The Astrology Blog 10 August 2020
All times in BST
“Worrying is using your imagination to create something you don’t want.”
“A belief is only a thought that you continue to think.”
Esther Hicks, aka Abraham Hicks, American inspirational speaker and author
Summer School in Greece
THE WEEK AHEAD
Let me start by saying that the end of this week looks a lot better than the beginning. Or the middle. There are so many twists and turns going on that, when I sat down to write this blog yesterday morning, it was hard to know where to start and how to organize it. Slight feelings of overwhelm. That hardly ever happens to me. Every week I receive emails from appreciative readers, which is lovely, thanking me for my hard work. But while it’s true that the blog generally takes me all of Sunday to put together, and sometimes a big part of Monday morning too, it never feels like a slog. Once I’ve laid out the actual astrology it usually flows, even when it’s heavy stuff. I love writing this blog and look forward to it, which hopefully shows.
It’s also true to say however that the more complex a week ahead looks, the harder it is to write about it concisively. And the more difficult aspects it includes, the harder it is to see the way forwards. And that’s what this week is like, hard to see the way ahead, which is not a great start for an astrologer! Not that the blog is ever about one definite way of doing things or one universal outcome. Interpretation is no more than a “take”, an attempt to capture the current themes.
Symbolism can work out in all sorts of ways because it is by definition mysterious. Think about your dreams. Sometimes your dreamworld brings you clear messages in actual words, but more often than not it’s a foreign language of images that have to be deciphered, decoded and unpacked before they make sense to you. But when you do arrive at the correct interpretation of your dreams the meaning smacks you between the eyes. It’s unmistakable, it’s correct – for you. The message has got through. Someone else could dream about the same images and the message would be different, but equally meaningful, and correct – for them.
If you’re a regular reader you’ll know that my “take” on the week ahead is based on the aspects being made between the planets. An “aspect” simply means the relationship between two planets, how they are coming together, how they are working together or how they are in conflict with each other. This week we have a stack of awkward aspects invoking the awkward side to the symbolism of the planets, and it’s a bit like moving forwards while blindfolded or wandering around a maze. There is a path to follow, it’s just not that obvious. Or someone’s scrawled all over the map!
Let’s get our feet on the floor and start with some basic craft, on the subject of aspects –
The 5 Major Aspects
- Conjunction – planets positioned next to each other, 8 degrees orb (ie up to 8 degrees between them, either side). Harmonious or inharmonious, depending on the planets/signs involved.
- Opposition – planets 180 degrees (6 signs) apart, 8 degree orb. This aspect is formed when the two planets are in opposite signs. Inharmonious, the opposition symbolizes conflict or the open challenge to be faced.
- Trine – planets 120 degrees (4 signs) apart, 8 degree orb. This aspect is formed when the two planets are in the same element – a strong alliance, positive, helpful and harmonious.
- Square – planets 90 degrees (3 signs) apart, 8 degree orb. This aspect is formed when the two planets are in the same mode – at odds with each other, stressful, a source of friction, inharmonious.
- Sextile – planets 60 degrees (2 signs) apart, 6 degree orb. This aspect is formed when the two planets are both in either feminine or masculine signs – easy, friendly and harmonious.
We’ve got two trines coming at the end of the week. The road to those is however booby trapped with two major squares, and a long list of quinqunxes –
- Quinqunx – or the Inconjunct – planets 150 degrees (5 signs) apart, 2 degree orb. Awkward by name, awkward by nature as the planets share no element or mode and therefore have no meeting point, for good or ill. It speaks of blind spots, discord and the incurable incompatibility of mismatches. Inharmonious.
So if you’re experiencing feelings of overwhelm or finding it hard to get organized the reassuring point is that you’re definitely not alone. This is the kind of week that seems designed to unsettle us at quite a deep level, asking us to question rather than ignore, to recognize where we put on our blindfolds rather than opening our eyes. This is uncomfortable. But life definitely has a way of bringing us the same issue over and over again until we get it resolved.
Mercury winged Messenger of the Gods is at full speed and is the opening and closing act of the week. Everything else is sandwiched in the middle. Mercury starts on a tetchy or even explosive note, squaring up to rebel and rug puller Uranus, at his most troublesome as he is “stationary retrograde”, appearing to be at a total standstill as he gets read to switch direction. If you have planets or Angles at or close to 10 degrees of the Fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) you will already be aware of a situation that’s rocking the boat and/or you’ll be aware that life sometimes just doesn’t want to go to plan. Well not your plan anyway.
Challenging Mercury aspects can be a bit like having a retrograde Mercury (let’s get everyone running around in small circles) and that will be an even more important point to bear in mind at the end of the week when we get the string of mismatched combinations to all the major planets currently in Capricorn. Here’s the full sequence –
Monday 10 August
- Mercury 10 Leo square Uranus 10 Taurus 13.53
Friday 14 August
- Mercury 18 Leo quinqunx Jupiter 18 Capricorn 12.30
Saturday 15 August
- Mercury 20 Leo quinqunx Neptune 20 Pisces 06.15
- Uranus turns retrograde 10.41 Taurus 15.27
Sunday 16 August
- Mercury 23 Leo quinqunx Pluto 23 Capricorn 14.38
As a general rule follow the usual things for a retrograde Mercury survival guide. Top of the list will be to make no assumptions, to double check all important arrangements especially where paperwork or travel is concerned, and not to force any square pegs into round holes. To say that things are not as they seem is probably putting it mildly, but there will also be a theme of having to roll with the things that are simply beyond your control.
This includes all matters related to the virus control. Uranus is so often the spoke in the wheel but don’t forget that this is also the planet of the collective, everything from your social circle to mankind at a universal level. Retrograde moments always carry the “going back” symbolism in one way or another and for many communities across the globe there will undoubtedly be a return to stricter lockdown measures.
The Sun also blazing a trail through Leo makes the same series of aspects throughout the week –
Tuesday 11 August
- Sun 19 Leo quinqunx Jupiter 19 Capricorn 07.36
Wednesday 12 August
- Sun 20 Leo quinqunx Neptune 20 Pisces 15.34
Saturday 15 August
- Sun 23 Leo quinqunx Pluto 23 Capricorn 11.11
Without wishing at all to be alarmist it has to be said that this is a risky picture in terms of the spread of the virus. The Sun is the life force, the quinqunx is the blind spot aspect and it’s also an aspect that is associated with illness. So this is NOT the time to relax your social distancing rules. Err on the side of caution, even if it includes cancelling something you were looking forward to. Stay within your own safe parameters and amongst your safe people.
Otherwise this is a “ne’er the twain shall meet” type picture. Getting someone to think as you do will probably be just as impossible as it would be the other way around. Don’t ignore major incompatibility issues in any key relationship and especially if you’re attracted to someone new who is clearly not going to fit into your lifestyle, who may be unavailable and so on.
All the Sun and Mercury difficult aspects also carry themes of confusion or deception. If two and two are suddenly making five something is wrong. In other words, if something isn’t adding up then it isn’t adding up for a reason. That reason may take a while to come to light but it’s probably a good idea not to do anything on a trust arrangement right now. Goalposts are being moved every five minutes. Double check your own convictions or understanding wherever necessary, you might just have got it wrong, and also share your thoughts and fears with those who have your best interests at heart. Keeping things in perspective is another major theme for this week.
Probably the most important aspect is the second square of the week, as Mars in Aries continues his journey that involves squaring up to the major planets in Capricorn. These are important in themselves but even more so because Mars will be turning retrograde next month and coming back again. This means that the squares to Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto will all happen three times rather than being one offs. Last week we had the first Mars square Jupiter, that coincided with the Full Moon square Uranus, which was the astrology for the devastating explosion in Beirut, which happened within two hours of that Mars – Jupiter square being exact.
Here are the dates for Mars’ three squares to these slower moving planets –
- Mars square Jupiter 4 August, 19 October, 23 January
- Mars square Pluto 13 August, 9 October, 23 December
- Mars square Saturn 24 August, 29 September, 15 January
At a universal level this is sadly the astrology of disasters and also unrest. Mars is the god of war and his looming retrograde period means that he’ll be spending 6 months in fiery Aries instead of the usual 2 months. Aries is the sign of the individual so it doesn’t take much symbolic deduction to see how we are all separately as well as collectively up against the challenges of the pandemic. I said from the very beginning that if you take this disaster personally then you will definitely suffer more. We’re all in this together, like it or not, and by the time this is over – and it will be over – there will hardly be a single person on this planet who hasn’t been affected in one way or another, to one extent or another.
So sharpen your awareness and vigilance midweek for the first square to Pluto –
Thursday 13 August
- Mars 23 Aries square Pluto 23 Capricorn 08.06
Again as a survival guide probably the best thing you can do with your personal challenges is to take the ego (Aries) out of the equation. Stand back and don’t get into a fight, or at least choose your fights very carefully. Is it worth it? If you’re up against someone else’s ego, anything from touchiness to full blown egotism, or anything that smacks of being out of control, take yourself out of the firing line wherever possible. Self protection feels like an important theme here.
Mars rules all our heated emotions so anger management is also a theme to look out for, whether it’s your own or someone else’s! Look at where you’re directing your passion and at what/who may be a lost cause. Pluto rules both power and control battles and endings. Relationships already at the end of their shelf life may end acrimoniously even when it’s clear that there’s no going back. Mars is speed too, so slow down. No road rage please.
At some level we’re all resistant to change, don’t we just love the safety zone of all that is familiar and often we hang on to things simply because we’ve already invested so much time, energy and commitment. But the end of the week brings the Sun and Mercury trines to Mars, and this feels like a light at the end of the tunnel or at least some clear signposts with regards to what is needed or where/how you can get the best results. Note that the Mercury – Mars trine is exact in the early hours of Monday so it’s “applying” (in the process of becoming exact) over the whole weekend as is the Sun – Mars combination –
Sunday 16 August
- Sun 24 Leo trine Mars 24 Aries 15.03
Monday 17 August
- Mercury 24 Leo trine Mars 24 Aries 06.30
If nothing else don’t hang on to what is not working in your life. When we give up anything that’s unhealthy we create the space for new and healthier things to take their place. This is easier said than done but decisions made from the position of good self esteem do revitalize us. From tangled webs to illumination may feel like an impossibly long way to go in the space of a week but the positive side to this pandemic continues to be reappraisal, being reminded of how important and valuable life is, and of how we owe it to ourselves to make the best use of our time here. If your past dovetails beautifully with your present and future life and plans, then great. If it doesn’t, it’s time to move on. Time waits for none of us.
with love from Greece