Solar Eclipse in Gemini

Play Shadow by Leonora Carrington

“I hazard the explanation that a shock is at once in my case followed by the desire to explain it. I feel that I have had a blow; but it is not, as I thought as a child, simply a blow from an enemy hidden behind the cotton wool of daily life; it is or will become a revelation of some order; it is a token of some real thing behind appearances; and I make it real by putting it into words. It is only by putting it into words that I make it whole; this wholeness means that it has lost its power to hurt me; it gives me, perhaps by doing so I take away the pain, a great delight to put the severed parts together. Perhaps this is the strongest pleasure known to me. It is the rapture I get when in writing I seem to be discovering what belongs to what; making a scene come right; making a character come together. From this I reach what I might call a philosophy; at any rate it is a constant idea of mine; that behind the cotton wool is hidden a pattern; that we- I mean all human beings- are connected with this; that the whole world is a work of art; that we are parts of the work of art. Hamlet or a Beethoven quartet is the truth about this vast mass that we call the world. But there is no Shakespeare, there is no Beethoven; certainly and emphatically there is no God; we are the words; we are the music; we are the thing itself. And I see this when I have a shock.”

— Virginia Woolf from A Sketch of the Past (born with Mercury square Neptune and Jupiter)

Solar Eclipse in Gemini

Solar eclipses turn the golden Sun black and bring a liminal space of night into day, the kind of paradoxical puzzle that delights the nimble mindset of Gemini and its curiously ingenious ruler Mercury. The Gemini Solar Eclipse on June 10 is an annular eclipse, creating the visual effect of a “ring of fire” due to the Moon’s shadow only partially covering the face of the Sun and leaving a halo of fiery light surrounding the blackened Sun. Eclipses can bring pivotal endings and new beginnings within relationships and storylines, and this will be especially the case if you have important natal placements impacted by the eclipse taking place at 19°47′ Gemini. Yet due to Mercury being retrograde and applying closely to a conjunction with the eclipse at 20°41′ Gemini, Mercury will be in position to guide all of us into the fertile, black void of the eclipse in order to experience a deeply cathartic regeneration of perception.

Solar eclipses occur when a New Moon aligns at one of the intersections of the Moon’s orbit with the apparent path of the Sun from our earthbound perspective, known as the North and South Nodes of the Moon within astrology. Dane Rudhyar described the symbolism of the Moon casting a shadow that blackens the light of the Sun during a solar eclipse as signifying memories and unconscious patterns and perceptions overcoming our present awareness, creating greater potential for integrating and coming to terms with deep seated material normally kept out of mind. Since the Sun and Moon will be both on the side of the North Node of the Moon, there will be new visions arising out of the flood of feelings and memories unleashed by the eclipse that will catalyze new directions.

Mercury retrograde in Gemini is not only insisting on plunging into inner depths and soulful memories, but also questioning, investigating, connecting, distilling, and gathering a synthesis of insight from the subterranean material found there. Mercury stationed retrograde in Gemini on May 29 while forming a conjunction with Venus in Gemini; while both Mercury and Venus were visible as evening stars during sunset at the end of May, Venus in contrast to Mercury was at the very beginning of her evening star phase and therefore full of new desires for Mercury to sift through and integrate. By the beginning of June Mercury shifted into its invisible phase of guiding us into the underworld of unconscious material, shedding and releasing what needs to be let go of from the past as we come to terms with the new desires sparked by Venus.

While Mercury in Gemini may bring to mind images of galavanting go-betweens, it’s vital to bear in mind that Mercury is in the depths of its psychopomp phase of guiding awareness into inner caves of imaginal depth to encounter what has been lurking within the shadows of new desires, curiously exploring whatever new life force has been incubating within and yearning to emerge into manifestation. Mercury is sovereign and at home in the airy, inquisitive sign of Gemini lending increased capacity for Mercury’s retrograde movement to take us into the deepest recesses of inner life and dreams, turning over and examining each remnant retrieved from inner realms through multiple perspectives and reflections, weaving together new understanding without insisting on definitive conclusions. Mercury delights in the unexpected twist and turn that changes the way we have previously understood our story, and so the more we can surrender to the way Mercury is helping us rewrite our story the better we may be able to situate ourselves within the new chapter of our story that the Gemini Solar Eclipse is opening.

In contrast to Mercury ruling the North Node of the Moon from its airy home of Gemini, Jupiter is ruling the South Node of the Moon from its watery home of Pisces. The dark, waning Moon formed a square aspect with Jupiter on June 8 on its way to forming a conjunction with the North Node of the Moon on June 9, altogether giving Jupiter in Pisces a strong influence over whatever old material and memories are being released and reseeded into new narratives and visions of future potential by the eclipse. Jupiter in Pisces ruling the South Node of the Moon is a gift to be grateful for, as it can help us come to terms with whatever old fears and emotions are being dredged to the surface of awareness while simultaneously facilitating both a sinking into feelings as well as a re-emergence that may gather and cohere meaning that can be constructively and creatively brought into the reality of present circumstances. While past experiences and memories may inform our understanding of whatever is presently developing, the far reaching vision of Jupiter in Pisces will also illuminate how things are presently different and developing in new ways that are completely different from our past experiences.

Apártalos Que Voy De Paso by Remedios Varo

“I am only the container of the feeling of ecstasy, of the feeling of rapture.”

— Virginia Woolf, from A Sketch of the Past

The imaginal, unbounded and limitless realm of Neptune has an especially strong influence over the eclipse. The Solar Eclipse in Gemini is applying to a catalyzing square aspect with Neptune in Pisces, with Mercury retrograde in Gemini separating within three degrees from an exact square aspect with Neptune. Mercury retrograde formed an exact square aspect with Neptune on June 5 after previously having formed a square aspect with Neptune while direct on May 22. Following the Gemini Solar Eclipse, Mercury will gain a little more distance from Neptune but will never get further than about seven degrees from an exact square with Neptune. Mercury will return to form its third and final square aspect with Neptune in the sequence on July 6, creating an extended period of time during which to relate to the friction and inspiration being generated between Mercury with Neptune.

It has become common within astrology to hear people blame Neptune for causing illusions and misperceptions, which is interesting as in fact Neptune is often revealing the delusional mindframe people are already living within and perceiving their life from. In The Odyssey, an epic that pits the wily, complicated and mercurial hero Odysseus against Poseidon, the Greek precursor to the Roman Neptune, Zeus toward the beginning of the story remarks upon the absurdity of mortals blaming the gods: “They say we cause their suffering, but they themselves increase it by folly.” It’s possible that the square aspect between Mercury with Neptune has been revealing illusions you have held about circumstances or people in your life, but if this is the case the deeper meaning of the revelations can open awareness to the greater mystery of what has been occurring as well as to help reorient you to the truth of your reality so you may make more informed decisions and come to deeper understanding of whatever has been occurring. With Mercury presently within the deepest and darkest phase of its retrograde motion, there may be significant dreams, omens, synchronicities, and other living symbols occurring around you that will be able to help you further explore the meaning and understanding you have been gathering and engaging with.

While Neptune engaging with Mercury may have brought about disillusioning experiences, it’s also possible they have opened your heart and mind to inspiring visions and dreams to cultivate and nurture as well as expanded your sense of being interconnected in a meaningful way within the web of innumerable relationships within the world around you. While Neptune may have been dissolving whatever has been in the way of opening to the new potential ready to emerge, the retrograde motion of Mercury has been digging into the shadows cast by the brightness of new dreams, rooting out whatever old hangups and thought circles are ready to be shed so that we may more fully be present with the ways our life and direction are radically being reshaped. There is a balance to be struck by accepting and not negating the inspiration opened by Neptune while also allowing Mercury to mediate the interweaving forces of eros and necessity so that we may come to terms with what needs to be attended to in our daily reality. In this way Mercury and Neptune can help in guiding us toward the adjustments needed to be made so that the exciting visions of future potential will be able to be more securely developed.

Eclipses come in families known as the Saros cycle, and so it is further fascinating that the eclipse family that the Gemini Solar Eclipse belongs to is strongly connected with Neptune. The origin of the Saros cycle ancestry begins at either the south or north pole and then traces a serpentine path around our world every eighteen or so years, moving ahead eleven degrees of celestial longitude each time. Thus the Gemini Solar Eclipse on June 10, 2021 is part of the Saros 147 eclipse family that has its origin in an eclipse on October 12, 1624. Fascinatingly, the Libra Solar Eclipse that originated the series in 1624 was forming a conjunction with Neptune within a degree. Bernadette Brady in her book Predictive Astrology: The Eagle and the Lark wrote that it is an “unusual Saros series involving sudden flashes of ideas that seem to have a psychic or unconscious flavor,” and that it is a “truly creative series which should leave the individual enriched,” able to draw from hunches, visions, and prophetic dreams.

Keeping in mind that when Mercury stationed retrograde on May 29 it was forming a conjunction with Venus in Gemini, it is further significant that the asteroid Juno is retrograde in Sagittarius near the South Node of the Moon during the Gemini Solar Eclipse. Juno has been moving retrograde along with the South Node of the Moon and will be continuing to get closer to the South Node until eventually forming a conjunction with it in the beginning of July. Furthermore, just like Mercury is presently engaging in a square aspect with Neptune, so did Juno previously in recent months as Juno formed a square with Neptune on March 4 while direct followed by a second square with Neptune on May 5 while retrograde. Juno retrograde on the South Node side of the eclipse signifies the importance of old relational patterns and commitments resurfacing for reflection and release, as we renegotiate present commitments as well as form new ones.

Moreover, Vesta in Virgo is moving direct into an exact square aspect with Juno in Sagittarius during the eclipse, as well as moving toward a square aspect with Mercury retrograde in Gemini that will become exact on June 16. Vesta in Virgo is furthermore heading toward an opposition with Neptune in Pisces it will complete on July 2, drawing to a close a series of oppositions that Vesta has been forming with Neptune that previously occurred on December 20, 2020 and February 9, 2021. Whereas Juno has been bringing awareness to our needs within our relationships and who and what we wish to commit to, Vesta has been drawing attention to our own inner needs so that we may create relational dynamics with others that are mutually empowering and interdependent. Vesta will remove herself from external involvement when necessary to replenish and restore her sense of centeredness, which ultimately will also help in creating the kind of relational dynamics we desire. While both Vesta and Neptune can inspire devotion, one of the main differences is that the dissolving and disintegrating impact of Neptune can wash away our sense of egoic control and increase yearning for merging with sources of idealism. In contrast, Vesta will facilitate being in devotional service and relationship while maintaining connection with the sacred flame within so that we do not lose ourselves in external sources of ideals or become too decentered. You may notice that you began going through disillusioning experiences related to the tension between Vesta and Neptune at the end of 2020 that you now are beginning to more deeply reconcile and integrate so you can make constructive use of the insight you have gained.

While Venus re-emerging into visibility in the past month while forming a square aspect with Neptune and a conjunction with Mercury may have made us aware of important new desires and feelings within relationship, the presence of Juno retrograde in Sagittarius and Vesta in Virgo reveals the necessity of sifting through old relational patterns and perceptions to bring to the surface unconscious feelings and blockages that could otherwise inhibit our capacity for healing old relational patterns and forming healthier relationships with others. With Mercury retrograde on the side of the North Node and applying toward a regenerative conjunction with the Sun, we have the opportunity to lay to rest old fears and patterns from past relationships so we may better orient to the actual dynamics developing in present relationships. Juno in Sagittarius can also help us realize what we are ready to release regarding commitments from the past as well as become more deeply aware of who and what we wish to commit to going forward and the reasons why. Vesta in Virgo can help in tending to our inner needs so we may engage with our work and relationships from a more centered and restored sense of self that is in touch with our own needs and capable of communicating them to others.

Photograph by Laurel Ilvonen

Mercury in Gemini will enter the sacred heart of the Sun on June 10 at 20°21’ Gemini, later on the same day as the Gemini Solar Eclipse. A moment of epiphany for Mercury within the cavernous depths of Mystery, the solar conjunction of Mercury is both an ending and beginning, a rebirth moment for Mercury that deserves time set aside for contemplation and consideration as Mercury will be revitalized with the creative potency of our solar light. During its solar re-seeding, Mercury becomes purified and regenerated, yet this time around it will be doing so less than a day after the Sun has been eclipsed by the Moon. During this time of otherworldly light, when the Sun is in the midst of recovering from being veiled in shadow, we will be able to draw from the potent capacity of Mercury in Gemini for dissolving, blending, and mediating polarities and paradoxical tensions between opposites. There will be extraordinary potential available for receiving deep insight into the underlying, unconscious patterns at work in our life at the same time we will need to surrender to the changes to storylines brought in correspondence with the Gemini Solar Eclipse.

Unfortunately, popular astrology often mischaracterizes Gemini as having dilettante tendencies that keep it on the surface level of meaning, when in actuality Gemini has extraordinary capacity for poring underneath surface relationships for a depth of understanding that can find connection between disparate parts that would otherwise be overlooked. Mercury retrograde in Gemini can go especially deep through research, reading, reflection, writing, and when in dialogue and conversation with others, and so we can utilize its skills for flexibly weaving strands of meaning and connection together as we adjust to the changes that come with the Gemini Solar Eclipse. Mercury retrograde in Gemini can hold multiple ideas and issues at once, allowing a process of discovery to sort itself out rather than insisting on finding definitive answers or pretending it’s even possible to know for sure. As Mercury retrograde in Gemini separates from its conjunction with the Sun and begins to slow down and then station direct on June 22, be curious about asking questions, continuing to explore potential answers, and being willing to look at issues and experiences from multiple perspectives and viewpoints.

The strength of Mercury in Gemini for being flexible, listening and communicating with a depth of presence will be needed as we deal with the other major influence occurring with the Gemini Solar Eclipse: the friction between Saturn in Aquarius with Uranus in Taurus. The second exact square between Saturn with Uranus will occur on June 14 at 13°06’ Aquarius and Taurus, with Saturn retrograde and Uranus direct. The propulsive force of change brought forth between their dynamic is not new, as we already experienced an exact square between Saturn and Uranus on February 17, 2021 and we will continue to be heavily influenced by them for the rest of the year, as there will be one more final exact square between Saturn and Uranus that will take place on December 23, 2021 at 11°05’ Aquarius and Taurus. However, there likely has already been significant change occurring as we approach their second exact square or at the very least a buildup of tension that is ready to be released through dynamics shifting and changing. The square between Saturn and Uranus is the dominant astrological theme of 2021 and is at the root of all the dramatic changes taking shape on personal and collective levels.

Although Mercury retrograde in Gemini will not go far enough backwards through Gemini to form an exact trine aspect with Saturn, Mercury will end up being about three degrees away from an exact trine with Saturn when it stations direct on June 22. As a result, the ability of Mercury retrograde in Gemini to dig into the roots of present dynamics will be especially helpful in terms of working with the longterm scale of planning that pleases Saturn. While Uranus in Taurus is electrifying dynamics and causing the boundaries of Saturn to loosen so that new shapes and forms that are authentically exciting and passionate can come into being, the influence of Saturn retrograde in Aquarius requires us to be patient while slowly and steadily building and cultivating things so that we develop new structures, forms, and relationships that will last and stand up resiliently to external stress and pressures.

Mercury retrograde in Gemini can be helpful for mediating any disruption emanating from the dramatic changes occurring in correspondence with the clash between Saturn and Uranus. Saturn and Uranus in hard aspect can completely overturn our lives so that it seems as if everything has suddenly changed in ways that can feel extremely disruptive to the ways we have previously formed our security and identity around the attachments that we must release as part of moving with the changes. We can become at risk of dissociating or splitting off our awakened potential rather than finding ways to begin integrating it into our life. Mercury in Gemini can help us ground within the volatility of letting go of old forms of stability as we embrace the more expansive sense of wholeness emerging for us. As our perceptions about our future direction as well as our past that led to the present undergo radical shifting, Mercury in Gemini can be a great aid in holding multiple perceptions and experiences while allowing for whatever wants and needs to be born from the process at work.

Chariot of Ceres (ca. 1509) by Pinturicchio

There is another integral figure to recognize and relate with regarding the square aspect between Saturn and Uranus: Ceres in Taurus. Ceres in her chariot pulled by double dragons is forming a conjunction with Uranus at 12’55 Taurus on June 10, the same day as the solar eclipse and inferior conjunction of Mercury. There are multivalent potential meanings for Ceres being present with Uranus during the eclipse on both personal and collective levels, for example there could be significant mobilizations and activations with labor and agricultural movements within current events. However, with Mercury retrograde in the underworld and the light of the Sun becoming blackened by shadow, the union of Ceres with Uranus has clear resonance with the kind of revelatory insight gained by ancient cultures through undergoing the mystery initiations that were said to have been brought by Demeter, the Greek counterpart to the Roman Ceres. If old grief, trauma, wounds, or difficult emotions surface in the wake of the eclipse, the presence of Uranus with Ceres suggests the potential for a liberating jolt to occur that dislodges us from being stuck in old narratives with insight gained in how to begin relating in new ways with the old memories.

Demetra George has also spoken about Ceres being connected with attachment styles and issues of attachment related to one’s childhood, and so experiences within relationship may also lead to significant insight regarding how to heal old issues at the root of ways we have felt blocked from opening to deeper intimacy with others. Fortunately, Venus in Cancer is applying to a harmonious sextile aspect with Ceres that she will complete on June 13 as well as a sextile with Uranus she will complete the day before on June 12. With Venus receiving both Ceres and Uranus through a harmonious aspect within the watery sign of Cancer, there will be increased opportunities and potential to integrate and embody significant growth out of all of the emotional material that may be stirred up. As Ceres is also a signifier for the abundance and harvest that come from natural cycles in addition to the necessity of passing through periods of decomposition and regenerative death, we may gather a deeper sense of what needs to be released from our past into a process of putrefaction in order to receive and integrate the emerging new presence sparked by Uranus that is full of creative life force and passion.

9 of Swords by Pamela Colman Smith

Gemini 2 Decan

The Solar Eclipse will blacken the light of the Sun in the second decan of Gemini associated with the Nine of Swords card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. The Nine of Swords image of nightmarish worry and anguish under a cover of astrological symbols takes on new meaning when considering that Austin Coppock in his book on the decans 36 Faces ascribed the image of “The Hermaphrodite” to this face. Coppock described the second face of Gemini as being a place of mediating “continuing duality” in which “we must learn to reconcile angels and demons within a single soul.” The obsessive, negative thought cycles shown in the Nine of Swords through this lens reveals an “inability to reconcile dualities within oneself, within the world,” to Coppock, “the moments of despair” which can occur within the “irreconcilable places” found within this decan. Yet to Coppock there is a great gift to cultivate in the second face of Gemini in terms of recognizing how each side of dualities like love and war perpetually turn back into one another through the “arts of union and separation.” Coppock concluded that whoever “accepts these oscillations comes to understand the whole of interaction- they are unbothered by either, knowing the other waits in turn.”

Fittingly for a hermaphroditic decan, the second face of Gemini is ruled by both Mars and Venus, and numerous ancient texts have ascribed images of dualistic forms. The Hellenistic text 36 Airs attributed the ancient goddess Cybele to this face, whose creation story involves an original hermaphroditic form. The Liber Hermetis described a double faced man holding a bow and arrows, treading on rabbits with both feet. Ibn Ezra in The Beginning of Wisdom described another man holding a bow and arrow, but one whose head is bound in lead with an iron helmet featuring a silk crown, who is enjoying “ridicule and mockery” while walking around a garden playing music and picking flowers. While the Picatrix described an eagle-faced man also with bow and arrows, iron helmet, and silk crown, the Yavanajataka described a graceful black woman in bright garments who delights in the arts, singing and storytelling and who is pleased to be holding a lyre.

The hermaphrodite is also a living image resonant with the new presence and meaning that Mercury in Gemini may gather and birth from the tension of opposites in the weeks ahead as it completes its retrograde movement, stations in stillness, and proceeds to generate forward momentum as a bright Morning Star heralding sunrise. It will not be a time for black and white thinking during the period following the eclipse, but rather embracing the grayness of being in between thought and expression, conscious and unconscious awareness, the daily responsibilities we must attend to and the limitless expanses of imagination we may soar to within a moment of respite. If you feel fooled by an unexpected turn of events, see how the perspective of Hermes who delights in the twist of storylines can help you recenter and gain a sense for the meaning to be found in the mishap. As we draw closer to the finale of the first half of 2021, make space for reflecting on the many things that have been changing and how you wish to deepen into the transfigurations already underway for you.

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References

Brady, Bernadette. (1998). Predictive Astrology: The Eagle and the Lark. Weiser Books.

Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans. Three Hands Press.

The Odyssey by Homer. (2018). Translated by Emily Wilson. Norton.

Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius

Ultimum Conjunction: Jupiter and the Royal Eagles of Projection (2019) by Marlene Seven Bremner

Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius

The usual silvery luminescence of the Moon turns blood red during a total lunar eclipse. The thrust of primal change, the disruption of existing stability, the awakening of what had been dormant that pours down from one can feel as extraordinary as glimpsing the Moon cloaked in rose. It can feel like the emptying of bloodletting that imbalances while rebalancing, as storylines surge with stunning developments, old forms and relationships leave our life as vital new forms and relationships take root. After the Moon’s glow transfigures into vermillion vibrancy only to have its red mask peeled back again, the wake of the eclipse may bring about a shedding of crucial elements of past patterns that allows for new stories to emerge.

While total lunar eclipses normally have a more powerful impact than the usual full moon, they tend to correspond with dramatic life changes when impacting important degrees in one’s natal chart. The Total Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius on May 26, 2021 will be at 5°25′ Sagittarius with the South Node of the Moon at 10°43′ Sagittarius, and so if you have important parts of your natal chart in the first ten degrees of the mutable signs you will be more likely to be experiencing life altering events. In some cases, eclipses can correspond with experiences that result in radical changes that take us in completely new directions as we must let go simultaneously of the way things have been. For others an eclipse may come and go without obvious external changes appearing, but even in these cases there is typically an important inner metamorphosis happening in correspondence.

During the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse the Sun will be on the side of the North Node of the Moon in Gemini, casting the shadow of Earth across the face of the Moon. Dane Rudhyar described lunar eclipses as facilitating the emergence of new presence in how we meet experiences due to the Moon being covered in shadow, since the Moon holds memories and material from our past as well as unconscious patterns we have replicating. With the Moon forming a conjunction with the South Node of the Moon in Sagittarius, while the Sun is joined by both Mercury and Venus on the side of the North Node of the Moon in Gemini, we may experience a confrontation with inner beliefs that have been dictating what we do and do not engage with or conceive as being possible. We may be drawn back into old stories or have fears of old storylines repeating in the new stories we are beginning. Yet the dissolving impact of the South Node of the Moon can facilitate an emptying and release of the thought forms and belief structures that are no longer serving us and in fact are getting in the way of embracing inner changes, embodying and expressing the new desires emerging from within.

Jupiter in Pisces not only rules the eclipse but is also forming a catalyzing square aspect with the syzygy, further facilitating a deepening into disassembling old beliefs in order to synthesize and weave together new meaning and vision. The eclipsed Moon will be separating from a square aspect with Jupiter in Pisces and applying toward a trine with Chiron in Aries and a sextile with Saturn in Aquarius, aspects which can foster growth and development within any chaotic changes happening. It’s especially important that Saturn in Aquarius stationed retrograde only a few days before the eclipse on May 22, giving extra prominence to the influence of Saturn and the lessons that Saturn has been demanding that we face and develop understanding from. With Jupiter at full strength in Pisces and Saturn making the weight of its gravity felt through the stillness of its stationing, pay attention to the inspiring new visions and desires being stirred up, devoting yourself and committing to putting in patient and steady work that will please Saturn. At the same time, if we wish to align with what Jupiter in Pisces has to offer we need to expand our vision of the potential we can bring into reality and embody in our life.

With the eclipse moving in between aspects between Jupiter in its home of Pisces and Saturn in its home of Aquarius, its tidal force will bring propulsive developments to the ways we have been changed and are continuing to change in correspondence with the grand conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn that rippled outward on the solstice at the end of 2020. In fact, the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse on May 26 as well as the Gemini Solar Eclipse on June 10 are the first eclipses to follow the Total Solar Eclipse in Sagittarius that occurred on December 14, 2020 only a week before the great conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn. It’s hard to properly conceptualize the enormity of the Jupiter Saturn conjunction arriving on the solstice while simultaneously ushering in a new elemental era of air conjunctions between them, and we are only at the beginning of recognizing how our collective structures and personal lives will be irrevocably transfigured in correspondence. Yet we may certainly say that the forthcoming eclipse season will bring about an acceleration of the elements that have been shifting, breaking down, reforming, and recombining into new mixtures full of vital potency.

Moreover, as the great conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn was applying to a square aspect with Uranus in Taurus, and since the waning square aspect between Saturn and Uranus that will be occurring three times in 2021 is the predominant astrological theme of the year, it’s further significant that the trajectory of the Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius on May 26 followed by the Solar Eclipse in Gemini on June 10 will be leading us into the second exact square aspect between Saturn and Uranus that will take place on June 14, 2021. While in the past month the liberating impulses of Uranus in Taurus were stoked by stimulation from Venus, Mercury, and the Sun, whatever far reaching visions and desires were awakened must now be brought into relationship with the reordering of Saturn in Aquarius. With Saturn stationing only a few days before the eclipse and Saturn in Aquarius forming major aspects with the eclipses in Sagittarius and Gemini, we can now begin the process of discovering how to tend to both our imaginal landscape as well as our physical reality so that we may slowly and surely build and modify, create and recreate whatever is needed for the new visions to be nurtured in their roots so that they may blossom into vibrant strength.

In the Night by Morris Graves

Waiting in the wings of the eclipse with a patient intensity ready to pierce through the underlying dynamics of events is perhaps the most important character in the eclipse story to come: Hermes. Just like Saturn is carrying extra intensity due to stationing a few days before the eclipse, so is Mercury as the star of Hermes will station retrograde a few days after the eclipse on May 29 at 24°43′ Gemini. Mercury not only carries important influence over events associated with the eclipses due to stationing, but also due to the fact that Mercury is ruling the North Node of the Moon and will be ruling the upcoming Solar Eclipse in Gemini on June 10. In fact, in between Mercury stationing retrograde on May 29 and the solar eclipse on June 10, Mercury will be descending into the underworld in its psychopomp role of releasing what needs to be shed from our past, bringing us into deeper relationship with the new interests and ideas incubating within our inner darkness. Amazingly, Mercury will be forming its inferior conjunction with the Sun, when it is reseeded with the creative potency of its forthcoming cycle, at the same time as the Gemini Solar Eclipse. The powerful role Mercury will be playing in the weeks to come will be important to remember, and so we will need to maintain a flexibility of consciousness that is curious about the unexpected, finds meaning in synchronicities and changes in plan, and is willing to shift and move with the twists and turns in storylines that will occur.

Yet Mercury will not be retrograde when the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse occurs, and instead will be twinkling with light in the liminal shifting of hues following sunset. Most importantly, Mercury will be joined in the sky by Venus who is getting brighter and brighter as an Evening Star each day. The applying conjunction between Venus with Mercury, the ruler of the North Node of the Moon, suggests being mindful of our relationships and the ways our relational needs are changing. It will be important to engage in communication within relationships, and the link between Venus and Mercury further suggests it may be a time of transition in relationships with certain ones passing away as new ones grow in strength. It can also be a fruitfully creative time for experimenting with writing, art, or any crafts where Venus and Mercury can combine. Since Venus is only at the beginning of her new Evening Star phase and we are still settling into what has been reborn in correspondence with her superior conjunction with the Sun at the end of March, the fact that Mercury is pausing to wait for her suggests he will receive an important message from her regarding our desires and creativity to carry with him during his upcoming retrograde journey through the underworld and back again.

Mercury and Venus previously formed a conjunction on April 25, 2021 in Taurus a few degrees away from Uranus and also closely in range of a square aspect with Saturn in Aquarius. Their next exact conjunction will be on May 28 at 24°41′ Gemini at the same time that Mercury is stationing retrograde, with both Venus and Mercury forming a catalyzing square aspect with Neptune in Pisces. Since they are uniting while also forming a square with Neptune in Pisces, on one level we can observe how Mercury and Venus have been weaving together storylines and setting off foreshadowing that links together the events connected with the square aspect between Saturn and Uranus with the conjunction between Jupiter and Neptune in Pisces that will be a pivotal influence during 2022. However, rather than being swept away by dreams of the future we will need to focus on how things are developing in the present, drawing inspiration from whatever exciting new visions are being stimulated by the tension between Neptune with Venus and Mercury.

Indeed, the square aspect between Mercury and Neptune will be unusually long and merits closer examination. Mercury first formed a square aspect with Neptune on May 22, moving within three degrees of a square with Neptune on May 18. Mercury will remain within three degrees of a square aspect with Neptune until June 11, meaning that it will be tightly forming a square with Neptune from now all the way through the upcoming Gemini Solar Eclipse. It will be a potent period for dreaming and exploring imaginal landscapes, surrendering to feelings and letting old blockages erode within the oceanic waves of Neptune. Yet at the same time, Mercury being strong in its own airy home will be capable of retrieving pivotal insight, curiously exploring and examining the shells washing up on the shoreline of our psyche. There will be added intensity to the square between Mercury and Neptune during the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse, as Venus will be amplifying their dynamic as she passes through an exact square aspect with Neptune on May 27 and a conjunction with Mercury on May 28.

In addition, another major underlying influence during the eclipse will be the opposition forming between Mars in Cancer with Pluto in Capricorn that will eventually become exact on June 5. Mars in Cancer will be forming a flowing trine aspect with Neptune that it will complete on May 30, while Neptune is also in range of a harmonious sextile aspect with Pluto. The opposition between Mars and Pluto can have multivalent meaning in many different contexts, ranging from an intensification of desire, enmeshment within difficult power dynamics, or a need to be resiliently empowered in the face of strong opposition among many other possible impacts. Due to Mars and Pluto also forming aspects with Neptune, it will be important to pay close attention to inner feelings and any way we may be projecting internal dynamics on others. At the same time, these same aspects could be bringing genuine ideals and visions of authentic actualization to develop within our relationships and work. Combined with everything else, it will be important to avoid negating the beautiful vision of what can potentially be developed while also making sure to remain grounded and tend to whatever needs care within relationships and what will need to be altered or modified within work and creative projects.

Temperance by Leonora Carrington

Although there are a lot of intense astrological aspects surrounding the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse, the fact that Jupiter in Pisces is ruling the eclipse brings greater potential for integration and being able to gather deeper meaning and inspiration from our experiences. Within the nocturnal water of Pisces, Jupiter can facilitate a sinking into deeper embodiment the more we let things slow down and take shape rather than trying to force things to happen or speed up events. Jupiter in Pisces can assist in seeing through and feeling into experiences, finding coherence through relating to what is happening within us as well as listening and relating within our external relationships. No matter what sort of volatile events erupt in the weeks ahead, see how you can draw on the combined strength of Jupiter in Pisces (ruling the South Node) and Mercury in Gemini (ruling the North Node) for blending, moderating, and measuring how you are internally impacted, finding outlets for circulating and moving the energy through you. As old beliefs and dreams are released into the eclipse portal aligned with the South Node of the Moon in Sagittarius, the presence of Jupiter in Pisces will be ready to spin new tales and construct new stories that will be more aligned with whatever new presence is emerging from within.

The XIV Temperance arcanum in tarot has been syncretized by many with the zodiac sign of Sagittarius. In their book on the tarot, Alejandro Jodorowsky and Marianne Costa wrote the following message spoken by Temperance:

“I’ve been called ‘guardian angel’; that is how the Church imagined me, with the appearance of a child. I am that, but I am also much more than that. I am a part of your subconscious, its benevolent part, the part that helps and keeps watch over you even when you are sleeping. I am there to urge you to act when an action is good for you. Trust me: I am here to balance you. Those who suffer and torture themselves do not know me, yet I am also there for them. I am only waiting for them to see me and to call upon me.

“I ask only one thing of you: that you recognize that you are not alone. But then you ask, what must be done to reach me? I shall answer you: you must begin by imagining me. You may first invoke my childish image of a guardian angel; that’s a good start. Play with me like a child speaking to his angel. Act as if I existed. Imagine me, there, right next to you, all the time, and that my sole purpose is to help you. Most importantly, like a trusting child, you must accept my aid.”

The Way of Tarot: The Spiritual Teacher in the Cards by Alejandro Jodorowsky and Marianne Costa
8 of Wands by Pamela Colman Smith

Sagittarius 1 Decan

The Moon will be eclipsed in the first decan of Sagittarius associated with the Eight of Wands card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. In the image we can see eight staffs or wands sailing swiftly across the sky and above a flowing river, evoking a focus on movement. Indeed, the Eight of Wands signifies a multiplicity of developments as well as the speed of thought applied to a passionate goal, which fits well with Mercury being the ruler of the first face of Sagittarius. Austin Coppock in his book on the decans 36 Faces described the chief meaning of this decan being “the speed of an idea or vision, the velocity of imagination,” writing that “the essence of this decan entails the swift emergence of a motivating vision and the attainment of a vehicle to move one toward the pictured goal.”

Austin Coppock ascribed the image of “The Poisoned Arrow” to the first decan of Sagittarius, describing the complex relationship between the speed of vision found within this face and the potential to have thought manipulated by external sources. In part Coppock related this concept to the attribution of daimons of plague by the Hellenistic text 36 Airs to this face, noting this decan also involves “the secrets of propaganda” and other viruses that can “infect the psyche” and hijack our bodies, emotions, and minds, like influential ideas and propaganda that goes viral on the Internet. Coppock further noted that the “energy patterning of this decan is linear and ruthless,” like an arrow shot with violent precision at a target. As a result, the first decan of Sagittarius teaches the importance of remembering that our mind, body, and emotions are vulnerable to infections from external sources. By protecting our psyche from external manipulation, Coppock further pointed out that we can instead become infected with “enthusiasm.” Indeed, also present within this face is “the ideal self, the half divine hero . . . composed entirely of spirit fire” from whom “a story unfolds – a quest, a target, a driven myth.”

With Jupiter in Pisces ruling the Sagittarius Lunar Eclipse, we can expect new myths and stories to emerge within our collective psyche. As Wole Soyinka wrote in his introduction to his interpretation of The Bacchae of Euripedes, “Myth is part wish-fulfillment through hero projections” as well as “an outline for action, especially for groups within society who have experienced loss and deprivation.” Regarding the figure of Dionysus who is deeply resonant with Jupiter and Neptune in Pisces, Soyinka wrote that the history of Dionysus “was extravagantly rich in all the ingredients of a ravaged social psyche: displacement, suppression of identity, dissociation, dispossession, trials and the goal of restoration.” Just like Soyinka pointed out how Dionysus as “deity of the moist elements” connected the masses with the rhythms of Nature as well as allowed for the release of “the pent-up frustrated energy of all the downtrodden,” so can we expect a regeneration of collective myths and stories to emerge giving voice to those who have been on the outskirts of consensus, central narrative viewpoints. Within your personal life, listen for the voice of your guardian daimon/angel and the enlivening quests and stories ready to emerge from a new chapter in your life. The illuminated intuition found within, vivified by inner spirit fire, may guide the way forward if we trust it.

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References

Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans. Three Hands Press.

Jodorowsky, Alejandro and Costa, Marianne. (2004). The Way of Tarot: The Spiritual Teacher in the Cards. Destiny Books.

Soyinka, Wole. (1973). The Bacchae of Euripedes: A Communion Rite. W.W. Norton & Company.

New Moon in Gemini

Door Portal

Image by Michelle Doucette (2020) whose work can be found at The Dreaming Canvas

New Moon in Gemini

The New Moon in Gemini on May 22, 2020 heralds a lunar cycle that will require the cunning skills of Mercury, the ability to consider many perspectives while navigating twists and turns in events and keeping an open mind regarding necessary changes in direction. Gemini delights in the discovery of new connections, new perspectives that weave deeper meaning between nodes of intersecting strands that appear dissimilar on the surface. The sublime flexibility of consciousness cultivated by those with potent Gemini signatures is often mischaracterized as superficiality within popular astrology, when in fact the Gemini capacity for holding the tension of opposing viewpoints is a strength sorely needed within the many conflicts between dogmatic ideologies raging across current events. The present quality of time demands a release of the way things have been, an emptying of ideals attached to the societal structures in process of collapse under the pressure brought by the pandemic. The New Moon in Gemini calls for awareness to be brought to the tools, resources, and networks of connection we can each utilize to question, research, and analyze how to realign and adjust to the new societal systems beginning to take shape.

Since the Gemini New Moon is separating from a trine aspect with Saturn in Aquarius and applying to a square aspect with Mars in Pisces, the discord and debate over next steps to take in response to the myriad societal issues stemming from the pandemic will continue to intensify. Mars in Pisces is also applying toward a sextile with Uranus in Taurus, amplifying the restlessness, impatience, and anger of those desiring to break free from the societal restrictions on movement and activity designed to protect public health. There is also an illusory shadow cast over the lunation by Neptune in Pisces, as the Gemini New Moon is applying toward a square aspect with Neptune and both Mercury and Venus in Gemini are engaged in a square aspect with Neptune. While the flood of conspiracy theories around the pandemic has distorted the perspective of many, the Gemini New Moon invites curiosity toward the coronavirus and devising how to responsibly follow the guidelines established by scientists and medical experts while reordering and reestablishing one’s relationship with commerce and means of making money.

The Gemini New Moon is in the home of Mercury and the bounds of Mercury, while Mercury is reinvigorated due to recently reemerging into its own light in its home of Gemini. While Mercury is moving fast and increasing in light as an Evening Star, Venus is moving slowly and preparing to descend from its Evening Star phase into the darkness of the underworld due to shifting into its retrograde phase last week.  Mercury and Venus are crossing paths in the night, with both visible together following sunset due to being out of bounds in northern declination. The out of bounds nature of Mercury combined with Venus retrograde can incite leaps of imagination that remain rooted in the necessity of pandemic precautions. However, in order to receive the wisdom that Venus and Mercury out of bounds have to offer we must take a divergent path from the way things have been and sustain a curious interest in how to rearrange personal structures around the new possibilities and options emerging from all of the immense change sweeping across societal structures.

Calypso and Oddysseus

Ulysses and Calypso (1882) by Arnold Bocklin

The New Moon in Gemini will initiate a lunar cycle that will take us through the darkest depths of Venus retrograde in Gemini,  a chthonic time of shedding and emptying that will bring about a reseeding of desires as the lunar cycle culminates with a catalytic Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius on June 5. Within a couple of days of the lunation on May 23 and 24, as the waxing Gemini Moon makes its first appearance in crescent light it will also form a conjunction with Venus and Mercury while simultaneously forming a square aspect with Neptune. Venus has been forming a square aspect with Neptune since the beginning of May, gathering imaginative impressions she has been able to share with Mercury during their union within the darkness of the New Moon. Many of the longings and yearnings stoked by the friction of Venus stationing in tension with Neptune may begin to dissolve and burn off during the forthcoming lunar cycle, yet the simultaneous contact from the Moon and Mercury can help gather the essential insights from the stirring of feelings that will shine light on the desires we will need to release versus the desires ready to be deepened and reanimated.

Venus will disappear into her invisible, underworld phase at the end of May, descending into darkness at the same time the Moon and Mercury are increasing in light. Mercury will leave its home of Gemini on May 28 to enter the lunar waters of Cancer; since this occurs around the same time that Venus is disappearing into darkness it will demarcate a notable shift in our experience of Venus retrograde. As a result, take advantage of the co-presence between Mercury and Venus in the sign of Gemini during the week following the New Moon to gain greater clarity for what will need to be purged and stripped away from Venus as she descends into the underworld. What old relationships or relational patterns have been reemerging in awareness that are ready to be burned up by the union of Venus with the Sun on June 3?

During the week following the New Moon there can also be potent creative experimentation and exploration while Mercury remains in Gemini and Venus continues to deepen into her retrograde depths. The powerful influence of Neptune upon Venus and Mercury during the Gemini New Moon is capable of causing distraction and becoming immersed in experiences and emotions that pull us away from the path we had determinedly set out to follow. Yet while many people complain about the illusory impact of Neptune, it nonetheless can bring about a surrendering to a vaster reality and awareness of the living realities denied by overly rational and materialistic world-views. It’s likely that there are vital resources and insights to be found within the dreams and imaginative flights of fantasy you have been experiencing recently that Mercury in Gemini can now craft into a magical tool that will prove to be essential in the next chapter of your story.

TheWheelofFortune

Wheel of Fortune by Leslie Daniels

The impact of Mercury ruling the Gemini New Moon is further increased due to Mercury also applying toward a conjunction with the transiting North Node of the Moon. There are two calculation for the lunar nodes used in astrology, one being the “true” calculation based upon scientific tracking of the exact nodal positions, the other more traditional one being the “mean” calculation based upon the average mean motion of the lunar nodes across time. The true calculation of the North Node of the Moon entered Gemini on May 5, while the mean calculation of the North Node will not enter Gemini until June 4. Mercury will form a conjunction with the true calculation of the North Node of the Moon in Gemini on May 27, while Mercury will form a conjunction with the mean calculation of the North Node in Cancer on May 28. It’s safe to say in either case that the Gemini New Moon is initiating us fully into the transition from the lunar nodes being in the cardinal signs of Cancer and Capricorn into inhabiting the mutable signs of Gemini and Sagittarius.

Our initiation into the North Node of the Moon transiting through Gemini will be further felt at the end of May once the Gemini Sun crosses the threshold of “eclipse season” in which it moves within nineteen degrees of the transiting lunar nodes. As a result, we will experience our first eclipse in Gemini and Sagittarius on June 5 when the Sagittarius Moon will wax into fullness and be partially eclipsed. It will be helpful to make space to reflect upon the houses in your natal chart occupied by the signs of Gemini and Sagittarius to begin to get a sense of the life topics that will be altered by their shadowy effects. The house where you have Gemini will be experiencing an increase of growth and ambitious desires that will need to be tempered at times to not become overly excessive, while the house where you have Sagittarius will be experiencing a process of release, drainage, purification, detoxification, harvesting, and reseeding.

Ever since Mars formed a conjunction with the South Node of the Moon in Capricorn on February 25, all of the planets and the Sun have been transiting in between the space demarcated between the transiting South Node and North Node of the Moon. This same period of time has also coincided with governments around the world needing to shutdown economies and institute social distancing measures to protect public health from the pandemic. Mercury finally moving across the North Node and ending the nodal containment of the planets does not signify the end of needing to take precaution against the pandemic, but it is not surprising that as the planet of commerce is the first one to break free that governments would begin implementing strategies for how to safely begin opening economies in phases.

Due to moving fast and increasing in light as it encounters the North Node of the Moon, Mercury is primed to deliver key insight and realization toward whatever processes of growth and development we are engaged with. As the vivification of Mercury will be occurring at the same time that Venus is descending into the darkness of the underworld, however, the chthonic influence of Venus will necessitate that growth will involve processes of release, emptying, and shedding to make space for whatever new sources of desire are ready to enter into our life. Fortunately, Mercury is the planet most attuned to mediating the polarities of light and darkness, spirit and matter, and the internal with the external. There may be paradoxical feelings of needing to bury and release the past at the same time new inspirations begin calling to us from beyond the horizon.

New Moon in Gemini

Insula dulcamara (1938) by Paul Klee

Mars in Pisces is not only making an intense impact on the Gemini New Moon, it will continue to become an increasingly important influence over events during the waxing half of the forthcoming lunar cycle. As the Moon waxes toward fullness, Mars will move closer and closer toward forming a square aspect with Venus retrograde which it will complete on June 2, one day before Venus is regenerated in the heart of the Sun on June 3. With Mars applying heat in the exaltation of Venus, there will be an accumulation of tension forged between Mars and Venus that will incite potent passions and will culminate at the same time that Venus is experiencing a death and rebirth process with the Sun. There may be conflict to mediate, but if we can hold the tension of the friction between Venus and Mars it will bring greater clarity toward the authentic desires that will help guide our path forward during the second half of the Venus retrograde period in June.

At the same time that Mars is forming catalyzing aspects with the Sun and Venus retrograde, it will also be approaching a conjunction with Neptune that it will not complete until June 13 during the waning half of the lunar cycle. Mars in Pisces is in the home of Jupiter transiting in its fall of Capricorn, while Jupiter is retrograde and applying toward its second conjunction with Pluto retrograde. While many feel desperate to resume economic activity and institutional powers likewise have an invested interest in manipulating public opinion toward returning to economic activity, it will be important to make wise and cautious decisions over what levels of risk we are exposing and exacerbating by a lessening of social distancing in favor of increased economic activity. The great cycles of astrology dictate there will be a continued need to take protective measures against the pandemic and so it will be essential to balance the reactivation of economic activity with being accountable to measures for protecting public health at the same time.

While Mars in Pisces heading towards Neptune can be carried off by the illusion of dogmatic ideals, its imaginal power combined with the underworld depths of Venus retrograde can also expose the ideals we need to burn off in the fiery Sun. The ideals of culture can have an unconscious effect, as the ideals of the time we live in often surround us with hypnotic effect due to their constant presence in all forms of media we interact with on a daily basis. The Gemini New Moon is an opportune time to notice how you have been conditioned by the ideals of others, and allow yourself to open yourself to the illumination that can be received by stripping away your ideals to discover what will survive the underworld journey of Venus at the end of May and beginning of June.

swords08

8 of Swords by Pamela Colman Smith

Gemini 1 Decan

The New Moon falls in the first face of Gemini associated with the Eight of Swords card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. The image is apt for the fears and grief that have been overwhelming to many during the pandemic. Many have interpreted the image of the frozen and tightly bound woman as the kind of paralysis that comes from fears running rampant within or from the triggering of past trauma in present circumstances.  While some interpretations suggest that the same mental swords enveloping the figure could also be used to cut away the fabric of bondage, it is also important to note the moist and muddy fertility of the ground she is standing on. As Jupiter rules the first face of Gemini, the image also reveals how fear can arise in times when a huge new potential becomes available to step into.  As much as it is possible to release fears related to what has happened in the past that are being projected into the present moment, the more gracefully we will be able to flow into the tremendous change opening up at the beginning of this lunar cycle.

Austin Coppock in his book on the decans 36 Faces ascribed the image of “The Apple of Eden” to the first face of Gemini, linking Eve’s bite into the apple with emerging awareness of “the duality within all things” including the yin and yang of the self. Coppock described that the discovery of the binary and “the multiplicity within all unities, the complexity in apparent simplicities” unlocks “the capacity to code all things” and display clever skills in all of the arts and sciences. Yet in keeping with the image of the Eight of Swords card, Coppock also declared that this opening to abundant flow also “de-centers and sometimes paralyzes its inhabitants.” Coppock noted that the mental acuity of this decan not only generates all arts and crafts, it also directs its prodigious curiosity to explore multitudinous found within, both the light and the shadow of the deep Self.

In contrast to the tightly bound woman in the Eight of Swords image, ancient texts ascribed a graceful woman of flowing mind and deft dexterity.  Ibn Ezra pictured “A beautiful woman standing in the air, and she can sew,” while in the Picatrix we find “A beautiful woman, a mistress of stitching, and with her ascend two calves and two horses.” Indeed, the Picatrix declares it to be “a face of the art of the scribe, of reckoning, of number, of giving and receiving, and of the sciences.”

Fascinatingly, the Hellenistic text the 36 Airs ascribed Tethus, also known as Tethys,  to the first face of Gemini. Since Tethys is the Titan goddess of fresh water which interconnects and nourishes our earth, we can note her appearance in the Eight of Swords image as the water at the foundation of the figure. Tethys was also the wife of Okeanos, the primal sea divinity of the oceanic field surrounding the world where the Sun rises from at dawn and returns to at sunset, and the mother of river, cloud, spring, stream, and fountain spirits. Daughter of Gaia, Tethys fed her children through the subterranean waters of Okeanos as her name is derived from the Greek word têthê meaning “nurse” or “grandmother.” Moreover, she was often depicted in art with a pair of wings on her brow signifying her role as mother of rain clouds (2). While there may be a need for grief and the release of tearful emotions like rain from clouds in the forthcoming lunar cycle, allow exploration of your watery internal landscape to be a nurse and fount of enlivening water for what wants to be born through your life and engagement in giving and receiving.

References

(1) Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans. Three Hands Press.

(2) Tethys, Greek Titan Goddess of Fresh Water. https://www.theoi.com/Titan/TitanisTethys.html

Cancer Solstice 2015

Munch the sun

The Sun by Edvard Munch

Solstice Changes

The Solstice marks the change of the season, with the Sun’s entrance into the sign of Cancer on June 21, 2015 initiating Summer in the Northern Hemisphere and Winter in the Southern Hemisphere.  We can also interpret the chart drawn for this solstice moment of the Sun entering Cancer and glean messages for the coming season and year ahead.  There is an intriguing link between the chart of this solstice and our last solstice that occurred on December 21, 2014 in the form of Saturn, as at that previous solstice Saturn was at 29°49′ of Scorpio and preparing to enter the sign of Sagittarius, and at this solstice Saturn is retrograde at 29°35′ of Scorpio having recently left the sign of Sagittarius.  In fact, Saturn’s time in Scorpio marks this next season, as when we reach the upcoming Libra Equinox in September, Saturn will have freshly returned to Sagittarius.

The Moon of this Cancer Solstice reflects the solar light of the Sun in the form of a waxing Crescent Moon in the sign of Leo.  The Leo Crescent Moon further points to the significance of Saturn as it is separating from a square to Saturn at the time of the solstice.  This gives the solstice a more serious tone and signifies heavy thoughts necessary for our consciousness to confront and process.  As Dane Rudhyar taught, at the Crescent Moon we must fight off the ghosts of our past and resist the regressive pull of the past, instead focusing on the vulnerable new sense of growth we are experiencing yet fear we do not have enough resources in our environment to support.  The lesson of the Crescent Moon is to be present in our path and cognizant of whatever resources we do have around us and make choices to utilize the support available to us. Since the Crescent Moon of this Solstice is at the final degree of Leo, separating from a square to Saturn retrograde in Scorpio, working with the full spectrum of challenges in our environment without denial and with resolve to creatively find a solution will be most helpful.

Amplifying the need to embody strength that recognizes our vulnerability is Chiron stationing retrograde on June 24, 2015 at 21°33′ Pisces.  With Chiron beginning to station at the solstice it casts increased influence, even more so considering that Chiron is stationing opposite Black Moon Lilith in Virgo.  The opposition between Chiron and Black Moon Lilith calls us to examine the rejected, oppressed, alienated, ostracized, or wounded in the greater collective as well as within our Self.  Remember Chiron was rejected by his own parents and found healing and substance through taking in other abandoned youth and training them to develop and manifest their heroic capacities.  As each day brings another global event highlighting racism, sexism, homophobia, and other forms of institutionalized oppression, within the crescendo of these traumatic events there is a movement growing stronger each day to refuse silence and become vocal witnesses to the tragedies surrounding us.  Chiron stationing opposite Black Moon Lilith brings a transmutation of the inequality, discrimination, and persecution individuals experience in our society into a cathartic release of pain, anger, and emotion.  This does not mean racism will end or everything will become instantly healed, but it does mean greater focus will be shone on both the roots and effects of this wounding, and as a result of increased awareness there can be a shifting of new movement toward greater understanding despite a lack of change and insistence on obstinacy in many.

Sun Solstice

Illustrated by Pamela Colman Smith

Yet this solstice is not all about heaviness, as there are also numerous optimistic, expansive, and visionary aspects happening.  The heart of this dynamic energy centers around Venus in Leo applying to a conjunction with Jupiter in Leo, both also applying to a trine with Uranus in Aries.  The day before the solstice on June 20 is especially auspicious along these lines, as the Moon will be in Leo and moving across conjunctions with Venus and Jupiter and through a trine with Uranus before coming into the square with Saturn at the time of the solstice.  The trine between Jupiter and Uranus is almost exact at the solstice, and in fact will be exact the very next day on June 22, 2015.  This brings extraordinary promise to the chart of this solstice and indicates we will have the ability to invent dynamic solutions to our present dilemmas in the coming season that can liberate us from our present predicaments.  This also can be a season for collaborating with others of like mind or shared passion, and developing relationships with people on a similar path to our own who can be a source of inspiration and support to us on our journey.

The sheer beauty and brilliance of Venus and Jupiter at night is something to relish and savor in the weeks ahead.  It is easy to see why Venus and Jupiter were labeled as our benefic planets in ancient astrology when we experience their white light these nights, and each day from the solstice they will get closer and closer to one another in the night sky until they climax around June 30 to July 1, 2015 at 21-22° Leo.  The alignment of Venus with Jupiter at this solstice lends us rays of promising hope no matter how challenging our current circumstances.  It is fitting they are uniting in the sign of the Sun, as at the Cancer Solstice we celebrate the return of the Sun in the Southern Hemisphere and the peak of the Sun in the Northern Hemisphere.  Look to see what aspects Venus and Jupiter are making in your chart and what house they are passing through.  Whatever house they are passing through can help you realize how to make best use of the gift they are offering.  So many of us hold ourselves back from our power and our own beauty- if you have been acting this way Venus and Jupiter now want you to release yourself into an experience of your radiant Self.

sower-with-setting-sun- Summer Solstice

Sower with Setting Sun (1888) Vincent Van Gogh

Venus in Leo holds another message for us in the chart of the Cancer Solstice with a far reaching impact, as Venus has entered its retrograde shadow zone at the time of the solstice.  Venus will station at zero degrees of Virgo on July 25, 2015 and then will eventually station direct on September 6, 2015 at the exact same place Venus is located at the time of this Cancer Solstice.  I’m not sure if Venus needed her upcoming retrograde to be even more higher status than normal, but in my book the amazing alignment of this Cancer Solstice chart with the eventual stationing of Venus at the end of her retrograde is a profound sign of the deep rooted changes that will coincide with the upcoming Venus retrograde.  Now is a good time to begin looking at your chart and noticing the house Venus will be passing through retrograde and aspects made during her journey into the underworld and back again.

Speaking of being in the underworld, Mars is still only a couple degrees away from the Sun at the time of the solstice.  As a result, another important message held by this Cancer Solstice is the new cycle between the Sun and Mars, and the implication of their new cycle beginning in the sign of Gemini.  It seems the new Mars cycle will be about sharing and communicating new ideas, with the mutable energy of adaption and being flexible enough to shift in response to new perspectives.  Whatever new sense of Mars we are coming into now, we are at an early manifestation of it that could feel difficult to fully embody this soon in the evolving process.  Using the old astrological theory that a planet is under the beams of the Sun up until fifteen degrees away, Mars will re-emerge with a message from this process around August 4, 2015 when it will be at the end of Cancer in trine to a Saturn in Scorpio that will have recently stationed direct.  At the very end of August on August 31, we will have another conjunction between Mars and Venus, this time with Venus retrograde, around fifteen degrees of Leo.  Thus it seems there is a huge transformative process involving Mars underway at this solstice.

The final aspect of this Cancer Solstice chart I want to highlight is one of the most significant:  Mercury in Gemini square to Neptune in Pisces.  This is the third and final square between Mercury and Neptune in this cycle, with the first occurring on May 9, 2015 with Mercury direct and the second occurring on May 28, 2015 with Mercury retrograde.  At the third pass we have greater understanding what this square has meant for us, well about as much certainty as is possible with an intense aspect between Mercury and Neptune.  The square will become exact on June 23, 2015 but is applying closely at the time of the solstice making it one of the most potent aspects of the solstice chart.  With Mercury and Neptune in the mix there are multitudes of possible ways this could impact you, from upwelling of artistic inspiration to deflation associated with disillusionment or an unveiling of dishonesty.  When we consider the significance of the new Sun and Mars cycle occurring in Gemini, and that later in this year there will be incredible mutable energy with Jupiter in Virgo, the lunar nodes in Pisces and Virgo, and Saturn in Sagittarius, it seems this square between Mercury and Neptune is a vital re-alignment of the manner in which we are discerning meaning in our lives.  Allow your mind to take it all in without over-rationalizing or restricting your thought process:  as legends suggest, there is magic afoot at this Cancer Solstice and Mercury is in position to help us perceive a key insight to carry forward in the season ahead.

Cancer Solstice Summer 2015