New Moon Eclipse musings

Happy new moon solar eclipse!

I have wanted to come here and write a blog post for a while now, but have been so busy that it was almost impossible.

I’m all packed and ready to go again. London still feels like home, but the world is calling me. Next destination: Athens.

Let the digital nomadic life begin!

I heard that some astrologers talk about eclipses not being a good time to begin anything, but I am a strong believer of connecting with your instincts and feelings as a way of knowing better. A way of knowing what is better for YOU.

When it comes to natal charts, no astrological rule can be absolute.

Eclipses are not always traumatic, as observed by Bernadette Brady, sometimes eclipses can reflect very happy changes. This is how I personally feel now. This is a very happy change for me and my partner, who btw has the new moon eclipse right on his Venus and DSC, talk about timings!

No, I didn’t plan or calculated to move countries on a new moon eclipse. Although a professional astrologer, I don’t always keep an eye on the ephemeris when it comes to making decisions. Maybe I should, but oftentimes I see beautiful synchronicities in life events happen naturally.

Like this one now, for example.

Anyhow, this new moon eclipse has a very beautiful energy with Venus and Jupiter conjoined in Pisces (at the very degree of Venus’ exaltation!). Abundance, forgiveness, healing, moving on to the next stage of our lives, cleaner from emotional debris. Inspiration, artistic and spiritual as well, are also potentially a great part of this configuration.

What would an inspiring life look like to YOU? How could you bring that to fruition?

Today is the day to ponder on that. To love yourself and to hold your deepest values close to your heart. To think of ways where you can align all different dimension of your life (your job, your relationships, your daily routines, etc) with those values. A perfect time also to inhabit you body – to nourish, look after and enjoy the pleasures of having one.

Give yourself a massive hug and whisper to yourself how much you appreciate all the effort.

The sabian symbols for this new moon configuration is also massively inspiring. For 10 degrees Taurus is ‘A woman sprinkling flowers’ and 27 degrees Pisces ‘A fertile garden under the full moon’.

What flowers would you like to see growing in the garden of your life? The ground is fertile now, be wise and present with the seeds you will be sprinkling.

Happy gardening everyone.

Transiting Nodes part 2

And here comes the lunar nodes again!

Over the years I have noticed a great interest in one of my blog posts called ‘Transiting Nodes’ , I just recently re-read and (apart from some typos :/ which my Virgo planets couldn’t help but notice) it dawned on me that here I am going through another interesting transit from the Nodes that I could share.

At the risk of sounding a bit ageist, (I am not!), I have to say that there is something quite interesting that happens when you’re interested in astrology for long enough as an adult.

(no, doing astrology when you’re 10 years old does not count here, sorry)

You get to see, little by little, all sorts of transits happening and being reflected by circumstances in your life. You learn astrology from another, more experiential, angle.

For example, in the article mentioned above, I was writing my observations when transiting North Node of the Moon made a conjunction to my ASC back in early 2013. That happened simultaneously with my Saturn return and a lot of lessons surrounding the Scorpio archetype and my personal experience of those symbols in my chart.

Now, transiting North Node in Taurus is making an exact conjunction to my DSC, the opposite transit to the one I had back in 2013.

What do I observe here? How is this playing out now?

A lot of it seems to be about relationships, at least in my life because my natal lunar North Node is in the 7th house anyway. So as much as I believe in the connection between the nodes and karmic relationships in general, I’m still not a hundred percent sure if this is because of my natal signature or not. And also, obviously, these transits were activating the ASC-DSC axis, the relationship axis.

But here are my insights nevertheless:

When I had my lunar node return, just a few months before the transit I’m having now, I was getting involved with a person that I’m still currently in a relationship with. Mind you, isolating transits is never a great policy, if there is something big happening to you, it might be worth checking everything that’s going on in the sky.

(In many occasions I see people commenting on an intense full Moon and how emotionally difficult it feels but they are also having a challenging transit from Pluto to their natal Moon. Yes, the full Moon might reflect an enhanced emotional atmosphere, but the Pluto transit is reflecting a challenge and change that is a lot deeper and more endurable.)

So I would say always keep an eye in every transit to your natal chart, know your planet’s degrees by heart, etc.

My other transits are also pointing out to changes in relationships, Pluto is trine my natal Venus, progressed Venus was conjoined Saturn, etc. But also the lunar node is conjoined my DSC – the way that this seems to be playing out for me is very much connected with changing the type of people that I get involved with.

Yes, the relationship seems to have a more karmic feeling as well, the amount of compatibility I have with this person is very different from what I felt before. There is no glamour or an overly romantic aura this time. Instead, there seems to be something very fundamentally human and ‘easy’.

I don’t mean easy as not having difficult feelings being triggered, I mean easy as to how we deal with those feelings together, how we can easily communicate with each other, etc.

So from 2013 when I was learning how to refine my attitudes and choices regarding relationships, for example how my own behaviour had an impact on my happiness or how to take more responsibility for the choices I made, I now came to the other side. How much can we grow when we make these choices based on actual compatibility, the lesson isn’t so focused on dealing with the consequences of my actions in relationships, but simply to relate.

When you are finally with the ‘right person’ the lessons and growth won’t stop there. What happens is that another kind of growth begins, a growth in togetherness. The old scripts are uncomfortably challenged again and again, old traumas are triggered, but there is someone else there with you. The dynamic is different.

So I still believe that transits from the lunar nodes point out to important developments and some kind of karmic growth. Relevant people seems to show up. (nodes in synastry seems to have the same effect)

Have you noticed the nodes transiting something in your chart? How did that play out for you?

Last Full Moon in Leo, the IC, insights, and novelty.

Last week there was a full moon in Leo, square the nodes, and it only dawned on me now that it was opposing my progressed Moon in Aquarius.

I have been keeping super busy, trying new mediums and ways to channel creativity and fill my days with astrology work. It has been truly exciting but it’s so easy to lose track of balance and end up overdoing something – in particular, overworking and not paying enough attention to the need for conscious down time.

I had a mini health crisis on the day of the full moon, with food poisoning and a lot of purging and lacking energy to do anything else other than rest. The situation then got me thinking, what was I not paying attention to?

Looking into the symbolism of the IC for a talk I gave to the AFAN yesterday was so insightful (again). Growth is remembering, as we spirally move from stretching out of, to falling back into our patterns again and again.

One of my favourite things about astrology is its relationship to cycles. The beauty and reassurance of cycles. Everything has its right time, don’t you worry. This too shall pass, etc.

Gardening can be really useful in that way too, as we interact with land and weather, we see the ciclic motion in which life unfolds. No need for anxiety, no need to rush or resent. There is a right time for everything.

Astrology too, can help us with that, and as I worked on my presentation for yesterday’s talk, the importance of the IC was highlighted as, amongst other things, our place of rest. And by rest here, I don’t mean going to sleep every night. I am thinking of conscious rest, ritualistic down time as opposed to closing our eyes and drifting away.

(nothing wrong with that, we obviously need a good night of sleep in order to heal and recharge daily)

How many of you out there have given importance to down time as much as you do to productivity? Do you place those activities in your calendar as you do with the other ‘more serious’ ones?

After this insightful, even if painful, full moon in Leo (which rules creativity, inner child and self expression) I was reminded to hear and consider those needs more seriously.

Novelty also deserves to have an important place in our busy schedules.

Mercurial Wanderings under Venus Retrograde…

Venus has turned retrograde with the last full moon in Gemini and has been hovering around Pluto for quite some time now and this post is a reflexive product of it somehow. As usual a mix of personal experience and food for thought which I hope you might find useful, or inspiring, or at least entertaining. 

Mercurial wanderings…

I sometimes find it amusing the way that our society works. Not that I am completely outside of it, of course not. But with the strong Aquarian, Uranian, 11th house and out of bounds emphasis in my natal chart, I confess that it feels like I am ‘out of bounds’ myself most of the time. I don’t think I always fully understand the logic behind some of our taken for granted agreements. 

I see a powerfully strong Capricorn theme when it comes to work ethics, productivity, goals, and visions of success. Ambition is very high rated, material gratification too. But I am also especially thinking about the idea of ‘professionalism’ here. 

When did we stop valuing humanness and buying into this concept that absolute detachment equals a more ‘professional’ and capable approach? Don’t get me wrong, I understand the need for ethics, in a deeper sense, I would say. But the coldness that usually accompanies the generally accepted ‘professionalism’ really hugs me, no, I mean bugs me. 

Another thing that comes to mind is how value is attributed to money and how much not having money has a detrimental effect on self-esteem. It is difficult to value yourself if not having enough money prevents you from having a voice, from making choices and being considered important by other members of society. 

As my secondary progressed ascendant slowly transitions from Sagittarius into Capricorn (it has already made the shift in Solar Arc direction last year), the more I see myself valuing professionalism and the material realm without losing sight of some of the questions stated above. I have most of the time considered myself a freedom loving and informal type of person – always hated the hypocrisy that sometimes being ‘professional’ makes you comply with.

But now I see myself getting increasingly tired of the hippish approach to life and really feeling the need to gather all my professional experience (which by now is kind of considerable as I’m no spring chick anymore…) and put it into one place. Have a brand – (did I really say that?!) – and make a proper income (whatever that means) solo from astrology work. Get myself deeply involved with the potential productivity, which is quite vast considering the possibilities that the internet and digital era offers us.   

You see, these words seem like a great example of what we could be doing during this cycle of retrogradation from Venus in Capricorn. Ask ourselves where we are going and if that place is truly aligned with our core values. I would also say, as I think about the shift that my progressed ascendant seems to be reflecting, this could be a great time for catching up with your shifting values too. What important and major themes in your life are slowly fading and losing their grip on you now? How aligned are you with your natural changes and the resulting new-born values within it? 

Recently, while I was trying to relax and enjoy the holiday season, I decided to reread my last journal – another great thing to do during one of the fast-moving planets’ cycles of retrogradation. It can be wonderfully insightful to be able to see your process and how (surprisingly) congruent it usually is with how you intuitively feel from moment to moment. 

This time I was surprised to see how much had been written about my search for a fulfilling relationship (another relevant topic for this Venus retrograde period) and how to get there by being clear about what I really want – my natal Venus/Neptune square has been transited by Pluto, whilst progressed Venus conjoined natal Saturn.

There is no healthy relationship without healthy boundaries. 

I can’t remember where I read this, or who mentioned it to me, but it is so true. 

In one entry from my journal, I wrote: 

‘Is this what self-worth looks like? Making difficult choices that puts your mental/emotional/physical wellbeing first? I guess so. His love life is a mess that I don’t want to be part of – There is no role for me there, at least, there isn’t a role that I am willing to play.’    

And later I wrote:

‘It is exciting to be able to be more myself and less of what people want me to be’, with the conclusion that more validation coming from within gives space for authenticity to be truly expressed out there. 

If you don’t feel comfortable being yourself around someone, or if that person does not support your authenticity and shows no appreciation for who you are, always making demeaning comments or trying to change you into what they want you to be, it is a sign that this might not be the right relationship for you. 

Remember, you are nobody else’s dream! (that used to be a little note to myself, natal Venus-Neptune’s things…) 

And these thoughts also remind me of psychotherapist Mark Vernon’s great article ‘What is Love?’ where, amongst other things, the author discuss the idea that love grows through conflict – and that in fact, the secret of a successful relationship many times is in our capacity to deal with disagreement and not necessarily in our capacity to love. In his words ‘an inability to handle conflict is a good predictor of divorce’.

According to Antoine de Saint-Exupéry ‘experience shows us that love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking together in the same direction’, and for that to happen, we have the obligation (with ourselves, more than anyone else) to know our values! To be (absolutely) aware of the importance and urgency of asking ourselves: what do I value the most in life, partnerships, career, daily choices, etc?! With Venus retrograde this is the perfect time for you to seriously (Capricorn) and deeply (conjoined Pluto) ask yourself these questions, get to the bottom-line of your core values and how much they might be changing. Cath up with them, ponder on them. Befriend them, for in a way, your values define who you are.

Rules with no absolutes

I thought that with the approaching retrogradation of Venus (December 19, the same day of the full moon), I could write a little about planetary dignities and relationships.

As usual, I can’t help but observe astrology playing out through my life and perspective. In fact, one of the things that excites me most about the subject is this: being a kind of lens which enables the extraction of meaning.

Some kind of mining meaning?!

Anyway,

It is commonly said that planets in the opposite sign of its rulership or exaltation are in a sort of ‘bad’ placement (for example when the Moon is in Scorpio or Mars in Taurus etc). I have been reflecting on that these days, particularly on how much I disagree with this idea.

I always go on and on about this with my students and fellow astrologers, that you can never tell how an astrology chart will be played out by its owner.

(I was going to write ‘until you meet them’, but not even then I don’t think.)

Human beings are complex creatures, and we might express the inherent symbolism in our charts differently at different times, or in different ways with different people, etc. There is no absolutes and no way to tell anything ‘for sure’ really.

I believe that astrological symbols are best used (when reading a person’s chart) as a way to brainstorm potential meaning rather than narrowing down into absolutes.

So here is an example from my experience to express my point.

Not long ago I was going out with someone who had natal Mars in Scorpio, a planet considered very powerfully placed in the sign of its rulership. That Mars did conjoin Pluto, that is true, but other than that, it only aspected Venus and Sun by sextile, so not massively debilitated.

Anyway, the individual in question did not have an ‘accomplished life’ in a traditional sense, did not harness his discipline (although being a Capricorn Sun as well!) and his trajectory was also somewhat chaotic (perhaps having his chart ruler conjoined Neptune had its influence here too).

The second individual I would like to mention had natal Mars in Cancer, the sign of its fall. This position has a bad rap and there is usually plenty of stories about passive aggression, drama, lack of direction in life, etc. Well, well, well, the man in question happens to have a lot of drive and ambition, had actually accomplished a lot professionally and, on top of that, had a very assertive and direct energy about him.

I truly admired and enjoyed the energy of that Mars in Cancer – assertive in a sensitive and receptive way rather than the coarseness and explosive anger I saw in the Mars in Scorpio person. Would that be true of every Mars in Scorpio or Mars in Cancer individuals? Obviously not.

Personal responsibility and accountability, when it comes to growth and emotional intelligence, still the main thing – much more than planets in exaltation or rulership or detriment.

This is just a simple and small example of how we are better off not making assumptions based on certain placements – the chart and the person that holds it need to be seen in its totality as much as possible. Even through our inevitably limited eyesight… if at least we can be aware of it…

Saturn and Inner Wisdom

Ok, so this writing just happened to me.

I was listening to music and having a cry when these words just started coming to me, so here they are.

But before that, just an astrological note. I see my Saturn in Scorpio being reflected in the text below, and when I recently found out (or maybe realised) that this planet sits exactly in the midpoint between my natal Venus square Neptune, I am convinced of its importance. Getting to know this Saturn and daring to integrate it a bit further seems to hold an important key for me and the potential success of my relationships. I think that the text below encapsulate a bit of it, a bit of my Saturn in Scorpio in the 12th at best.

Feeling things intensely isn’t the issue, the real issue is how we manage and work with the powerful energy that gets released/triggered with powerful emotions. Having someone that supports this process is of utter importance to me, for my growth and self-understanding. It is also paramount to not project and blame another for those feelings, either when they’re pleasant or unpleasant. Either way, we need taking a position of ownership rather than victimhood and to not act out onto another. 

The respect has to be mutual. 

It is clear to me that I cannot be with someone that cuts off emotions, or that find it all a bit too much. People that shy away from tears as if they’ve seen the antichrist disturbs me. Emotions are just that, something in motion, changeable. It is just a powerfully healing and transformative force. And I do not take the power of emotions for granted. This is why it is necessary to be like some sort of samurai, some kind of martial art master – to be brave enough to master your emotions. To ride them and see where the destination is, at least in that moment, for it changes from moment to moment. 

Bravery to be an observer of the change.

I see emotions like a powerful chariot, like the one in the Tarot, with a white and black horse pulling it around. Happy or sad, emotions drag us around, it pushes us to do things, to take chances, to cry in the bathroom when no one is looking. One thing is for sure, emotion is what heals, inflames, possess us at all times, so getting to know them, making them your acquaintance is, in my view, a positive way of relating with it. It is a powerfully transformative way of relating with your deepest and authentic self, of getting to know you…    

Aquarius and the solar principle

It has been an interesting couple of weeks for me. I have some friends visiting and staying with me in the flat, including my brother, so the house is full. From the incredible quiet and self exploring vibes, which was also very melancholic at times, I now barely have time for checking in with myself so I am sort of allowing this time to be some sort of holidays. (haven’t had one of those in ages!)

Being a Virgo myself, it is pretty difficult not to do things that are practical in some way and so I recently delved into some of the Astrological Association’s old recordings of lectures. I found a few of Liz Greene’s talks, which I already bought and heard almost all of them, but there are plenty of historical (like for example a Gauquelin’s lecture on their research) and other important talks available for very affordable prices. (I recommend if you haven’t checked it yet).

One of the lectures I heard was about Apollo’s chariot and the solar principle in response to collective cycles given by Liz Greene, a wonderful (as I would expect) and enlightening lecture that resonates with what we are about to go through with a strong emphasis on Aquarius.

In about a month we will witness a cluster of planets in Aquarius which includes the Sun, Venus, Saturn, Jupiter and Mercury (which will, by the way, be moving retrograde at that time), and Aquarius speaks about the collective well fare. As Greene has pointed out in her lecture, Scorpio is concerned with depth but Aquarius is concerned with breadth (one of the dangers, she claimed, is loosing sight of excellence when there is too much emphasis on this sign as it focus on getting the ‘common denominator’).

According to Liz Greene, ‘where there is aquarian energy, the sun is invoked’ as it is its complement and opposite and I really like this idea. I feel that with such a strong aquarian energy, including the Saturn-Uranus Square that will be happening throughout 2021, we will do well in connecting with our solar energies.

The Sun is what gives us our sense of personal meaning, destiny and purpose. It is the point in the chart where we potentially feel unique and with a special reason to be alive. Liz Greene pointed out how we are under the risk of loosing the will to be ourselves when we identify entirely with a group (which is one of the reasons why the Sun is in detriment in Aquarius), and she also spoke about the dangers that throwing responsibility away from the individual can cause, when the group, ‘the great WE who have rights’, is actually made of individuals.

My conclusion here is that we will do very well in taping into our solar energies as we see the aquarian energy increase, this will be a way of avoiding darker scenarios where individuality is sacrificed completely to the ‘benefit of the group’ (in authoritarian regimes for example). So have a look at your chart, where is the Sun placed, what sign, what house? What can be the unique gifts that you can contribute with?

As Greene claimed, if we are willing ‘to be somebody who has something to contribute with the group then we will see a group that truly transforms the individual’. And let the Aquarian season begin!

A note on astrology and responsibility

How did the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction go for you?

I was checking my social media stuff today and had a thought that seemed to be fiercely expressed by Charles E. Carter when he claimed that it could be ‘criminal to introduce astrology’ to some, as he believed only ‘people with moral courage should study their own maps, and only those endowed with more than average common sense and sense of responsibility should study others’ . Obviously the next question to be asked is who is to decide when someone has enough common sense or moral courage, which is another very pertinent question, especially during the beginning of a collective cycle with such an aquarian overtone like the one we are currently heading towards to.

But I did feel slightly overwhelmed, for the first time, with the thought of how the quick spread of information (and in many cases, misinformation) can affect the practice and role of astrology. I used to feel excited regarding some predictions about astrology’s rise as a subject of knowledge, thinking that my profession would somehow become more respectable socially, but there is a very shadowy potential for astrology becoming popular again and taught by very unexperienced people. There seems to be many charismatic young people out there eager to accumulate a whole legion of followers no matter what kind of information they are helping to spread.

I am not very old myself, but I feel that I have always been aware of the necessary hard work, time and dedication when it comes to learning something as powerful as astrology. How can we make sure, as a community of professionals, that there is some kind of rigorous process when it comes to teaching and practicing astrology? Would the benefits that the digital era has and is bringing to astrology be greater than the potential pitfalls?

Saturn’s shift to Aquarius

In order to celebrate the last few days of Saturn in Capricorn I decided to come here and try to write something.

The first thing that comes to mind is the idea that Saturn represents the principle of giving birth to ourselves. Becoming more solid as an individual requires a close relationship, and an authentic one, with what Saturn represents: (especially) taking responsibility for ourselves. I feel that whilst Saturn was in Capricorn the theme of authorities, including becoming one, was emphasised.

Capricorn talks about ambitions, our ambitions and those of the people in power positions have been under the spotlight. With the lunar nodes being in the axis of Cancer-Capricorn in the last year as well, many questions surrounding self-care, personal and family (inherited) values, career and personal life unbalance were under scrutiny. The pandemic has forced people to stay home, to rethink their work-personal life dynamics, to review values and goals.

With the nodes shifting to the Gemini-Sagittarius axis the theme of information, sharing ideas, reviewing belief systems is becoming more and more important. I feel that Saturn moving on to Aquarius has a resonance with this process.

Aquarius is an air sign, mostly concerned with abstract thinking, humanitarian causes and ideals. Perhaps now with Saturn’s shift to this sign, we are called to be more serious and cautious regarding our ideas and how we express them. It feels like somehow our ambitions and skills will have to be aligned with serving the group rather than having only personal gain as the ultimate goal.

Wherever the conjunction between Saturn and Jupiter at zero degrees Aquarius falls in your chart, reflects the potential area where you can offer something to the human family/community. With Saturn in Aquarius personal responsibility takes another dimension, the dimension of personal contribution to the whole.

We are individual cells of the collective, a change within can have the power of positive impact in a larger scale.

Where is Aquarius in your chart?!

A little on midpoints

Astrology as a subject for research never ceases to amaze me.

I have currently been looking into midpoints a bit more and what a fascinating topic. My Moon in Libra, ultra sensitive towards symmetry and beauty, really seems to love the idea of a midpoint being a place where integration can happen.

For the ones reading this and thinking ‘what the hell are midpoints?’, it is a very simple concept, for instance every single point or planet in the horoscope, in relation to another, will have a half way – if mars in your chart is at 6 degrees Sag and your Venus is 26 Virgo the middle between the two is 1 Scorpio. Does that make sense? It is a simple mathematical calculation really. (there will be a further midpoint and a closer one, the closer is the most commonly used including to cast composite charts – another fascinating use of midpoints!)

In the astro.com website they say: ‘A midpoint marks the focal point at which the energies of two planets meet. If a third planet is conjunct this point it receives these energies and to a certain degree acts as a channel for them.’

Exactly!

It is very interesting, if you have a planet in the midpoint of two planets in an opposition (that would be a T square) or in between two planets forming a square, it could act not only as a ‘channel’ but also it could reflect a possible way out from the dichotomy and towards more inner integration.

I love how we can potentially discover new things as we continue our astrological learning journey, including discovering new placements and things about our own astrology chart that we did not notice before.

I have written about my currently progressed Venus forming a conjunction to natal Saturn and roughly how serious I have been feeling regarding love relationships and personal boundaries – well, as I researched the midpoints in my chart I realised that Saturn sits right in the midpoint of my natal square between Neptune and Venus!

How interesting! To me this placement is somehow quite hopeful. The more I work on my Saturn in order to integrate it further in my psyche, the more I can potentially become more solid and realistic in how I deal with others… I feel that my natal Saturn holds a potential key for practicing boundaries and realism when my Venus-Neptune combo gets too dreamy.

Has any of you found an important planet in between a natal square like this? Do you feel that that planet can help you out with the conundrum?