Don't forget to check out the current New Moon / Full Moon Horoscopes for your Sign!
This is a very busy month, transit-wise! ("What's a transit?")
We have the New Moon in Cancer (July.06), which
challenges us to find new ways to nurture ourselves in the face of
uncertainty, and develop flexibility in how we protect ourselves in
vulnerable times. This culminates at the Full Moon in Capricorn
(July.21 – the second in a row in Capricorn!) which brings the need for new
awareness about how we use force and willpower to balance conformity and
structure with the need to walk your own path.
You may feel inspired to expand far beyond your usual boundaries during this time, although this may or may not work in the way you want it to. It can be a time of challenge, when you decide now is the time to reach beyond your usual grasp and make the ultimate push for something you believe will bring you true happiness, fulfilment and prosperity. Whether this will initiate a new dream, or be a temporary grab at self-confidence, will depend largely on how prepared you are to follow through after the fanfare. It can be easy to overestimate the results and underestimate the amount of work necessary to sustain your dream and keep it from being just a flash in the pan. Avoid being overconfident and making promises you can't keep (including to yourself).
During this transit, you are more open than usual to spontaneity, surprises and flying by the seat of your pants! Your sense of humour and fun are finely tuned now, as is your ability to break out of old outworn habits. It's a great time to try new things and experiment with something that's out of character for you. In fact, it may be surprising how easy it is to break out of your usual routine...so much so that it's wise to be careful not to be too reckless under this transit. Have fun pushing the envelope, but don't rip it to shreds.
July.04 – Mercury enters the Pre-Retrograde Shadow (in Leo) ("What's the Shadow?")
Mercury is now in the area of the zodiac where it will go retrograde from July.22 to Aug.15. Today marks the beginning of the overall Mercury Retrograde cycle, which lasts until Aug.30. Between now and July.22, be aware of situations that are developing in your life, especially regarding new ideas, contracts, creative projects, new learning, and communication (including emails and the Internet). Many of these events and situations will lead to deeper examination and development over the next couple of months. It's very likely that decisions made now will need rethinking or changing later during this period, as new information and insight become clear.
It's advisable, if possible, to avoid signing contracts or launching new projects while Mercury is actually retrograde (July.22 to Aug.15). On the other hand, life goes on and things can't always be put on hold for two months! Also, the Mercury retrograde dance can be a natural part of a trial-and-error process, in which you take one step forward, see what the result is, and then step back to rethink your actions. The important idea is not to paint yourself into a corner by making final decisions that can't be changed later without creating serious problems. Try to build in some flexibility, so that you can adjust your gameplan later as new information is revealed.
July.04-09 – YOD (Mercury-Venus SXT Jupiter, QCX Uranus) ("What's a Yod?")
The Yod aspect configuration creatively balances opportunity with frustration to form a philosophical learning experience. Although these planets are in orb from July.04-09, it peaks on July.6 and its energy colours the entire New Moon cycle (July.6 to Aug.4.) Mercury, Venus in sextile to Jupiter invite social, creative and communication opportunities that can expand and inspire your interactions with friends and lovers, beauty and sensuality, and your awareness of possibilities. Then Uranus jumps into the mix, bringing an unpredictable and disruptive element, which might be a bit frustrating at a time when you were hoping for more effortless results. The possibilities may then seem so fragmented or endless that you become overwhelmed by your choices. Don't get distracted by the "factor x" that's stirring up the pot. And don't let yourself get so mesmerized by unforeseen possibilities that you lose track of what you really want. Stay focused and keep your eyes on the prize. Keep this in mind throughout the coming lunar cycle too.
July.06 8:02am EDT – NEW MOON IN CANCER ("What's a New Moon?")
The New Moon cycle in Cancer gives us all the opportunity to explore the Cancer side of our lives—home, family, nurturing, personal needs, feelings and emotions, intuition, creativity, memories, the past, feminine energy, and taking care of yourself emotionally. This 28-day cycle, culminating at the Full Moon on July.21, will unfold a growing awareness about how to use unpredictability, disorder and stress in creative, innovative ways. How do you cope emotionally when things don't go as expected or when your needs are frustrated? How can you use your assertive anger or philosophical understanding to protect yourself when you feel unsafe or judged? Be sure to read the description of the Yod (July.04-09, above) for more about the energy of this New Moon cycle. It is time to learn better ways to take care of yourself, defend your vulnerable areas, and deal with injustice, especially in terms of how you interact with others and how you project your desires and ambitions out into your surroundings. This process may take you through experiences that are unexpected, subtle or paradoxical, and your self-perception and creative self-expression will gain strength by developing flexibility.
Be sure to check the New Moon Horoscope for your Sign!
Social connections, diplomatic communication and receptive awareness mark this transit. It can be a great time to negotiate contracts or agreements because the communication can flow fairly easily. Focus your awareness on achieving a mutual balance between you and the other person—a win-win solution is always going to be helpful, but especially now. This can also be a time of appreciating and expressing beauty, pleasure and sensuality. If there's someone you want to get closer to (in terms of romance, friendship, business, partnership, or even an enemy!), talking openly and listening receptively can be the key that unlocks the door. You may also get new creative ideas from your interactions with people or while observing them. This transit has been in the background since late June, but reaches its peak now.
July.11-22 – Grand Trine in FIRE (Venus/Mercury, Mars, Pluto) ("What's a Grand Trine?")
During this period, energy is likely to be high and accessible—perhaps a little too accessible! At its best, this aspect configuration can pump your physical, mental, emotional and passionate energy up higher than usual, making you more focused, optimistic, upbeat and enthusiastic. At its worst, it could also trigger outbursts of anger more easily, the urge to impose your will on others, and an argumentative, combative attitude. Sexual energy may also be very high, and flirting could easily jump into your interactions—just be sure to use good judgement if you're tempted to act on those impulses! (like, condoms) This energy is likely to be the most noticeable around July.14-16, when the Moon gets involved and the other planets are at their closest orbs. On the other hand, this energy may pass barely noticed and all you experience is a background feeling of well-being and "all being right with the world," since a Grand Trine can be easy to take for granted. To tap into this energy to your best advantage, take time to do things that recharge your batteries, that rekindle your spirit, faith and hope, and that take you a step further in some long-term process or goal in your life. You may feel your inspiration goes a bit flat after the July.22, when Mercury goes retrograde, but keep your faith in the process and wait for the return in August.
Romance, idealism, fantasy and imagination are blossoming into a bright aura right now, which is likely to influence your relationships, interactions, finances and values—for better or for worse! Compassion, caring and selfless giving can be good ideals to aim for, as long as you remember that all ideals lose some of their shiny glow when they're translated into hard reality. If you forget this, the end result may disappoint or disillusion you. Aim to balance your innocence and longing with the judgement of your older, wiser, mature self; and do a reality check with a trusted friend or adviser if in doubt. That said, this can also be a very creative and inspiring time—just keep one foot on the ground.
July.12 – Sun SQR Mars (in Cancer/Aries)
Assertiveness, aggression and intense energy burst out during this transit. This can be a time of being pushed into taking action...or it can erupt in anger, irritation and hostility (in yourself or others). It may seem like everything pushes your buttons and rubs you the wrong way, creating stress and putting you on edge. You may feel the impulse to burn off this excess energy through sexual, aggressive or erratic activity. If you look beneath the irritation you may see a frustrated part of you that wants change, yet you have held back for some reason. Being pro-active and initiating steps for voluntary change is preferable, since you will have far more control over the process than if you get pushed into a corner and forced to take action. The more prepared you can be in this moment, the more successful you're likely to be. But if you get caught in a whirlwind of stormy change, connect yourself to the part of you that wants this change and let that ground and guide you.
Inspired thinking, mental fantasy, imaginative ideas and lucid dreams are likely during this transit. This can result in enormous creativity that sees inspiration and magical ideas in the world around you (be sure to write them down to develop later). Your communication may be unusually intuitive and inspiring now. However, it can also be a time when your perceptions about reality are a bit off and coloured by wishful thinking and irrational conclusions. Doing a reality check with a trusted friend or advisor is a good idea, especially if you are trying to make important decisions right now. But be sure to explore any non-rational or irrational thinking, since the veil between the conscious and unconscious mind is thin now and you can learn much by observing your thoughts and perceptions. (This is the first of three passes of this transit: July.13, Aug.02 and Aug.26, taking place in Mercury's upcoming retrograde cycle. Watch for greater and longer-term implications to the events in your life under this July.13 pass, which will be revisited in some form on the other two dates.)
This is the most powerful component of the Grand Trine in Fire (see July.11-22), which is peaking now. There is a strong urge to embrace and engage power, assert your desires and act on deep impulses. Your sexual energy may also be very high now (use it wisely). You may feel like nothing can stop you or hold you back, and it is true that your ability to create change and take action is especially strong right now. If you have been preparing to put plans into action, this can be a powerful time to do that. But also be aware that too much of a good thing can backfire: it is possible to overstep your bounds or come on a bit too strong, with this energy. Suppressed anger, frustration or an urge to "vanquish the enemy" may explode out more forcefully than you intend. It will help to balance this intense Mars-Pluto energy with a little sensitivity, gentleness, compassion and humility...not so much that it gets over-diluted, but enough to keep a healthy balance.
Saturn only changes signs about every two years, so this is a pretty significant shift of energy for all of us. Saturn represents authority, limits, boundaries, responsibility, structure, maturity, discipline and hard work—all the things most of us love to hate! But these are qualities that we all need in order to keep our freedom from degenerating into chaos. Saturn prunes away the deadwood in order to make room for new growth, because limitless growth eventually chokes out other possibilities. Saturn in Leo challenges us to apply these principles to our sense of self, self-esteem, self-image, creative self-expression, children, and how we embrace fun and joy in our lives. Over the next two years, there are times when these areas of our lives may feel inhibited, blocked or uninspired, but it is important to remember that its purpose is to restructure and reshape those areas. Saturn in Leo also encourages us to manifest our creative ambitions over the next two years—not just artistic, but anything new that we create, which pushes the boundaries of what is routine or familiar to us. We are challenged to work hard in order to gain the rewards at the end of that long term creative process, which will include strengthened personal identity, a stronger sense of self, a simpler and more straightforward relationship with our children, and a new enjoyment of life that comes from being able to enjoy the fruits of our labours.
July.16 – Venus TRI Pluto (in Leo/Sagittarius)
Close one-on-one connections with people (close friends, lovers, partners of all kinds) can benefit from being taken to a deeper level now. Instead of automatically doing the diplomatic, "nice" thing, consider how you might be more authentic in sharing your feelings, reaching out to people, and ensuring that your interests are equally balanced with those of others. The trick is to do this without trying to suppress, control or overpower the other person's interests.
It will be a lot easier to balance assertiveness with diplomacy under this transit. In fact, it is a great time to take decisive action that requires a sensitive touch, and to negotiate agreements in a way that is confident and shrewd but fair. Your ability to attract (money, love, pleasure, flirting, etc.) is strong and finely tuned right now, so use it wisely. It could also be a time when you might be tempted to spend money and act on your desires rather impulsively—don't over-extend yourself, but do enjoy!
This transit is about learning to balance the conventional expectations (put on us by society and authority figures) with the need to be true to yourself (even if that means having to find your own path away from the mainstream). This is especially true during the coming year, in somewhat the same way that it was also true during 1991-93 (when Saturn and Chiron were in the same signs, but reversed). In fact, if you think back, you'll probably find that many of the changes that happen in the coming year (especially involving your individuality, uniqueness, identity and how you find your place in collective society) have their roots in the early 1990s.
This transit is just the latest of 27 (!) oppositions between Saturn and Chiron that take place between 1986 and 2006. The effects of this particular pass can be felt from early June until the end of August, this year. However, the effects will be more focused after July.16 (when Saturn enters Leo) and will peak around today's date (when the aspect is exact). The last two passes were discussed in The Low-Down on the Far-Out, for Aug.15.2004 and Dec.28.2004. Being part of such a long-term process (30 years), this particular pass may or may not be felt on a personal level, but its themes (balancing freedom with conformity, rebellion with convention, and collective teamwork with personal independence) will certainly be there in the background. Watch for signs of it in the big picture of what's happening in your corner of the world.
July.21-Aug.05 – T-Square in FIXED signs (Full Moon, Saturn/Chiron OPP, T-Square to Mars) ("What's a T-Square?")
The Saturn-Chiron opposition (see above) is in effect throughout June, July and August, but right now it is being brought into sharper focus by a T-square to Mars. This is a time when Saturn-Chiron issues may well flare into external events, tempers may run hot, and courage will help get you through it all. Like the ache in weak muscles after being exercised, you may experience frustration as you strive toward new goals, but the remedy is to strengthen your determination, your resolve and the focus of your ambition. It may be necessary to rethink your direction or the way you are going after your goals, but it is not meant to stop you from making progress. The important thing here is to strive for that balance between conformity and rebellion; between slowing down due to intimidation or discouragement, versus slowing down in order to take things one deliberate step at a time. Mars also changes signs while in this aspect configuration, from Aries to Taurus, which will shift the mood from being fiery, reactive and wilful, to being slower, methodical and perhaps more accepting of the hard work and discipline necessary to achieve your goals. For more about the ingredients of this T-square, read Saturn OPP Chiron (July.21), Mars in Taurus (July.28), Mars SQR Chiron (July.28) and Mars SQR Saturn (July.31), all elsewhere on this page.
July.21 – FULL MOON IN CAPRICORN ("What's a Full Moon?")
The last Full Moon was also in Capricorn (Jun.22), giving us a chance to delve that much deeper into the energy. Both of these Capricorn Full Moons are very powerful in their own ways. Whereas the June Full Moon occurred across the powerful Solstice Points, this one is aligned with across Saturn-Chiron opposition. This one will likely focus the need to balance conventional knowledge with lunatic wisdom, and bring this into the foreground on a personal level. The flexible, philosophical approach to self-care that you've been cultivating since the New Moon will give you strength, resources and protection to support you in meeting this challenge. This Full Moon also initiates the intense energy of the Fixed T-Square (see July.21 above), and for about a week after the Full Moon it may put a sharp edge on your desire to forge ahead with your goals and break through any barriers in your way. You may find that you (or others around you) become quite reactive, forceful or determined about achieving your (or their) objectives. On the other hand, you might also feel discouraged, resentful or depressed about conforming to circumstances that seem to clip your wings and restrict your freedom. Take heart! Use that flexibility and self-nurturing you've been developing since the New Moon to support your vulnerable feelings and transform your resentment into mature objection, your frustration into grounded resolve, and your discouragement into disciplined strength.
Be sure to check out your Full Moon Horoscope for your Sign!
Happy Solar Return to all Leos out there! Leo is the Sun’s own sign, so the Sun's usual focus on individuality, identity, leadership, self-esteem, creativity, self-expression and fun shine more brightly than usual for all of us. For the next month we will all benefit by rejuvenating, revitalising and rekindling the fiery spirit of your unique essence. Do something that reminds you of who you are and celebrate your existence! Recharge your batteries and do things that help you return to the centre of the orbiting circumstances in your life—not spinning around at the edges where you feel at the mercy of everything around you. Celebrate You!
July.22 – Venus in Virgo (until Aug.16)
This is a time to fall in love with purity, precision and analysis, and to invest in health, efficiency, and your contribution to the world around you. The beauty is in the details, as you embrace a labour of love in your life. Just don't get so enamoured with pristine splendour that you get lost in perfectionism and unable to accept the natural imperfection that exists in all life and humanity. We are all the Goddess' perfect child, but we are also in a state of becoming and growing. We're here for the journey, as much as the destination.
July.22 – Mercury goes Retrograde (until Aug.15) ("What's Mercury Retrograde?")
Mercury now goes retrograde in Leo for the next 3½
weeks. For up to a week before and after today (when the retrograde station
happens), you may experience intensity, frustration, confusion or feeling
like you're bogging down in your progress. Mercury retrograde is typically a
time when it is necessary to rethink, rehash and reflect, and it is common
for new insight to emerge later in the retrograde cycle that you didn't
anticipate. Because of this, it is advisable to avoid making final,
permanent decisions (e.g., signing contracts) during this time, but it is an
excellent time to do your homework, research and fact-finding in preparation
for major decisions.
For a few days before and after this date, you are likely to feel the Saturn-Chiron opposition on a more personal basis (see July.21 above). The energy that emerged at the Full Moon (July.21) will also come into sharper focus. You may feel like some of your recent confidence and progress are blocked or restricted, forcing you to deal with a conflict of interest between your responsibility to society (or other authority) and responsibility to yourself. Probably the best way to resolve this is to do whatever is necessary to satisfy the Powers That Be, while also including your own interests on your priority list and doing what is necessary to preserve your own integrity. The situation may not be resolved in the ideal way you were hoping for, but it can still be dealt with effectively and let you get on with life. And you will be stronger for it!
Making steady progress with your goals and stabilising your energy are among the effects of this transit. Mars now enters Taurus and stays there for an unusually long time, because it will go retrograde in the fall (spring, if you're Downunder), extending its time there (more about this in future columns). In general, this is a good time to move forward with your ambitions, especially doing the "grunt work" of routine, methodical work—putting one foot in front of the other, as it were, and making slow steady progress in your projects. Be careful not to get so locked into one direction or focus that you become stubborn, rigid, counterproductive, overcautious, or burn out from workaholism. It's a great time to "make hay while the Sun shines" but don't stay out so long you get sunburned. It's also a good time to make plans and take steps to carry out some of the enthusiastic inspiration from the Grand Trine in Fire (see July.11-22 above). If your physical energy seems to be sagging a bit, it will make up for it in endurance.
July.28 – Mars SQR Chiron (in Taurus/Aquarius)
It may be time to confront issues in your life that involve how/why you get hurt by others, how you hurt others, and how healing can take place in these situations. Your awareness of this may due to a conflict in your life, but this can be a valuable learning experience for you, more-so than usual. Part of the problem may be that you need to tread your own path but are avoiding this for whatever reasons—perhaps circumstances compel you to satisfy others' expectations, or perhaps you are still struggling to muster the courage to find and walk your own path. Whatever the reasons, this transit may give you a push that will help to steer you in a healing direction, possibly by showing you how and why the path you have been on does not lead to where you want to go. If you start to feel overwhelmed, take some time out from the stress to get re-centered and grounded.
Relationships, social interaction, material resources and your sense of emotional balance may be a bit unpredictable or unstable around this time, as Uranus the Awakener sounds a wake-up gong in these areas. The idea is to become more flexible and more open to a broader vision of what is possible in those areas. There may also be weak links in the affected areas that need to be repaired and strengthened, or else broken and released so that new opportunities can come in. Trust the process and keep your eyes open to seeing new truth and insight.
This transit has sometimes been described as feeling like you're "driving with the brakes on." Often you want to move forward and get ahead, but find you must hold back, delay or change your direction. But this friction (between what you want versus the reality that must be dealt with) can give you a spiritual and psychological workout that strengthens your purpose and resolve. Arguments and conflicts may occur under this transit, especially with anyone whom you see as an authority figure, and your efforts may feel like an uphill struggle for a few days. But you’re not without power, ability or options. Hard work and facing up to the things you've been avoiding will help you get past the frustration.
July.31 – Chiron in Capricorn (until Dec.05)
Chiron retrogrades temporarily back into Capricorn, before it fully commits itself to Aquarius in December. Chiron peeked into Aquarius last Feb.21, introducing a new focus to our experience of groups, friends and community. For the next four months, we will be tying up loose ends from our experiences during Chiron's journey through Capricorn, since Dec.2001. This brought us opportunities to understand how we feel alienated or supported (or both) by convention, conformity and ambition, as well as the price we pay for having order and predictability in our lives. The next four months is a time to finalise any changes we have made (or wanted to make) in our attitudes, expectations, integrity and ambitions throughout the last three and a half years in the affected areas. It is also a time to consider what implications these changes will have in the upcoming context of groups, community, and balancing our need to honour our uniqueness with the needs of the Collective.
© 2005 Wendy Guy