Sunday, September 11, 2016

Follow the Moon: Forecast for September 12, 2016 – September 25

I can’t stop watching the videos and reading the posts from the Sacred Stone Camp. This is the effort by the Standing Rock Lakota in North Dakota to protect their water and culturally significant sites from the Dakota Access Pipeline. (Find our more here .) Even though I live a 7-hour drive away from the camp, I feel connected to this struggle as I watch live streaming of warriors chaining themselves to bulldozers, women singing to water, tribes from all over the world arriving ceremoniously to cheers and tears, canoes from the great nations of the Pacific Northwest being launched into the Missouri River, and so many beautiful faces and voices speaking on behalf of water and the Earth. We can be connected, even though, incredibly, mainstream media has been slow to cover this event. I am cherishing this connection. Modern tools give access, but Water is the connector. The water protectors of Standing Rock say, “Water is life (mni wiconi).” They are acting on behalf of everyone who needs water, which is all of us.

It doesn’t feel like a coincidence that this upwelling of devotion, service, and action takes off like a stampede during the Virgo lunar cycle. This season invites us to usefulness. It isn’t enough to value the water, we must become protectors, devotees of water too. Virgo helps us realize that devotion sustains action. Virgo is the mutable earth sign. Mutability and multiplicity go hand in hand. There isn’t just one way to be in service to the sacred. There are many ways—from prayers to chains to canoes trips—the Virgo season encourages us to get busy.

At the beginning of this lunar cycle, I wrote* about the reasons this lunar cycle feels more potent and represents an opportunity to make huge shifts. One of these influences is that we are in an eclipse cycle right now. The New Moon on September 1 was a Solar Eclipse along the North Node in Virgo. The Full Moon on September 16 will be a lunar eclipse conjoining the South Node in Pisces. The Nodes of the Moon represent processes of destruction and rebirth. Imagine the nodes as a dragon, as Vedic astrologers still do. The North Node head of the dragon is a place to acquire new energy. The South Node is the tail, surrendering and transforming what must pass. Like dragons, we are hungry for Virgo devotion. And we pass along to the great cosmic compost pile, our old experiences of Pisces. Pisces as a water sign holds memories. As mutable water, these memories create meaning. Perhaps what we are releasing are old memories, the stories that have fueled the traumas of our world. An eclipse is an opening to new insights. The old light fades. Darkness washes us. A new light comes.

Mercury continues to move retrograde through Virgo, encouraging us to stay open to the unexpected. We don’t need to know where the path is leading if we let devotion to life be the purpose. The heart of this retrograde happens when Mercury conjoins the Sun on September 12. Mars in Sagittarius makes a square to the Sun and Mercury at the same time. Chiron in Pisces opposes Mercury/Sun forming a t-square aspect pattern for the week. Whenever Mars is involved, the opening to anger or violence is there. However, other possibilities exist. Try this on: With Chiron in Pisces, we open to devotion to water and the vulnerability of that devotion. With Mercury and the Sun in Virgo, we seek to serve and heal, and through Mars we act as protectors and warriors of truth. Because of the stressful nature of a t-square, we will encounter challenges under these influences. Stress levels could be high. People are more reactive. However, with patience breakthroughs may happen too.

Just now, to take a break from writing, I went to scrub my tub. I couldn’t help but realize that this is a Virgo-inspired reaction to the vulnerability of devotion. The things we love may die. And even if they don’t, we will. Loss is implied in every act of devotion. Virgo is a sign of devotion, but as a pragmatic earth sign, sometimes feels at a loss when this vulnerability arises. That is when we get the signal to scrub the tub. Do you notice this in yourself? As Mercury unties some of Virgo’s knots and as the Pisces Full Moon opens us up even more to the pain of devotion, we have the opportunity to notice our reactions and to consciously choose what we do with them. It isn’t always a bad thing to clean the tub.

 Forecast for September 12, 2016 – September 25

Moon enters Aquarius 4:28 pm CDT
Monday, September 12.
The thought of clarity coming from the heart of a Mercury retrograde period, may strike you as funny. Sometimes it feels like the best strategy for Mercury retrograde is to surrender the hope of any clarity at all. Accept befuddlement! However, the nature of the Sun is to illuminate, and that happens today when retrograde Mercury in Virgo conjoins the Sun. This conjunction occurs in the center of every Mercury retrograde cycle. I think of it as the heart of the retrograde. From the heart, we are offered the lessons of this particular cycle. Virgo likes order. Likes to know what is going on. What happens when we want control but can’t have it? How can we work with our befuddlement? A square to Sun/Mercury from Mars in Sagittarius makes this particular conjunction very interesting. The temptation to get angry is high when things don’t go the way we expect them to. Chiron in Pisces (opposing Sun/Mercury and square Mars) completes the t-square pattern. Chiron entered Pisces in April 2010 just as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill happened in the Gulf of Mexico. Since then, water issues have continued to gain our attention. Now, water protectors are struggling against the Dakota Access Pipeline’s threat to water. An element of trust is needed when we can’t control what is happening. Be open to hearing messages about that trust today. 

Moon in Aquarius
September 13—Gibbous Moon: Perfecting. The dynamic tension between earth sign Virgo (Sun) and air sign Aquarius (Moon) creates an environment ripe for discovery and invention. I think of this combo as the sign of the scientist. It could be helpful to approach this phase of the Moon as a scientist would. What are you observing about your lunar intentions? Are you getting the results you expected? What has surprised you? It may be that you still need more time before your results are conclusive, however. We aren’t even half way through the Virgo lunar cycle. This is a good time to tinker with your intentions.

I approached this Virgo cycle with an intention to fine-tune my work without caving into perfectionism. With Virgo’s devotion to service, I‘ve been seeking the sacred source of my work. So far, my biggest lessons and inspiration come from witnessing the efforts to protect the water and land at Standing Rock. Effort mixed with devotion can create miracles. Today, the Sun in Virgo forms a square to Mars in Sagittarius. The desire to act is strong. Anger, passion, and will must be tempered with discernment. This could feel frustrating but can also teach about patience. We are far from finished with the work that needs doing.

Moon enters Pisces 9:23 pm CDT
Wednesday, September 14.
Action and change are supported by the Aquarian Moon’s zeal for revolution. The Moon makes favorable contacts with Mars in Sagittarius and Uranus in Aries. Later this week (September 17), Mars and Uranus perfect their trine. These two planets encourage each other to forge new pathways and break down old barriers. Today’s idealistic and eccentric Moon pushes us to begin.

Moon in Pisces
Thursday, September 15.
Yesterday may have been feisty. Today is fraught with emotion and passion. The Moon in Pisces loosens the dam that has been holding back our emotions. They flow freely again. This may be welcomed by some and cause retriggered trauma in others. Some may react with anger. Some with an overwhelming desire to help others. The aspects are juicy and complex. The Sun in Virgo opposes Chiron in Pisces, while Mars makes an exact square to Chiron. The Sun also makes a quincunx to Uranus in Aries. In addition, tomorrow’s Full Moon, which is also an eclipse, is strongly anticipated, amping up all the feelings. Read tomorrow’s forecast to hear about these aspects influencing the half-way point of this Virgo lunar cycle. Emotion is a powerful motivator. Mars in Sagittarius desires freedom and truth. Chiron’s influence in a water sign draws our attention to this precious resource. Many indigenous people describe water as the first medicine. As Chiron is known as the first healer in Greek mythology, we are returning to this wisdom.


Moon enters Aries 11:22 pm CDT
September 16—Full Moon: Illuminating. Lunar Eclipse. Over the past week, we’ve been building to this peak of the current lunar cycle. Mars in Sagittarius has been an activator. Highly passionate and idealistic, this Mars is the focal planet of a t-square pattern involving Chiron in Pisces, the Sun in Virgo, and the Moon in Pisces. Mercury has been in stealth mode (retrograding through Virgo) acting as the collector and disseminator of information from behind the scenes. Saturn in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces are exactly square, having just perfected the last of three transits between them on September 10.

If I were going to synthesize all this (and I am, it is what I do), I’d say that devotional service has opened emotional reservoirs, releasing memories and experiences of vulnerability and idealism. Mars provokes action and reaction. Not everyone agrees. We are seeing clear demarcations in belief and values. Messages may seem clear but it is imperative that we give them our second thoughts. Mars can be harnessed, as the Water Protectors of the Sacred Stone Camp in North Dakota are showing us, for peaceful actions that further the causes we believe in. Perhaps that is the most telling way to discern whether an action is right. Is it peaceful? Does it further the health and vitality of the Earth? Are people being respected? Are we placing the values of wealth and progress beneath these essential things?

An eclipse is an opening, a doorway to a new perspective. Sometimes, this is unsettling, especially if we haven’t been paying attention to the signals that change needs to happen. No one is exempt from change. If we let Virgo take free rein in our hearts, we are able to commit 100% to the causes we believe in. This can actually feel very vulnerable when there are no guarantees and when we can’t really see where it is all leading. The Pisces Moon, presenting a mirror to Virgo, encourages faith and surrender to outcome. As we seek illumination, let us also invoke flow and trust.

The square between Saturn and Neptune indicates we are experiencing global evolution. Old belief systems are being shed. We are also seeing the ways that the old systems want to survive. Change is not happening easily, yet there is momentum. The time is ripe to add our actions and prayers to create new paradigms.

Gender justice and activism plays a role in the remaining half of the lunar cycle. An opposition between Venus in Libra and Uranus in Aries will perfect on September 18. Venus demands justice and we are shaken out of complacency by Uranus.

Moon in Aries
Saturday, September 17. The Moon in Aries amps up the fiery energy of Mars in Sagittarius in trine aspect to Uranus in Aries. Where I live, we know that summer is coming to an end when the hornets get restless. They can’t seem to settle anywhere. It is as if they know change is coming. You might be feeling the same way today. The Moon opposes Jupiter, which has just entered Libra for the next year. You may notice the shift. Libra seeks balance, justice, and elegance. Relationship is the means to achieve these. Venus in Libra makes a puzzling quincunx aspect to Chiron in Pisces. Remember to honor emotional awareness, even as we expand into action.

Moon enters Taurus 11:59 pm CDT
Sunday, September 18.
Aries is good at leaping before looking. You may notice yourself doing a bit of leaping today. The Moon in Aries comes in contact with Uranus in the same sign. Yesterday, Mars in another fire sign, Sagittarius made a supportive trine to this planet of waking up. Today, the Moon boosts the signal. What we lack in finesse is made up by eager passion. Venus is in on the action too. Venus in Libra opposes Uranus and the Moon. Lately, I’ve been thinking about Venus’ role in gender justice. We may notice an awakening around this theme today. Relationships and harmony may suffer due to a zealous desire to bring change.

Moon in Taurus
September 19—Disseminating Moon: Sharing. Whew, the Moon coming back to an earth sign may signal a needed time to slow down and restore. Mars in Sagittarius has been calling the shots lately. The Moon in Taurus makes a trine to Pluto in Capricorn and supports the Virgo intentions of this lunar cycle. We can’t be effective servants to the cause if we are exhausted or depleted. Our bodies are constantly communicating, but many of us don’t listen. Change that today, if it is true for you.

This phase of the Moon is about harvesting the wisdom we’ve gained from following the path of our intentions. Our bodies have gathered the wisdom seeded by Virgo at the New Moon. What is your body telling you about devotion, service, work?

Venus in Libra and Mars in Sagittarius work together to help us expand into action while maintaining equilibrium. This is a nice trick. May we always live in such flow and responsiveness.

Moon in Taurus
Tuesday, September 20.
Yesterday and today, the Moon in Taurus has been activating a grand earth trine, which may feel particularly potent today since it includes a stationary Mercury in Virgo. Tomorrow, Mercury will turn direct! While doing so, Mercury is also trine to Pluto in Capricorn. This is the aspect to resolve to speak truth to power. Virgo is a humble sign, but when it has righteousness behind it, watch out! All means of communication will be displayed. Mercury, himself, is communicating to our creative ingenuity in the face of power (Pluto). Passion and heart trump perfection and control. Be daring and be humble. Virgo teaches us that small steps are powerful. Join the march.

Moon enters Gemini 12:53 am CDT
Wednesday, September 21.
This advice will give you a leg up on everyone else muddling through these transits: Just don’t expect anything to work right today. There. Let the setbacks, confusion, miscommunication and travel snafus fall off your back. It isn’t the end of the world. At least, I hope not. Mercury stations direct today while the Moon in Gemini makes a grand cross aspect pattern with Saturn in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces and Mercury in Virgo. These are all mutable signs so they influence the ways we receive and transmit information. In a grand cross, all the elements are represented and so we might experience a cacophony of data in all the elemental ways: emotionally, physically, creatively, and intellectually. If you have high expectations for success, you may be more frustrated. I have a friend who reminds me to repeat, How fascinating, when things don’t turn out as expected. That might come in handy today.

Moon in Gemini
Thursday September 22.
Fall Equinox. As the Sun enters Libra, it crosses the Celestial Equator on its way south. For a brief moment, day and night, north and south, reach equilibrium. Those in the northern lands say good-bye to longer daylight hours and those in the southern lands say good-bye to longer nighttime hours. It seems we are always on our way to something else, headed towards a winter or summer. At these balancing moments, it is good to pause and center ourselves amidst the constant change of life. Libra, the sign of the scales, is a good influence on learning about balance. Libra concerns get a boost this year from Jupiter’s recent ingress into Libra. Notice how Libran themes show up for the rest of the Libra month. Jupiter just left Virgo, the sign of the current lunar cycle. As Jupiter loves to make a big impact, all things Virgo seemed to shine a little more with Jupiter there. That isn’t easy to do with such an unassuming sign as Virgo. This isn’t the case with Libra. Libra likes shiny things and doesn’t mind gathering attention towards itself. Balance and beauty are themes. Justice and relationship are others.

We may need extra balancing today with the Moon in Gemini still sparking a grand mutable cross aspect pattern (wide orb but still influential). Mutable energy is jumpy—all the more reason to find the still place within. If you can, project ahead to what you desire from this Libra influence this year. The next lunar cycle will be seeded by Libra, and it will be a time to start and strengthen such projects.

Moon enters Cancer 3:33 am CDT
September 23—Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating. The Sun has left the sign of Virgo but this lunar cycle is still influenced by the Virgo intentions we set at the New Moon on September 1. Although we may not see physical evidence yet, there is a sense that we’ve crossed another boundary. The expansive energy at the beginning of the lunar cycle is turning inward. Just as the days are getting shorter in the northern parts of the globe, the waning Moon encourages reflection and evaluation. What succeeded? What didn’t? What do you take away?

The Moon in Cancer welcomes us to the hearth. Mercury, now moving direct in Virgo, makes another exact trine to Pluto in Capricorn. Given the influence of the Cancer Moon, this may show up as a strong desire to nest, improve our homes, spend an evening crafting or cooking. Venus leaves Libra and enters Scorpio. If you are feeling tender and less social, that is OK. We are asked to look at the soulful connections in our lives. Home base is an excellent place to start.

Moon in Cancer
Saturday, September 24.
The Cancer Moon emphasizes the importance of home, security, family, and nurturance. We may be more aware of the value of these facets of life as the Moon opposes Pluto in Capricorn and makes a square to Uranus in Aries today. Pluto can be threatening. How secure do you feel? We may see others acting out of insecurity. Uranus may provoke reactivity if we are feeling insecure. But Uranus is also the wake-up call. We may see a new side to these issues. The goal may be to be more inclusive and just.

Moon enters Leo 8:48 am CDT
Sunday, September 25.
The Sun and Jupiter come into exact conjunction after midnight tonight (CDT) but we feel it all day today. Once a year, these two come together to start something big. It just so happens that this conjunction coincides with Jupiter recently entering Libra for the next year. What do you admire about your Libra friends and loved ones? Is it their sense of grace and eye for elegance? Is it the way they can ease tension in a group? Is it the fine-tuned awareness of disharmony and injustice? No, Libra isn’t perfect but I won’t get into that right now. With Jupiter’s influence we want to see the good things in this sign, and there are many. The Moon in Leo feeds all the good things Libra can bring with added joy and playfulness. There is a mild disruption in the field when the Moon makes a mid-day square to Venus in Scorpio. Venus rules Libra after all. It isn’t all bright and light. Thank goodness.



* Read about the beginning of the Virgo lunar cycle here

Contact Teri at teri@starsdanceastrology.com and visit her website at www.starsdanceastrology.com to learn about booking a reading of your chart.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Follow the Moon: August 29, 2016 - September 11

You may not realize this, unless you are a writer yourself (many of us are), but every sentence I put down on this page goes through a process of inquiry and critique. That doesn’t mean each sentence is perfect. Far from it, but each sentence must ring true for me, and just about every sentence is followed by the thought, is that what I mean? Often I wonder what assumptions are driving my point of view. I strive to have these sentences reflect the values I hold. I strive to connect intellectually and emotively with an imaginary reader, putting myself in their place, wondering if these words might help. Mostly however, that work of imagining another reader falls away and I write for myself, hoping that resonance is created for other readers, because, after all, we are mysteriously connected to each other.

I write about my writing now because the next lunar cycle, seeded by the sign of Virgo, is an opportunity to look at process, recognize expectations, wonder about assumptions, and critique effectiveness. If that doesn’t sound like fun to you, then prepare yourself for additional pressures to be perfect this month. It can be stressful. We are at a critical juncture in development. Transits from planets in mutable signs this year (Jupiter in Virgo, Saturn in Sagittarius, and Chiron and Neptune in Pisces, augmented by Mars in Sagittarius and the personal planets swarming in and out of mutable signs to trigger shifts in consciousness) have been nudging the ways we perceive and communicate, absorb and transmit. What has surprised me about this emphasis is how stressful it can be. We are complex creatures. Sensory, emotion-based information has the ability to bring up memories and traumas linked to the past. Our animal brains respond with freeze or fight messages, which can show up as not knowing what to do or feeling like we need to do a lot. Notice whether this happens to you during the next lunar cycle. As I have been learning about trauma, I’ve found a few resources you may also want to check out.

The Crazy Herbalist writing about chronic post traumatic stress
The Breathe Network – finding practitioners for trauma
Neurocosmopolitanism- Writing about neurodiversity
The Body Keeps the Score by trauma researcher and therapist Bessel Van der Kolk

  • There will be a lot to pay attention this coming lunar cycle (September 1 – September 29.) Much of it involves the mutable signs. Two eclipses: A solar eclipse at the New Moon at 9 degrees Virgo and a lunar eclipse at the Full Moon on September 16.
  • Mercury retrogrades through Virgo from August 30 to September 21 (and then recovers that territory through October 7.)
  •  Mars in Sagittarius is involved in this Mercury retrograde period by squaring the inferior conjunction of Mercury and the Sun in Virgo on September 12 and 13. (This is the heart of the retrograde period.)
  • The third and final exact square between Saturn in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces occurs on September 10.
  • Mars squares Chiron in Pisces on September 15
  • Jupiter leaves Virgo (after being in that sign for one year) for Libra on September 9.

These transits represent turning points—potential crises—but also moments of illumination and healing. Don’t be surprised if events this month feel bigger and more important than usual. And, give yourself some love, if it all seems too much.

With this awareness, I prepare myself for a period of listening to the messages I am receiving and assessing the messages I am sending. The intent is not to achieve perfection or some kind of guarantee that I will protect myself from discomfort by being vigilant enough. My intention is: to be open and resilient; ready to fine tune my work but also forgive myself when I don’t meet my expectations; and to be curious about what I might discover.

Forecast for August 29, 2016 – September 11.

Moon enters Leo 3:11 am CDT
Monday, August 29.
Stationary Mercury conjoins Venus in the last degree of Virgo. Mercury will station retrograde tomorrow. All week, Mercury in one of the signs it rules, will be making itself known in a big way. Today, Venus starts the pattern. Mythologically, Mercury is the same as Hermes. Hermes is a doorway god. He invites, challenges, and marks those liminal places where we cross a threshold. Venus crosses a threshold from Virgo to Libra today. Mercury waits there to make sure we pay attention. Mercury’s method, as a trickster god, can be to disrupt the ways we think things should go. Disruption could happen in the Venus realms of relationship, justice, art, and money. As you go through doorways today, notice those moments that ask you to rethink. We are being given a gift of flexibility and adaptability. Pride might be part of the lesson plan with the Moon transiting through Leo.

Moon in Leo
Tuesday, August 30.
Feel those mental brakes screeching to a halt. Mercury in the last degree of Virgo stations retrograde today. During this retrograde, Mercury will conjoin Jupiter for the second time. And when Mercury conjoins the Sun in the center of the retrograde journey, it will form a square to Mars in Sagittarius. The sense I get from this agenda is that Mercury wants us to reflect on our beliefs and our actions. How does belief (Jupiter’s domain) influence our actions (Mars’ domain)? How can we support belief by action? Now, Mercury’s method of encouraging reflection is usually by messing up the ways we think things should go. Setbacks, disruptions, and surprises are his specialty. We get bonus points if we can laugh our way past expectations for perfection. The Moon in fiery Leo makes a trine to Mars and Uranus in Aries today. It may be hard to slow down. Notice what happens when you don’t. There is a lot we want to get done. Does speed always help?

Moon enters Virgo 10:22 am CDT
Wednesday, August 31.
The Moon enters Virgo, and then we think about it. Or somehow unconsciously respond to that Virgoness. This is the only aspect today, but not the only influence. Mercury is still stationary. (Turned retrograde yesterday at the very last degree of Virgo). A New Moon/Solar Eclipse in Virgo happens tomorrow, along with several other transits involving the mutable signs of Virgo, Pisces, and Sagittarius. But today, we get to feel into Virgo itself. Mutable earth—a paradoxical concept combining the solidity of earth with the changeability of the mutable mode—is the guide for the next month. Perhaps the tension forces us to get busy creating more order. House cleaning can be a wonderful way to release this tension. As this is the last day of the Leo lunar cycle, getting rid of clutter is a great way to prepare for a new beginning.


Moon in Virgo
September 1—New Moon: Dreaming. Solar Eclipse. What Virgos love: ingenious systems, work that serves, analysis, doing what you say you will do, sharing the load, healing, integration, discernment. I am not a Virgo, though as an astrologer it is my job to have a list of keywords and ideas for each sign. I am not a Virgo, but I hold this sign in such high esteem, sometimes I wonder if I am piling on too much when I describe the gifts and shadows of this sign. I invite those with Virgo emphasis in their charts to let me know what you think.

There is so much to do in this season. In the Northern Hemisphere, it is the end of summer. The season’s metaphor tells me this sign is busy bringing in the harvest, discerning what is best used now and what is best kept and organized for the coming winter. The integration work of summer, oddly enough, is concerned with being helpful, pragmatic, and effective. If we’ve been given a lot in the season of abundance, we better do something useful with it. This can bring a load of pressure. That is the demon Virgo wrestles with, being satisfied with a good enough job.

My philosophy is that we need to develop skillfulness around each of the signs, regardless of whether those signs are emphasized in our charts. This is why I practice mindful intention at each New Moon. Through the course of a year, I will have set intention for each sign and observed myself through that lens. Even though I am not a Virgo, I get to become a little more Virgoan this month. You can too.

This New Moon has unique power. There is a Solar Eclipse. The Moon moves in front of the Sun at 9 degrees Virgo. This happens to closely oppose Neptune in Pisces at 10 degrees Pisces and squares both Saturn and Mars at 10 and 13 degrees Sagittarius respectively. Mercury is retrograde in Virgo to boot, while conjoining Jupiter at the end of its year-long transit through Virgo. It all just feels so darn auspicious, which is a funny word when one thinks of the naturally humble sign of Virgo.

Big stuff is brewing. Notice your passions. Virgo is a sign of devotion. It can selflessly serve the ideals that it wholeheartedly believes in. There is opportunity to do shadow work around our passions and devotions this month with two eclipses occurring, both today and at the Full Moon on September 16. Shadow work means looking beyond the obvious to what we might want to hide or might be afraid to acknowledge. The shadows can hold gifts. Often we stop ourselves from claiming those gifts due to assumptions or cultural programming. The Saturn/Neptune square that has influenced our collective assumptions for at least the last year makes its third and last exact connection on September 10. I’ve seen many people respond to this transit by investigating the conditioning of racism. There is a strong opening right now to see past the beliefs that support white supremacy into a different story and relationship between people. Dismantling thought patterns that support injustice, greed, and destruction of our ecosystems is not an easy task! What if the eclipses, along with Mercury’s retrograde, were an opportunity to reboot our stories?

I ask myself, how can I be the most daring I have ever been, while serving the ideals I most believe in? That is a Virgo intention. Squares and oppositions mean there will be challenges. Some of them will be health-related. The conjunction between Saturn and Mars is a classic example of needing to tend energy resources. We will most likely have to move slower than our passions desire. Mercury in retrograde will somehow make it harder to do the very things we care most about. This could be a time to look at self-expectations. Mercury loves a good sense of humor, even when we are saving the world. The conjunction between Mercury and Jupiter is fraught with lessons in humility, while at the same time daring to be bigger in our devotions. The planets seem to be saying, show up to make a difference, even when there are no guarantees. It isn’t about any one of us. We each get to take our tiny steps towards a better collective vision. Wow. I’m ready. How about you?

Moon enters Libra 7:55 pm CDT
Friday, September 2.
See yesterday’s New Moon forecast for information about today. The Moon continues in Virgo for most of the day (Central time zone). The Sun in Virgo exactly opposes Neptune in Pisces. Mercury retrograde exactly conjoins Jupiter in Virgo. The Moon joins them both. Sun/Neptune activates our hearts to feel more empathy while wanting to save those who suffer. This is wonderfully altruistic, yet these feelings can be taken too far. That is the nature of an opposition. Where do we need to pull back into balance? The Mercury/Jupiter connection makes things bigger. One of these things could be expectations for perfection or resentment about how much we do for others. In the end, this aspect encourages us to pull back our expectations. Small steps are truly powerful. Honor those steps, then maybe get a massage.

Moon in Libra
Saturday, September 3. Finally the Moon moves into a cardinal sign. We may be feeling a need to stop all this self-reflection and just get on with it. Venus in Libra conjoins the Moon. This is a wonderful aspect to take in the arts, to create and appreciate harmony, to participate in gracious social environments. The underbelly of all this pleasure comes from the square between the Moon and Pluto in Capricorn. Injustices goad us. You might want to do something about it.

Moon in Libra
Sunday, September 4.
This is another day to take in experiences of beauty and harmony. Today, the Moon in balancing Libra opposes Uranus in Aries, triggering a need to do something about injustice or imbalance. An encouraging sextile aspect between the Moon and Mars in Sagittarius supports our actions. After this holiday weekend (Labor Day in the U.S.), it will be time to get down to business. Use the energy to mentally prepare yourself.

Moon enters Scorpio 7:38 am CDT
September 5—Crescent Moon: Beginning. This lunar cycle, seeded in the sign of Virgo, has already been influenced by significant celestial events over the last week. Mercury stationing retrograde in Virgo and a solar eclipse are just two of the most noticeable. This phase of the Moon is when we begin in earnest to manifest our lunar intention for the month. As we witness the new crescent Moon right after the sunset, we can take encouragement that this beginning will be a good one. What are your plans for the fall season ahead? You may be feeling eager to get to work. Virgo is a hard-working sign. It asks us to tend to the pragmatic details of any act of service or work. What are you devoted to? What skill will you hone as you commit to service to that ideal?

The energy of probing our deeper layers in order to prepare for new work comes from the Moon’s transit of Scorpio today. Don’t be surprised if you are feeling less social on this holiday. The real focus may be on our interior lives.

Moon in Scorpio
Tuesday, September 6.
Death makes life more precious. That may be a strange thought for a Tuesday following a holiday weekend, but there is support for that thought today with the Moon in Scorpio making favorable aspects to Neptune in Pisces and Pluto in Capricorn. Of course, we may be feeling the surge of industrious energy with so much influencing us from Virgo right now, but we might also be moved to slow down to contemplate the nature of life and death. What makes your work meaningful?

Moon enters Sagittarius 8:20 pm CDT
Wednesday, September 7.
It feels like a cliché, but I’ve seen it many times. Strong Venus transits often call attention to women and women’s issues. Venus is strongly placed in a sign that it rules, Libra. Today Venus makes a favorable aspect to Saturn in Sagittarius and a challenging aspect to Neptune in Pisces. There may be people who want to bring confusion to issues of gender justice, but there is also support to bring a message or action forward. Libra is about more than beauty and harmony. The sign of the scales is on a mission for justice too. The Sun in trine aspect to Pluto increases the power of this day to cut out the crap. Be brave and bold as you move toward justice.

Moon in Sagittarius
Thursday September 8.
We re-enter the mutable zone with the Moon in mutable fire sign, Sagittarius, making aspects to Saturn in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces. Saturn and Neptune are two days away from the third and final exact square. With the Moon’s help, we see examples of what this transit is about. Since these outer planets influence the collective experience, we have to look at the broader issues in the world. Water issues, refugees crises, fundamentalism, and racism are such issues described by this turning point transit. Even as we take hope that people are coming out from under the spells of greed and hostility, we see evidence in social media that people are more polarized and willing to be hateful towards each other than ever. The Virgo mission of this lunar cycle may have us asking, what more can I do to shift the tide towards love?

Moon in Sagittarius
September 9—First Quarter Moon: Manifesting. (See yesterday’s forecast for a description of today’s influences.) The First Quarter square is when we really start to notice our challenges in manifesting lunar intentions. The challenges bring gifts and breakthroughs. We have to expand to take in more information. Options increase, but also the desire to give up. There’s a lot going on today, I suspect we will feel less like giving up and more like getting on with it. Jupiter leaves Virgo behind to transit through the cardinal air sign, Libra, for the next year. It is as if some tension we’ve been holding around self-assessment and critique is suddenly let go and we dive right into the beauty of collaboration, making art, and working for justice. The Moon in Sagittarius, for all its challenges to get clear right now, embraces a sense of freedom in this shift. Freedom (Sagittarius) and service (Virgo) need to go hand in hand through the rest of this cycle. It feels like a big contradiction. But an interesting one.

Retrograding Mercury in Virgo makes a paradoxical aspect to Uranus in Aries. There is a huge unpredictable, tricksterish quality to this influence. It pays to be clever to get what you want and what you need in service to your devotions. The Moon activates Mars in Sagittarius and Uranus. Unexpected impulses move us forward even if we have to backtrack a bit to recover.

Moon enters Capricorn 7:54 am CDT
Saturday, September 10.
In November 2015, Saturn in Sagittarius made the first of three squares to Neptune in Pisces. Today, is the last time these two planets make this particular aspect to each other. The next time they are in waning square will be in about 36 years. The relationship between these outer planets describe current events and challenges of the moment. Much of the most difficult transits of the last few months have involved these planets. What have we been noticing? The fairytale about the Emperor’s new clothing comes to mind. Collective assumptions color our perceptions. If we notice that our stories aren’t serving us, then how do we see beyond the assumptions? This feels like the work of this waning square. In 1989, Saturn and Neptune conjoined to begin this current cycle. That year, the world experienced the protests in Tiananmen Square and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Something new was in the air related to liberation and shifts in political forms. Collective stories were molded by collective beliefs. Much of that idealism has been shown to be false hope, and yet, we still strive to expose falsehoods in our collective stories. The waning square is the part of the cycle where we get to be critical of what has gone before, even if we still have the same intentions. We are learning to see the stories being told in the media, in our schools, and in our national myths that do not serve us. The Moon in Capricorn gives us the ability to look with a critical eye at where we have been and what it will take to get where we want to go.

Moon in Capricorn
Sunday, September 11.
Remember Venus in Libra and her concern with gender justice? That issue is likely to come up today with a square between Venus and Pluto in Capricorn. The Moon conjoins Pluto, making this even more likely to be a day of exposure and anger about injustice. The earth energy of Capricorn and Virgo will help us focus anger into productive action.



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