The Astrology Blog 15 June 2020
All times in BST
” In the age of technology there is constant access to vast amounts of information. The basket overflows; people get overwhelmed; the eye of the storm is not so much what goes on in the world, it is the confusion of how to think, feel, digest, and react to what goes on.”
Cris Jami – 29 May 1987, American poet, essayist, existential philosopher and songwriter
Whenever I’m teaching, groups or individuals, I tell my students that they’ll probably be sick of the word “context” by the end of a course. This statement is at first greeted with smiles and laughs, but is gradually and increasingly treated more seriously as the point becomes self evident. At first it’s dismaying to the student to discover that there is no straight and single answer to, “What does that mean?” But this is possibly the biggest misconception, with astrology and the tarot, that planets or cards mean something definite and in advance.
The world of symbolism has to be “unpacked”. What did you dream about last night? Whatever flow of images selected by your unconscious as you slept will carry information, but these messages in symbolic code get through only with the act of deciphering and interpretation. When you arrive at the right interpretation the moment is unmistakable. The meaning is clear and it smacks you between the eyes.
Each tarot card works in the same way. For example. the 3 of Swords as an outcome card for a relationship would be showing the road to heartbreak. The same card for a question about any other desire or situation would indicate disappointment or regret. It can never be a “Oh yes everything’s wonderful” card, but the real whys and hows lie in the querent’s story.
Similarly, the planets carry their own universal meanings and have their own very definite dominions, so it’s not a case of anything goes, as astrology critics are so fond of announcing. Venus is Venus, Saturn is Saturn and their symbolism is not interchangeable. For example, Venus rules love, Saturn rules boundaries – not the other way around. But Venus also rules lots of other things, as do all the planets. For example, Venus is money, pleasures and produce, especially anything fragrant like roses, or foods that are sweet and satisfying. Thus sex and chocolate are both Venusian!
CAUSE AND EFFECT
There are basically three ways of using celestial information in the predictive sense –
- How is it showing out in the world? (Mundane astrology)
- How is it showing events in the life of the individual? (Natal astrology)
- How can it provide answers to specific questions? (Horary astrology)
None of these are CAUSAL. In other words, the planets don’t MAKE things happen. They reflect back to us what IS happening, hence the maxim of, As Above, So Below. The cosmos is a vast mirror, and the more we gaze into it the clearer the picture becomes. In theory!
At the moment we have an even stronger awareness of context, how the unfolding astrology is reflecting the worldwide picture of Covid, but also how it continues to reflect events in our own lives. As a rough rule of thumb, if you have planets or Angles at or very close to the degrees/signs that are prominent in any week, then the current astrological activity will apply more powerfully to your own life.
WHAT’S HAPPENING THIS WEEK?
I’ve chosen this week’s quote as a perfect reminder for the experience of overwhelm. It was obviously written before the arrival of the pandemic, which just goes to show that modern life was hard enough anyway in terms of being constantly exposed to a nonstop flow of information. This is why I often recommend taking a break from the news, as a way of switching off the source of noise, fear and anxiety, a way of creating some quiet space, bringing us back into our own centre. You can rest assured that if anything major happens that you really do need to know, someone else will tell you.
This is a huge week, so the more you can root yourself in the ground of your own life, the more you can find that peaceful spot of the eye of the storm, the better you will fare. We start with the Sun lighting up the two giants Jupiter and Pluto, who are travelling side by side this year, making three exact conjunctions in the process. We had the first one in April and the second one will be exact at the end of the month –
- 5 April
- 30 June
- 13 November
The conjunction repeats as both planets turned retrograde after the first meet up, so they come back together, and will do again after both planets resume direct motion. It’s a long and circuitous dance, treading on each other’s toes –
- Pluto turned retrograde 25 Capricorn – 25 April (will turn direct 22 Capricorn 4 October)
- Jupiter turned retrograde 27 Capricorn – 14 May (will turn direct 17 Capricorn 13 September)
This conjunction has been and continues to be stunning symbolism not so much for the virus itself but for the worldwide effects. Jupiter = all things overseas/growth and abundance and Pluto = wipeout. Travel and tourism pretty much ground to a halt, and the economy has taken a hammering. 5 April was THE DATE that Easy Jet grounded all their flights.
TO TRAVEL OR NOT TO TRAVEL?
The world of tourism is doing everything it can to get started again and in this morning’s news it was announced that Easy Jet are today starting a reduced schedule of flights, mostly within the UK but some around Europe too. Non essential shops also open today in the UK and France is cautiously reopening its borders. The astrology for all such moves would suggest that this is premature, starting with the Sun picking out this conjunction by that blind spot aspect, the quinqunx, formed when planets align five signs apart –
Monday 15 June
- Sun 24 Gemini quinqunx Pluto 24 Capricorn 02.55
Tuesday 16 June
- Sun 25 Gemini quinqunx Jupiter 25 Capricorn 08.34
There is no failsafe system for international travel. The moment that people start moving around the world the virus will go with them, especially piggybacking on those who are asymptomatic, so testing is literally the only answer. In itself the Solar picture alone reflects that governments are still working in the dark. And talking of what happens when the light goes out we also have the Solar Eclipse this week, almost exactly at the moment of the Summer Solstice and immediately after Mars too plays into the Jupiter – Pluto conjunction. Here’s the sequence –
Friday 19 June
- Mars 24 Pisces sextile Pluto 24 Capricorn 00.04
Saturday 20 June
- Mars 25 Pisces sextile Jupiter 25 Capricorn 08.57
- Summer Solstice Sun ingress Cancer 22.45
Sunday 21 June
- New Moon/Solar Eclipse 00.21 Cancer 07.43
Eclipses are basically game changers. There’s little doubt that the summer we would have liked to have will be eclipsed. Travel will carry huge price tags and if I were you I’d stay put. In March I moved my London workshops to new August dates, but suddenly this is only 6 weeks away, and I’m definitely cancelling the trip. Workshops in a shorter version will be happening online later in the summer.
The middle Jupiter – Pluto conjunction at the end of June not only suggests that many will choose not to travel, but also that many travel options will disappear anyway, such as tour operators going bust or countries finding themselves unable to handle the logistics of testing thousands of incoming visitors.
At an inner level remember that Solstice literally means the moment when the Sun (Sol) appears to stand still (Stice). So the longest day of the year is a celebration of the Sun, the life force. Putting this moment in the context of a somewhat crazy week there is no better time for finding that inner stillness and learning from some inner contemplation and reflection, even if everything else is going nuts.
THE ECLIPSE & PERSONAL CHOICES
The end of this week finds us in the heart of Eclipse season, with two Lunar Eclipses flanking the more important Solar one –
- Lunar Eclipse 5 June at 15 Sagittarius
- Solar Eclipse 21 June at 0 Cancer
- Lunar Eclipse 5 July at 13 Capricorn
Again we’re looking at intricate patterns, in this case the alignment of the Earth, Moon and Sun, overshadowing each other, stealing light and power. One body moves in between the other two, the Earth being in the middle at the time of a Lunar Eclipse and the Moon being in the middle at the time of a Solar Eclipse –
- A Solar Eclipse – occurs when the Sun is obscured by the shadow of the Moon at the time of a New Moon
- A Lunar Eclipse – occurs when the Moon is obscured by the shadow of the Earth at the time of a Full Moon
Eclipses often signal tipping points of change, either in terms of something being thrust upon us and totally out of our control (like a company going bust!) or in terms of decisions or happenings that can even change the course of our lives. The rise and fall of individuals is a key Eclipse theme, both out in the world and within personal relationships, so Eclipses have way of sorting out winners and losers, such as affairs or any other kind of competitive situation.
In terms of timing events can happen on or very close to an Eclipse date but they can also act as a turning point of inevitability, a fuse is lit and nothing can stop it from burning out to its end, its date with Destiny. In this sense the message is not about what to do in the proactive sense, or how to make something happen, but to engage fully with whatever does happen. This week events will be set in motion and in the coming weeks we’ll see the results. Also in terms of interpretation the important question is to ask not just what is this planet, but who is this planet?
THE CLIMATE OF UNCERTAINTY
In the middle of all of this, as if we didn’t have enough to contend with, we enter into Mercury’s next retrograde cycle in the middle of the week, an event that happens three times a year for three weeks at a time –
Thursday 18 June
- Mercury turns retrograde at 14.44 Cancer 06.00
Mercury will backtrack to 5 degrees of Cancer and turn direct again on 12 July, and will eventually enter the next sign of Leo (the Sun’s sign) on 5 August. In my view this is the absolute earliest date for travel decisions. So there’s a long way to go.
In the meantime regardless of what is going on in the world, here’s a reminder of the usual checklist of the kind of themes to look out for when Mercury (planet of communication, information and travel) is retrograde. Many of these themes will be even more obvious than usual, some you may already be experiencing and others may yet unfold during the next three weeks –
- Guard against trying to construct situations or distressing yourself with regard to anything beyond your control. Forcing any kind of round pegs into square holes won’t be worth the effort and could cost you dearly
- Adopt the mantra of one day at a time … going too far ahead creates anxiety, especially with problems which have no clear or immediate answers
- Know that there are things you don’t know – yet
- Try to operate by “re” words – review, revise, research, reappraise, rethink, repair, redress the balance and so on. Also remember rest and relaxation, give the brain some time off and try not to put yourself under unnecessary pressure
- Expect cancellations or rescheduling of appointments or personal arrangements
- Buy yourself time wherever needed – keep options open
- When in doubt, check it out – second hand opinions are a dead cert for getting hold of the wrong end of the stick – and don’t believe everything you hear
- Write things down and double check everything – forgetfulness, being distracted, inattention etc can be a troublesome theme
- Back up all your computer work
- Don’t delete any documents – you may need them at a later date
- Getting back to ideas on the back burner
- Getting back in touch with those who’ve been neglected or important to you in the past – let them know how much they matter
- Keep a close watch on all belongings – especially keys or anything linked to communication such as phones, laptops, tablets, cameras etc and don’t even think about buying new ones for the time being
- The same for cars – never buy any mode of transport under a retro Mercury
- Plan any journey with extra care, don’t trust to luck, don’t travel unless you have to and make sure tickets are covered on your insurance
- Kill your speed when driving – allow extra time for getting there slowly but safely
- Take extra care with form filling/signing on dotted lines – paperwork and admin of all kinds are a minefield
- Decide to ease the pain or cool the resentment. Write the letter you can’t send or you’ll never send – whether it’s to someone you’ve lost or to someone you want to strangle it’s great therapy
- Turning this the other way around you can also write a letter to yourself from someone you’ve lost – which is even greater therapy. I’ve done this in the past, from my twin Sue, and it was unbelievably powerful
- Stop trying to fix others – just focus on yourself. Changes starts with us, and within us, from the inside out, not the other way around
- Assume nothing. No matter how certain a situation might seem there is a good chance that it will morph into something else over the next couple of weeks – the “x” factor is at work …
- Reserve the right to change your mind/keep an open mind. As you start to see something from a different angle the truth, reality or logistics will evolve in a way that you couldn’t possibly have planned or expected
- KEEP A SENSE OF HUMOUR J
We all have an innate dislike of uncertainty and this has become our biggest challenge. Isn’t this why we turn to astrology, to find out what is happening, to get a handle on the things that disturb or confuse us, or to find out when a matter will be resolved, or just to find out when “something nice” will happen? Frustratingly all of the current astrology adds up to some kind of NOT knowing, and possibly even doing more damage than good by trying to rush things.
Confusion, uncertainty or even deception are also underlined by the fact that another giant Neptune is now “stationary retrograde”, ie getting ready to turn retrograde next Tuesday. He’s now “stuck” at 20/21 Pisces for a couple of months as he makes the turn and is therefore at a virtual standstill. There are days when it feels as if the whole world is trying to swim against the tide. So back to my original point, do what you can to avoid overwhelm, tread water and find your centre of calm. It’s there.
Until next week, with love from Greece