words, or will there be a voting mess up? Anything could happen with the mischief maker at work!

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