Please scroll down to go straight to this week’s astrology. Firstly some info for online studying –
Update Online Courses
I started running online courses about 18 months ago, as a way of filling students’ needs for the winter months. Now that the Summer School has been cancelled for May and June (rescheduled provisionally for September, info after the blog) these courses will be running all year. Click on either ASTROLOGY or TAROT on the website homepage for links to all courses and study options.
What Students Say
I asked some of my students to send me a few sentences about their experience of online studying and here is what they have to say. I should add that if I were to write testimonials in return they would be just as glowing. I just love teaching and enthusing, and my wonderful students are the highlights of every week, and even more so now in these lockdown days. By your students you’ll be taught is also so true, every time I take on a new student and do these phone tutorials I learn something new. We never stop learning J
I completed the online Tarot course and it was so great that I decided to carry on, and am now just finishing an astrology course. Joanna has been such a wonder teacher. Her knowledge and experience of these subjects are phenomenal. I’ve gained more insights and learned more in these few months with Joanna than I have in the 10+ years I’ve been studying. She has changed my life and given me the confidence I needed to move forward with my own goals in astrology and tarot. She is an angel, she is a friend.
- Marquita – Talking Tarot and The Astrology of Relationships
This has been such a positive experience for me. I’ve done several online astrology courses before, but have never found such an inspiring, approachable and knowledgeable teacher as Jo. The phone tutorials were invaluable, not just for the one to one contact with Jo and the ironing out of anything I may have struggled with, but also because Jo’s enthusiasm is infectious. Jo is such a fantastic teacher, she continually ‘tailored’ the course to suit my knowledge and skills, and I have gained so much knowledge and confidence.
- Sue – Perfect Timing in Predictive Astrology
The Tarot course was just brilliant – well structured, thorough and Jo has a way of explaining things that makes complete sense and doesn’t make you feel stupid for not knowing. The whole experience felt so personal and rich – I was amazed at how much knowledge and confidence I gained with the Tarot in just a few short weeks.
Jo is also a brilliant supervisor. I have been doing astrology for a number of years, but only recently started working with clients and it was so good to have Jo as a backstop, guiding me through the process and helping me sort out the astrological wheat from the chaff and focus on what’s important. As well as being a great astrologer, she is also a gifted communicator and teacher – she really makes those symbols sing.
- Jill – Talking Tarot and Astrological Client Supervision
Being able to study at my own pace was a big plus for me, it really gave me time to absorb what I was learning. Jo’s lessons were clearly structured and full of information and insight. I really enjoyed the one to one tutorials and the course overall has deepened and enriched my own tarot practice.
- Rebecca – Talking Tarot
I cannot recommend Joanna’s online tarot course enough. Before starting, the volume of the task seemed daunting so I procrastinated for ages only to find, once launched, that Joanna had set the level of each module so well that I loved doing them. I could feel my knowledge and interest growing week by week. This does wonders for your confidence and the whole process was fascinating and fun. Joanna also pitched the phone tutorials just right and there was a lot of laughter, which is how I learn – and retain learning – best.
- Greta – Talking Tarot
NEW PRICE STRUCTURE
Apparently I wasn’t crystal clear about this last week. In short, forget the previous pricing of online courses that used a sliding scale of costs depending on how many modules you chose to do. For the rest of this “lockdown year” all courses are the lowest price, as quoted for 10 modules, but you simply pay for two modules at a time as you go along. This means that you pay £85.00 to get started on any course, and that you don’t have to commit to a whole course and you can stop or continue at any time.
The Astrology Blog 13 April 2020
Mobile Friendly New Format – Protection, Long Distance Love & Assuaging Anxiety
All times in BST
“What does it matter how many lovers you have if none of them gives you the universe?”
“The knowledge that there is a part of the psychic functions that are out of conscious reach – we did not need to wait for Freud to know this!”
Jacques Lacan – French psychoanalyst and psychiatrist, whose ideas had a significant impact on clinical psychoanalysis, born on this day, 13 April 1901
The biggest event without question so far this year was the monumental Jupiter Pluto conjunction that was exact just over a week ago on 5 April. Regular followers of astrology and of this blog will know that this is recognized as the main “astrological signature” of the pandemic.
You can read my full feature about this on Soul & Spirit magazine’s website –
This aspect will form again twice, finalizing mid November, but for now it’s separating, meaning that Jupiter has now overtaken Pluto but they are still only one degree apart.
Last week Mercury on the end of his journey through Pisces played into that major conjunction and this week it’s the Sun’s turn, squaring up to both planets within a 24 hour period. These aspects are preceded by the conjunction of Mercury (now on his way through Aries) with Chiron, the Wounded Healer who is so often a feature in matters related to both sickness and recovery –
Tuesday 14 April
- Mercury conjunct Chiron 6 Aries 06.02
- Sun 25 Aries square Pluto 25 Capricorn 12.05
Wednesday 15 April
- Sun 26 Aries square Jupiter 26 Capricorn 12.00
So this is a tough start to the week, but Mercury – Chiron combinations are at least full of possibilities. Whilst the obvious interpretation of sad news in relation to the wounding going on all over the world is going to be part of the picture, there is also a chance to understand your own wounding more deeply, or that of someone close to you. It’s a poignant time for healing a rift, or hearing from someone who has been out of touch for their own reasons.
If you find yourself in conflict with someone then it might help to remember that we are all wounded – we all have Chiron in our own horoscopes. Try not to react from a position of hurt or pain, but from a desire to understand. For example, when we wear the therapist’s hat we can find it easier to stay curious (Mercury) and ask, what is this telling me?
Last Wednesday we had Mars in Aquarius (the sign that rules all humanitarian concerns) sextile Chiron, which I forgot to mention. There is, inevitably, a collective reaction to the tragedy unfolding throughout the world. Many people are struggling financially or having to reinvent themselves as someone who works from home, and nearly everyone is emotionally stressed and finding it hard to relax or sleep.
Less physical activity and more anxiety is not the healthiest of combinations, especially when dealing with uncertainty on a global scale. At a simple physical level bodies need exercise and the time when we could all do with more of it is the time when it’s least available. Jokes are appearing on Facebook about weight gain, such as notices on the fridge saying, “Do not open this door – you are not hungry, you are bored!””
A couple of months ago I wrote, somewhat naively with hindsight, that the fear was spreading faster than the virus itself, but I think that this point is something still worth recognizing. The Pope, speaking at his Easter vigil service on Saturday evening in a pretty much empty St Peter’s Basilica, urged people not to “yield to fear” but to be “messengers of life in a time of death”.
If your own anxiety is spiraling, and I promised several “afraid to leave the house” people I would address this issue this week, then I do have a couple of suggestions which fit with the current astrology. Firstly Mercury has now left Pisces (linked to suffering, overwhelm, addiction, saturation) and is now in Aries, sign of the self. Stop watching the news. Not forever, but for as long as you can manage. I can pick up the BBC here in Greece and the times when I’ve been watching the news are of course the times when I’m then most unsettled and afraid for the world, and pray even harder that the virus won’t reach us on the island of Lefkada.
The essential point is that all of this is totally out of my control anyway, and the point of not watching the news is that you don’t have to be informed up to your eyes the whole time. It doesn’t mean that we don’t care. We all know what’s going on, we all know what to do. But as with every tragedy there’s the factor of morbid fascination at work. The more we can detach from that, the more effective we become as individuals (Aries). The better we feel within ourselves, the more we can give and attend to the needs of the other important individuals in our lives, our children, partner, family, friends and community. So self care is not selfish in the derogatory sense, it’s the healthiest thing we can do.
As the Sun illuminates the Jupiter – Pluto up until the middle of the week it’s especially important to renounce (Pluto) your usual freedom (Jupiter), but in the spirit of protection rather than hardship. Jupiter is known as the planet of luck, opportunity and abundance but his title The Greater Benefic also extends to his role of Protector. Note that this planet’s sign of “exaltation” is Cancer, the sign of family and nurture. Stick to the guidelines of social distancing because not only does this reduce your own risk of illness, it also then reduces anxiety. But don’t let this tip into agoraphobia. Going for a brisk walk in the quietest place available to you and getting fresh air is not going to kill you.
MERCURY AND THE LOVE PLANETS
The second half of the week is less stressful and may even bring several breaths of fresh air. Whatever new (Aries) coping strategies you’ve put in place should show signs of working, as Mercury separates from suffering Chiron and aligns harmoniously with Venus and Mars –
Saturday 18 April
- Mercury 12 Aries sextile Venus 12 Gemini 06.37
Sunday 19 April
- Mercury 13 Aries sextile Mars 13 Aquarius 04.56
- Sun ingress Taurus 15.47
Any Mercury – Venus combination is fantastic for good news, solution finding, money ideas, love talk or pleasures to be found through friendships, especially women. Mercury is all about communication and connection, and Venus and Mars are now both in Air signs (element of the mind). The time honoured way to assuage anxiety is to talk about things, simply because this often restores perspective and uncovers ideas and answers that we wouldn’t have thought about left to our own devices.
It’s also an ideal time to put in limits around talking about the pandemic, to get off the “can’t talk about anything else” treadmill and to channel your creative talents into whatever you enjoy doing or into whatever improves the quality of life as we currently know it.
Mercury – Mars combinations are also super creative but more action orientated. They tend to bring men (Mars) into the picture. In all relationship issues this is a time to be extra aware of the difference between the sexes, or to accept that a partner’s needs or way of coping with things might be very different from your own. Mercury – Mars in any signs can flag up the risk of things getting combative or argumentative but, as with the Mercury – Chiron conjunction, it’s helpful to be more analytical (air) rather than simply reactive. Different viewpoints don’t have to be a source of conflict but a source of debate.
VENUS SLOWING DOWN
When I was listing the aspects for this week I thought at first that I must have missed the alignment of Venus and Mars themselves. As you can see from the above aspects fast moving Mercury links up with each up of them in a period of less than 24 hours, as Venus is at 12 degrees of Gemini and then Mars is at 13 degrees of Aquarius, only a degree apart in their respective air signs. As Venus moves more quickly than Mars then she would normally be on the point of making a trine to Mars, a harmonious aspect created when two planets are exactly four signs apart.
However, the interesting thing is that this aspect doesn’t happen. This is because Venus is already starting to slow down in readiness for turning retrograde in a month’s time. In other words Venus is starting to fall behind as Mars steams onwards. In symbolic terms this is a bit discouraging rather than interesting as it suggests a picture of desires or events being on the point of happening but then being delayed again. Venus in Gemini (sign of the Twins, duality, anything in twos) flags up the danger of second waves that could keep lockdown measures in place rather than being lifted. This is also reflected in the fact that Gemini is Mercury’s sign and between them they rule the respiratory system in the physical body, ie the reasons for social distancing.
The frustration of not being able to get back to normal life, to suffer more deprivation in terms of social activities and physical contact with loved ones, is not an easy picture to contemplate. New romances or those who find themselves separated could be put to the test yet again, with no other option than to connect online and over the airwaves. If you need reassurance then ask for it, or give it generously if someone else asks it of you. However, we’ve all got to remember that second waves are the worst possible thing that could happen to the world and lifting restrictions too early would have the worst possible consequences. Absolutely nobody wants to go back to square one.
My own feeling as the situation continues to unfold and as I look at the ongoing astrological picture is that we’ll be in a much safer place when Venus turns direct again towards the end of June. That may sound like a long way off but the reality of another couple of months looks pretty much inevitable, and in the bigger scheme of things is a small price to pay if it means that we can start picking up our lives again in the second half of the year.
Finally the last event of this week is the Sun changing sign, moving into Taurus, sign of Fixed Earth. In terms of the bigger picture this also suggests that there won’t be a lot of movement in the next month. The positive side to this sign though is to develop a routine that works for you. Taureans are brilliant at creating familiarity as they’re so often creatures of habit, so take a leaf out of their book, and connect with nature whenever and wherever you can. But watch the comfort eating!
And remember this isn’t forever – it just feels like it …
with love from Greece