The Astrology Blog 11 October 2021
All times in BST
“Tomorrow never comes – it is always today.”
Rajneesh, also known as Osho, was an Indian godman and mystic
“You are what you do, not what you say you’ll do.”
RETROGRADE MERCURY – THE STORY SO FAR!
And the top prize goes to …. Facebook. On Monday evening Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger all went down and it didn’t take us long to realize that this wasn’t a local problem for any of us but a worldwide outage.
This totally fitted with the first applying (in the making) aspect of last week, which was Mercury quinqunx Neptune, exact on Tuesday afternoon. Last week’s blog started with –
It’s a dodgy start to the week. Mercury in the blind spot aspect (exactly five signs apart) is bad enough, but throw in the retrograde and the fact that it’s to nebulous Neptune and this is a classic picture of confusion or deception. Definitely don’t believe everything you hear or be aware of the potential for crossed wires, themes of “lost in translation” or no answers at all.
With all our usual means of communication having collapsed we did at least still have emails. Unless you worked for Facebook. In the next day news it was reported –
Staff passes had stopped working, as had their emails. “The people trying to figure out what this problem was couldn’t even physically get into the building,” New York Times technology reporter Sheera Frenkel told BBC News. Facebook said the problems had been caused when “configuration changes on the backbone routers” created a fault which, in turn, affected the company’s internal systems.
Whatever that means ….
Facebook’s problems didn’t stop there. Just the day before the outage the news was full of whistleblower former employee Frances Haugen, going public with her grave concerns about how the social media company is deliberately and subversively run for profit at the amoral expense of safety and mental health, especially for the younger generation –
“The company’s leadership knows ways to make Facebook and Instagram safer and won’t make the necessary changes because they have put their immense profits before people. Congressional action is needed … as long as Facebook is operating in the dark, it is accountable to no one. And it will continue to make choices that go against the common good.”
Last week’s blog also started with the first UK headlines within 24 hours of Mercury turning retrograde, the textbook starting gun for “problems with transport and communication”, which were all about the petrol shortage. Not a shortage caused by actual dwindling resources, but by the lack of enough available petrol … because of the shortage of drivers … because of post-Brexit immigration rules making the job impossible for many foreign drivers … all compounded by panic buying.
If you want to read about real shortages then look at what’s happening in Lebanon, including a 24 hour blackout. “For the past 18 months Lebanon has endured an economic crisis and extreme fuel shortages. That crisis has left half its population in poverty, crippled its currency and sparked major demonstrations against politicians.”
Both the UK and Lebanon stories are a clear illustration of how problems generally don’t come from nowhere. There’s usually an ongoing process of some kind that can be traced back, a starting point that leads to a knock on effect. One of the hallmarks of being in a retrograde Mercury phase is to become aware of these connections and their inevitable results. For all those who voted for Brexit, would they vote for it now, now that the true implications are kicking in?
At a more personal level look at the issues in your own life that may have long roots stretching into the past, near or distant. Don’t ignore whatever is yelling for your attention. Also as Mercury is retrograding through Libra, sign of partnership, relationship and commitment issues are particularly sensitive. Again, family friction or divorces don’t happen overnight. The buildup of resentments or breakups happen over a matter of months, or very often years.
But, very often, just as with the petrol crisis the first instinct is to panic, to hold on even more tightly to what we have and if possible to get even more of it in reserve. This is the point at which we do something or stay somewhere for all the wrong reasons, or buy something we don’t need (toilet rolls), or bury our heads even deeper in the sand in the hope that it will go away, whatever “it” might be.
In my 30 years of doing readings I’ve learned that the moment I hear that the needed decision or action is connected to, “when I lose weight, when I have the money, when he/she changes, after his/her/the dog’s birthday, next year, when I have another qualification,” etc, then 99/100 it’s not going to happen, any time soon or possibly ever.
Safety zones do of course have their benefits, they feel um, safe, and “good enough” which isn’t always a bad thing, but they’re not great for progress, true fulfillment or for discovering that empowering thing called confidence. Hence the choice of this week’s quotes.
One of my sister’s mantras, and she would be the first to say she learned it the hard way, was “Do It Now”. I try to follow this, of course it’s not always a magic wand, but I think all of us have got a streak of procrastination somewhere in us that can all too easily get in the way of what we really want to do or achieve. And that can be day to day stuff too, not just life ambitions! The way to pay off debt or stay on top of housework or build a business is not to pray for a windfall or a cleaning fairy but to do a little something about it, no matter how small, every day. In this way our mountains become molehills. I speak from experience!
And the final word on that Mercury – Neptune was that I said look out for water problems. Right on cue, our summer came to a screeching halt, temperatures plummeted, torrential thunderstorms are ongoing and we even had text messages from the government warning us of extreme weather conditions and basically to secure anything that could become flying debris. When I drove through Nidri yesterday it was full of miserable looking tourists in wet weather gear with nothing to do. Reminder to self, this is why I never try to run courses in October because this is what can happen.
WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING THIS WEEK?
We have another week to go of living with this retrograde Mercury but the interesting writing is already on the wall. From this coming Friday Mercury will be stationing (appearing to stand still in readiness for turning direct) and the slower moving Jupiter has already been stationing for a couple of weeks. Saturn is leading the way and turned direct in the early hours of this morning, which is like a great big cosmic foot coming off the brake pedal, and the other two planets will follow suit as we go into next week –
Monday 11 October
- Saturn turns direct at 7 Aquarius 03.18
Monday 18 October
- Jupiter turns direct at 22 Aquarius 06.31
- Mercury turns direct at 10 Libra 16.18
Back to basic keywords Saturn is blockages and obstacles. I love how astrology works at a literal level. Having tried for a couple of weeks to get hold of the guy to clean out my wood burner before daring to use it again (regular readers may remember the near disaster last Feb) he turned up this morning. It was so choked with carbon (again) that had baked solid in this summer’s scorching heat that he had to drill it all out. Now it’s safe and useable.
Remember that both Saturn and Jupiter are turning around in Aquarius, sign of groups and the collective. Headline news this morning is that Sydney’s lockdown is over, Canberra is due to exit lockdown on Friday, while Melbourne is predicted to reopen in late October. Sydney’s lockdown began in late June, within a week of Jupiter (freedom) turning retrograde and within a month of Saturn (authority, restrictions). The army was called in to enforce the rules. Today is being called NSW Freedom Day.
Pluto (endings, nothingness, control) has also just turned direct (last Wednesday 6 Oct) after being retrograde for 5 months and, strikingly, all four of these SD (Stationary Direct) planets feature in this week’s aspects, and btw this word is simply astrology jargon for the moments when two planets align with each other, for good or bad.
This means that the aspects this week are all in bold and underlined, that in some sense they’re carrying between them the message of these turning points. If any of the major aspects this week align with planets or Angles in your own natal chart ie within a couple of degrees, then they will be even more significant for you at a personal level.
But even if they don’t there’s a lot of change at a universal level, so pay very close attention to what unfolds for you this week and also to anyone who comes into your life, or to anyone who’s suddenly playing a key role. There’s almost certainly a lot more to come, even with or especially with something that has been stuck for months or even longer.
We start with the love and money planet Venus aligning by harmonious sextile (exactly 2 signs apart) with Saturn –
Wednesday 13 October
- Venus 7 Sagittarius sextile Saturn 7 Aquarius 20.28
This aspect is further enhanced by the fact that it’s Venus’ first meeting since moving into Sagittarius last Thursday, so a brand new optimistic journey is also linked to Saturn’s turning point. It’s definitely an encouraging picture for love stuff of the serious (Saturn) kind, such as commitment or finding a relationship (look out for the foreigner, overseas links or online or long distance romance) or for getting money making matters or projects of any kind off the drawing board. Saturn loves a project!
Conversely, this is the stuff of good endings. If you want out of a job or a relationship or a place or a promise you wish you’d never made – whatever – grab your chance. Ever heard of Cheryl Strayed? Get her book – Tiny Beautiful Things – a collection of her agony aunt letters. One of her pearls of wisdom that I remember from the first time I read this book was, Wanting to leave is enough.
In other words, we’re conditioned to believe that we have to explain ourselves, rationalize our guilt and give specific reasons, to ourselves as well as to others. But this just keeps us in “head” stuff instead of in the world of feelings. I never tire of quoting Anita Moorjani who says that “feelings are underrated”. So where are you over-thinking it (retrograde Mercury in umming and ahhing, look at all sides Libra) instead of just doing it (planets turning direct)?
This Venus – Saturn is an important aspect for me as my Sun is at 9 Sagittarius, and I already have an inkling about what this will be about. In my chart the Sun rules my 9th House which is where we locate publishing and on Tuesday, as this aspect is applying, I have an appointment with a new publishing company to discuss books. More news as it’s made on that one! But as with all important aspects it will almost certainly turn out to be about something else as well. They are rarely about just one thing.
Our stationing Mercury also picks up an aspect to Venus at the weekend, the day before he turns directs. This is another indication that Mercury turning direct in Libra (Venus’s sign) is going to be linked at least partly to Venusian concerns – which are primarily love and money, but also anything that makes your life sweeter, easier or more enjoyable. This aspect also falls smack in the middle of solar aspects to Jupiter and Pluto who are travelling in tandem but one sign apart –
Friday 15 October
- Sun 22 Libra trine Jupiter 22 Aquarius 12.47
Sunday 17 October
- Mercury 10 Libra sextile Venus 10 Sagittarius 02.25
- Sun 24 Libra square Pluto 24 Capricorn 13.10
Mercury – Venus combinations generally add up to good (Venus the Benefic) news (Winged Messenger) and all communications of the welcome kind, especially as the link between these two planets happens literally as Mercury is stationing. So this weekend is THE TIME for love/money (Venus) talk (Mercury) – eg pillow talk, heart to hearts, negotiated decisions, meeting someone, being asked out/doing the asking, an ex coming back, healing rifts, asking for/giving help, doing deals and so on. You get the picture. Whatever comes together for you at the weekend is positive in itself but also for the future, eg things or people you can rely on.
The accompanying Solar aspects indicate that some relationship – arrangements (Libra) issues will also be in the context of the Jupiter – Pluto wrapping paper, a combination which basically adds up to opportunities but of the no going back kind, it’s all or nothing.
These solar aspects are one offs simply because the Sun is never retrograde. But Mercury is playing into the pattern three times – the final one to come – and the triple alignment itself of Jupiter and Pluto also has one more come, here’s the sequence that takes two months to play out, with the dates to look back on and the ones to watch –
- 20 Sept, 4 Oct, 1 Nov – Mercury trine Jupiter
- 22 Sept, 1 Oct, 2 Nov – Mercury square Pluto
- 20 April – Jupiter/Pluto 27 Aquarius – 27 Capricorn
- 11 Sept – Jupiter/Pluto 24 Aquarius – 24 Capricorn
- 27 Nov – Jupiter/Pluto 25 Aquarius – 25 Capricorn
Look out for anything that fits the theme of old orders changing, often characterized by loss/absence first and then the process of readapting. Transformation is rarely an overnight sensation. This would seem to describe the path of the pandemic, as reflected in the words of Australia’s Premier –
Mr Perrottet warned that NSW was bracing for a surge in Covid cases, but said the healthcare system had been preparing for weeks. “We’ll see hospitalisations increase… but we need to learn to live alongside the virus.”
And I’ll leave you with the usual checklist for Mercury’s turnaround, the things to look out as from the end of this week,
With love from Greece
MERCURY STATIONARY DIRECT
What to Expect – out of our control
- Decisions dropped on us, tipping points and turnarounds for the better – even if it doesn’t seem that way we’re being steered onto the right path
- Events that started around three weeks ago reveal their full significance or consequences. Matters that have been stuck now start to pick up speed OR are no longer important
- Breaking news, expected or unexpected, that affects you or someone close to you
- Information comes to light, the truth outs, secrets are revealed or feelings are declared – you’ll have the chance to see things as they really are
- Your own or other people’s changes of heart/mind either way – ie from no to yes or vice versa
- Light bulb flashes of the “I get it now” type insights
- People get back to you or you get back to them – deals get done and papers get signed
- The right person appears to deal with the frustrating problem beyond our own expertise
- The reappearance of someone or something that was first important three to four weeks ago
- Finding what you’ve been looking for – whether it’s lost objects, spiritual needs or the right partner
What to Do – within our control
- Engage fully with who or what enters your life or springs back to life, especially with who or what is motivational for you
- Say yes to a date, or do the asking yourself – this person could be a whole new journey of discovery
- Initiate conversations – you’ll be amazed at what they reveal and where they lead
- Have you been over thinking it? Resolve to stop talking about something and just DO IT!
- Turn negatives into positives, take head out of sand, muster your courage and determination – there’s at least one thing that, with some renewed energy and a fresh approach, can now come good
- Stop people pleasing, pretending or avoiding – be true to you and tackle the things you’ve been putting off
- Make those decisions, especially when changing anything that’s suited others but which isn’t that great for you
- Make job applications or chase up one already made – insist on an interview, it could be the best thing you ever did
- Update and upgrade your phone, tablet or desktop, and get your head around using new technology of any kind that could be useful to you
- Fill up your diary with things to look forward to, out in the world where possible or online. Plan in immediately at least one thing that you absolutely love doing and can still do regardless of whatever restrictions you’re up against – life is still to be enjoyed, not endured.