Low-Down Archives Oct-Nov 2009

October-November 2009

For the New Moon in Libra:
October 18 to November 2, 2009

...and Full Moon in Taurus:
November 2 to 16, 2009

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Oct.18 – NEW MOON in LIBRA (24:58 of Libra

NEW MOON in LIBRA

Ottawa, Canada and
Washington DC, USA:

Oct.18, 1:33 AM EDT

London, UK:

Oct.18, 6:33 AM GMT

Sydney, AU:

Oct.18, 4:33 PM AEDT

"What's a New Moon?"

Read more about the Sun-Moon cycles.

Read more about how you experience LIBRA energy in your life.

After such an intense New Moon in Virgo on Sep.18, the New Moon in Libra might seem tame by comparison, but don't mistake that for being boring or unchallenging!

At the moment we have a plethora of planets in Air signs, starting with the Sun, Moon, Mercury and Venus in Libra, soon to be joined by Saturn on Oct.29. There's also Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune in Aquarius. That's over half the solar system in Air signs right now!

Air is all about communication, information and your mindset. But Libra is the sign of love, which is an emotion, right? Well, yes and no. There are the emotions of affection, attraction, infatuation and euphoria, but love is ultimately a choice. And choices require information, thought, deliberation and the weighing of alternatives – the stuff of Air. Feelings come and go – one day your dear heart can walk on water and the next day you're having fantasies of drowning them.

Love, if it's to last, needs a commitment that can ride out the emotional ups and downs. When we wander off the path, the mind can put us back on track easier than the heart can. Our conscious choices can move us to hang in there through the rough parts of a relationship when we feel let down, bored, disappointed or angry. Or, they can lead us to consider whether an alternative path would be the better way.

Making a choice can involve negotiation, where we bargain and strategize to see if a compromise or different balance of priorities would make the situation or relationship work better for all concerned. In order to create peace and harmony, it's often necessary to confront and rearrange the issues so that they fit together better.

If one or both sides are especially stubborn, hostile or uncooperative, the quest for peace can become a battle. Hence, Libra is known as both the peace maker and the war maker. There are few battlegrounds more familiar to us than love and relationships. "All's fair in love and war," as the saying goes, and no one knows this better than Libra. This lunar cycle that starts at the New Moon in Libra has an unusually strong focus in that sign. Venus is in its own sign of Libra, making Libra energy very pronounced and reinforcing both its "positive" and "negative" qualities.

A dominant priority during this lunar cycle is likely to be fairness, harmony and peace. However, bear in mind that fairness means rebalancing the scales, and in order for one side to increase it usually means the other side must give something up. In order to achieve peace, compromise is necessary. But how much is too much or too little? What does balance look like? It requires an objective assessment (another Air quality), since each side usually only sees change in terms of win or lose. One side's gain involves the other side's loss to some degree. It's the law of opposites.

So, ironically, generating peace and establishing fairness can often evoke conflict, as each side strategizes to keep or gain as much as possible while losing or sacrificing as little as possible. And yet, every mediator knows that both sides must both give AND get something in order for that rebalancing to be effective. In a way, it could be said that if both sides walk away from the bargaining table unhappy then the mediator has done his/her job. (And the mediator is probably a Libra!)

In the current New Moon chart, Venus is within orb but separating from a previous conjunction to Saturn (Oct.13) as well as a separating square (90°) to Pluto (Oct.15). Saturn continues in its opposition (180°) to Uranus, as well as its approaching square (90°) to Pluto. We are now dealing with the results, aftermath or consequences of a commitment or decision that we made probably during the last lunar cycle (Sep.18 to Oct.18). This process or decision may well involve implications that are not easy to fulfil, and yet it is through meeting that challenge that we will find a level of peace and balance that might not be possible if we walked away from it. Even if this is a short-term process for you, it will have ripple effects that are far reaching.

We could use a little help from courageous Mars, who is proud to help having just recently moved from sensitive Cancer into confident Leo (Oct.16). However, Mars is also entering the retrograde Shadow now and will spend the next 8 months in Leo. (Yes, you read that right!)

As soon as Mars enters Leo it forms a quincunx (150° sometimes called an inconjunct) aspect to Pluto, which is extremely close at the time of the New Moon. This Mars-Pluto quincunx can be a tricky energy because it introduces the potentially frustrating dynamic of having confidence in your sense of purpose and self-expression, and yet the reaction you get from others (or from your own unconscious) might seem to undermine your success or approval. The result can be to feel caught between courage and intimidation or between assertiveness and aggression.

In the context of the New Moon in Libra, this could possibly push the balancing act into extreme swings of reaction in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" kind of way. However, Mars is still sextile (60°) to both Saturn and Venus, so you may find you have strength, skill, sensitivity or diplomacy to draw on from past decisions or experiences, which can help stabilize you a bit. At its best, this combination of energies can help you increase your awareness of how you handle your personal power and teach you how to create balance in stressful situations.

Mercury, Sun and Moon are collectively in trine aspect (120°) to Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune. It is through generosity of spirit and being alert to optimistic possibilities that you can avoid or get past being stuck in a dilemma or impasse. A powerful resource right now is to reach out for support, guidance and insight from a friend, advisor, associate or your astrologer.

Oct.19 – Mars enters the Retrograde Shadow (until May.18.2010) ("What does retrograde mean?"  Read about Mars Retrograde.  Read more about Mars Retrograde.  Learn more about Retrogrades.)

Mars now enters the Retrograde Shadow – the area of the Zodiac where it will go retrograde (Dec.20.2009 to Mar.10.2010). Similar to when Mercury goes into the Retrograde Shadow, you will start to increasingly feel the effects of the coming Mars retrograde, between now and Dec.20.

Mars retrograde can increase or decrease the things to do with Mars – anger, physical energy, motivation, sexual energy, etc. The important thing to remember is that, as with all retrogrades, Mars retrograde will require the reconsideration or redoing of things to do with Mars. So, whatever Mars-like themes emerge in your life during this time are likely to need reworking later when Mars goes retrograde. For example, you may feel an urgency to take action that winds up having to be reconsidered or redirected later (during or after the retrograde period). You might feel very motivated, focused and driven to make progress with plans and ideas you have been thinking about, although needing to make some changes to these plans while retrograde. You might feel increasingly on a "short fuse," from feeling pressured or stressed. You could become more sensitive to hostility, anger, sexual energy or defensiveness in others. This tension could become unavoidable during the retrograde period, forcing you to deal with conflicts that have been building for a while. Or, tensions could suddenly drop during the retrograde, and like the calm centre of a hurricane, give you a period of "cease-fire" in which to reconsider your position and decide which battles are important enough to fight and which ones are best left alone. Your physical energy may also increase or decrease during this time.

During this retrograde cycle, Mars makes only a few repeating aspects to other planets during this retrograde cycle. One of them is Mars sextile Saturn (60°): Oct.12.2009, Feb.15.2010 and Mar.22, which gives the opportunity for stabilizing of emotions, ground action and well laid plans. Among the more notable is that it stations retrograde between 2-5 degrees shy of an opposition aspect (180°) to Chiron, Jupiter and Neptune. In fact, Mars stays within orb of this opposition for some time – roughly Nov.09.2009 to Jan.15.2010. This two-month opposition brings your idealism and spiritual wounding/healing process to bear on your passion, desires and impulses. Your need to express your individuality may seem in conflict with your principles and aspirations. The long opposition provides a setting within which to work through any conflicts, projections and emotional reactions.

The last time Mars was retrograde was Nov.15.2007 to Jan.30.2008. At that time Mars spent most of the retrograde cycle opposite Pluto, challenging us to dig deep into our passions to connect with our personal power. This time, as Mars opposes the Jupiter-Neptune-Chiron conjunction, you are urged to dig deep into your dreams to align your will, actions and energy with your aspirations and ideals. Just as important, it may be necessary to discover what has been blocking you from doing this up to now. For example: a hot temper that overreacts too easily; or holding your anger inside and becoming stuck in depression or cynicism; or feeling you could never live up to the perfection of your ideals so you can't quite get started; or struggling to find creative and fulfilling ways to express yourself while also learning not to focus on ego attachments.

Mars finally catches up to this current trio on Jun.04 (Neptune) and Jun.08 (Chiron). And by the time Mars catches up to its opposition to Jupiter on Aug.04, Jupiter is conjunct Uranus in Aries and Mars conjoins Saturn. At that time, Mars becomes part of a very powerful T-square aspect figure (Saturn opposite Uranus, squared by Pluto). This implies that the work you do with Mars from November through January will have dramatic and far reaching implications by the middle of 2010. 

Oct.20 – Mercury trine Jupiter (17:15 of Libra/Aquarius) (Oct.21 in AU)

This transit can make you quite talkative and flooded with ideas, along with those around you. Your stream of consciousness can flow abundantly with optimism and visionary possibilities. Write down your best ideas for later development, since you may be having too much fun now playing with ideas to want to stop and make them manifest just yet. Your outlook is usually optimistic and open-minded under this transit, although it might simply neutralize an already pessimistic frame of mind. You are likely to be more open to spiritual or philosophical perspectives, being more able to see yourself as part of something greater than yourself. You might even find that luck comes your way because you are more receptive to opportunities and possibilities. 

Oct.23 – Mercury trine Chiron (21:15 of Libra/Aquarius)

Your mental focus and communication now get an injection of healing energy. Cynicism and depression may soften now, as you become more receptive to a more optimistic viewpoint. If you have been caught up in escapism or "stinkin' thinkin'" (thinking you're more in control of your impulses than you really are), you may now find some relief and healing. Mental argument and critical "self-talk" can now find some reconciliation and acceptance that brings some peace of mind. You have increased ability to find the right words and understanding to help others with their problems. Compassion and empathy may be more accessible because you can identify your own experiences with what you see in others. You might also find someone who can give you good advice or support about your own problems – possibly a teacher or mentor – or you could become this to someone else. 

Oct.23 – Sun enters Scorpio (until Nov.21)

Happy Solar Return to all Scorpios! While the Sun is in Scorpio, we all get to explore our passions and probe the secrets within our depths. There is an intensity to the Scorpio experience that goes right to the core, and Scorpio challenges you to take a closer look at how that intensity manifests in your psyche. What are you passionate about and what fires up that passion? What events and experiences have brought you to "rock bottom" and then turned the tide to rejuvenate you back to a new lease on life? What people, causes, beliefs or physical things are so important to you that you would even risk death for? What secrets do you harbour inside, even from yourself? Posing these hypothetical questions doesn't mean you'll bring it on! But doing so can help you tap into the Scorpio experience to understand better how you experience transformation and touch the deepest heart of life itself. The danger is in becoming so obsessed with your passion that you neglect the practical realities. Or, you could become stuck in the "dark side" of transformation and letting go of the old, that you forget that figurative death and transformation are meant to lead into rebirth in order to complete the cycle. During this time, celebrate the endings in your life. Honour the hard times when you have had to face painful losses. And take passionate pleasure in the things that pull you out of your routines and make you feel alive. In some way, they have all allowed you to survive, thrive and grow. 

Oct.24 – Sun sextile Pluto (01:07 of Scorpio/Capricorn)

Your sense of purpose is potentially strong now, being able to tap into a deeper level of energy and determination. Your personality may be more forceful now, which can be great if you need to make a strong impression but perhaps not so much in situations requiring delicacy or subtlety. You have greater ability to see below the surface of things now, although it may not be as easy to put it all together and understand what it all means. It can be possible to unearth secrets or get at the core of unconscious patterns (yours and others'). However, you'll have to work to harvest the fruit of these potentials, and some of the insights and benefits may not become apparent until later. 

Oct.24 – Mercury trine Neptune (23:43 of Libra/Aquarius) (Oct.25 in AU)

Your mind is very open to imagination, dreams and compassion under this transit. This can be a very creative time, when ideas flow like a magical river. It can also be easy to get caught up in yearning and fantasizing about your hidden wishes, although it is possible to channel this into creative expression. (e.g., writing poetry, dancing, wistful music, singing in the shower, whatever!) Listening sympathetically to others' problems may come easily now, and you are more likely to get a compassionate response from others about your own problems. However, it may also be difficult to draw clear and firm boundaries with others, since you are more susceptible to the emotional gravity of others. It is ultimately a time for optimism, hope, creativity and intuition, although it's wise to keep at least one foot on the ground. 

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Oct.25 – Standard Time begins in UK, Europe and Middle East

The UK and many countries in Europe, the Middle East and the Near-East end daylight savings time and resume standard time on this date. That means you turn your clocks BACK AN HOUR. Some variations apply, so please check the date and time of time zone changes in your country

Oct.28 – Mercury enters Scorpio (until Nov.15)

Cunning communication and insight are at their peak, as Mercury skulks through Scorpio. It’s a time for unearthing secrets and delving deeply into the psychological Shadow (Carl Jung’s term for the unconscious parts of ourselves that we don't want to or know how to face). There is opportunity for healing and grounding now, but you may have to resist the temptation to manipulate others to control that process. Your awareness of the undercurrents around you could be increased...or you might stir up those undercurrents in others without intending to, by blurting things out in a blunt or harsh way. This transit presents an opportunity to learn new ways to wield words with the skill of a surgeon - to heal and remove what is toxic, not to wound or retaliate. Use it wisely. If you are not crystal clear with yourself about your motives and feelings when communicating with others, your unconscious or hidden agendas could seep through and cause hurt when that was not your intention. 

Oct.28 – Venus trine Jupiter (17:35 of Libra/Aquarius) (Oct.29 in UK, AU)

Your luck and opportunity to attract money, love, resources and self-esteem are high right now. The flow of attraction (whether that is magnetizing people, things or opportunities) is riding a strong current right now. You could find it easier than usual to get the resources and abundance for whatever you need right now. On the other hand, "your eyes may be bigger than your stomach" (as mother used to say), meaning your desire may magnify your sense of need beyond what is wise. You may be tempted to spend, flirt or bluff your way through situations, preferring to ignore or avoid hardship, boundaries or drudgery. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but be careful you don't get your hopes up so high that you set yourself up for disappointment or make promises you can't keep. It's probably wise to balance this easy flowing energy with some discretion and good judgement. 

Oct.28 – Mercury sextile Pluto (01:14 of Scorpio/Capricorn) (Oct.29 in UK, AU)

Penetrating insights and passionate communication are possible under this transit ...although, so is speaking more forcefully than you intend to about things that require a bit of delicacy or discretion. It is also a time when your mental concentration can come together so easily that you become obsessed. You may prefer in-depth discussion to small-talk, and it might feel awkward if you aren't able to explore the depths in your interaction or communication with others. However, you likely have an increased ability to pick up on undercurrents of what's happening around you. This is also a time when you can start to shed and leave behind old worn out perceptions and ways of communicating. You also have an increased ability to take thoughts, ideas and information and transform them into something healing ...or wounding. Choose your words carefully and mindfully. Writing down your thoughts and ideas to capture the energy of this transit can help you gather the deeper qualities. 

Oct.28-Nov.03 – Arrowhead aspect pattern ("What's an Arrowhead?"  "What's an aspect pattern?")

Arrowhead aspect pattern

During this time, the Sun-Mercury conjunction (exact on Nov.05) is in square aspect (90°) to Mars (exact Oct.29 and Nov.01), and both are in sesquiquadrate aspect (135°) to Uranus. Collectively, this aspect pattern can fire you out of a cannon and into action. At its best, you can find the courage and purpose to break out of old patterns that have held you back from making progress in your life. At its worst, you could become erratic, unstable, impulsive and over-reactive. Whatever its effects in your life, it is likely to come into sharper focus on Oct.29-30 when the Moon conjoins Uranus. To get the most out of this aspect configuration, listen to your impulses as your spirit trying to send you a message. That doesn't necessarily mean your best response is to act on those impulses – part of the challenge of this energy is to decide whether your impulses are really the inner wisdom of spontaneous intuition or a camouflaged projection of emotional reactions. 

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Oct.29 – Sun square Mars (06:02 of Scorpio/Leo)

Assertiveness, aggression and intense energy burst out under 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 conflict and putting you on edge. You may feel the impulse to burn off this excess energy through sexual 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 act. The more preplanning you've done for this moment, the more successful you're likely to be. But if you get caught in a whirlwind of change, connect yourself to the part of you that wants change and let that ground and guide you. 

Oct.29 – Saturn enters Libra (until Apr.07.2010 and Jul.21.2010 to Oct.05.2012) (Oct.30 in AU)

From now until 2012, Saturn moves through the Air sign of Libra. Saturn develops, manifests and structures whatever it encounters. In Libra, these actions are applied to fairness, balance, relationships, partnerships and objective reflection. Although Saturn often has a reputation for being a wet blanket over whatever it touches, it is actually very comfortable in Libra and said to be "exalted" – think of it like being a guest of honour. Saturn is therefore capable of bringing calm rationality to a situation requiring fairness, or stability to the need for balance, or lasting commitment to relationships.

But of course, Saturn is still Saturn and it still has its difficult side. That calm rationality for fairness could also seem like cold objectivity in which there is no room for human emotion or shortcomings. The stability it brings to harmony and balance could tend to eliminate the highs and lows that make life interesting, exciting and engaging. And commitment in a relationship doesn't guarantee the relationship will work, so it's wise to carefully consider what and whom you're committing yourself to.

If you were born roughly between 1921-24, 1950-53 or 1980-83, you were probably born under Saturn in Libra. That means two things: (1) you live with this energy all the time and (2) you will be going to go through a Saturn Return sometime in the next two years. Saturn Return is when Saturn returns to the same sign and degree as it was when you were born. It is a pivotal time of life that happens about every 29 years. It is a powerful rite of passage that initiates a process of restructuring of your life and challenges you to redefine and reinvent who you are.

If you were born roughly between 1908-1911, 1937-40, 1967-69 or 1996-99, you were probably born while Saturn was in the opposite sign of Aries. That means you will be going through the Saturn Opposition sometime in the next two years. Saturn Opposition is when Saturn reaches the opposite sign of the zodiac from where it was when you were born. It represents a time when the changes that began at the Saturn Return start to emerge and crystallize, and you shift from developing a new life to actually living it and making it work.

If you are going through either of these major transits over the next two years, you will benefit enormously by getting a reading with your astrologer. Your astrologer can help you discover how this time of transition is unfolding in your life and how best to steer your course so that you get the most out of this crucial turning point in your life. 

Oct.31 – Chiron stationary Direct (21:13 of Aquarius) ("What's a Station?"  Read more about Stations.  Read more about Retrogrades.)

For up to a week before and after this date, you may feel a bit like you're caught between worlds—the spiritual versus the physical, the mental versus the emotional, or the outer objective world versus your inner subjective experience. Chiron has been retrograde since May.30, giving us time to assess the places in our lives that need healing and to discover the ways that we might be wounding ourselves or others. This includes physical health issues, emotional vulnerability and mental perspectives that create more problems than they solve. As Chiron turns direct, everything we have learned over the last five months becomes ready to be applied over the coming three months (while Chiron is still in the Shadow). Right now, you might find you reach a decision or turning point about issues you have wrestled with since May concerning goals, career, expectations or authority. If these issues have been stressful, this might come out now in the form of health problems, so it's a good idea to be gentle yet disciplined with yourself in this area. It could be a time of ambiguity, feeling like you're caught in a whirlpool that mixes up possibilities with limitations. Or, you might experience some clarity, as the paradoxical coexistence of realities and potentials on the path before you come into clearer focus. Either way, it is a time that can be magical because of its ability to bridge the gap between what is and what might be. 

Oct.31 – Venus trine Chiron (21:13 of Libra/Aquarius) (Nov.01 in AU)

Healing and rebalancing are possible now, especially in the areas of relationships, finance, resources and values. Any problems that have persisted in these areas lately could benefit from an influx of helpful and healing resources now. Relationships and interactions of all kinds can benefit now, since it can be easier to see the beauty and value in others whom you might usually dislike or feel ill at ease with (or they with you). Negotiations and strategic efforts to resolve conflicts may go smoothly now, especially when you balance the results in everyone's interests. You may also be able to attract what you need to heal your wounds (physical, psychological, spiritual, etc.). Like it says in the "Serenity Prayer," you may now find it a bit easier to accept that which you cannot change, while finding you make progress with the things you can. 

Nov.01 – Standard Time begins in Canada, USA (until Mar.14.2010)

Most areas of Canada and the US (and some other areas of the world) turn their clocks BACK ONE HOUR. Check your region or country. 

Nov.01 – Mercury direct square Mars (07:39 of Scorpio/Leo) (Nov.02 in UK, AU)

Fiery speech, argument and hot debate characterise this transit. This could come in the form of conflict, or it might be stimulating and challenging – or both! One thing to watch out for is that you may have a short fuse for a temper, and the same may be true for others around you. It can be a time when you blurt out things you later regret, or you might finally find the courage to do something that's long overdue. The problem is that one can easily look like the other, and what feels like courage in the moment might look more like reckless haste in retrospect. Harsh words can't always be taken back, so keep a grip on your objectivity and better judgment while you're verbally fighting the dragons. Use this energy to stoke your motivational fires, and use your ideas to generate positive action. It can help to pace your mental energy like racing a horse, which can harness abundant energy to fuel your decisions, courage and resolve.

This is the last of three passes of this transit during the recent Mercury retrograde cycle: Aug.25, Sep.03 and Nov.01. You might have felt short on temper during this process, or lightning fast perceptions. Or, perhaps you've been unable to hold back your thoughts which instead come tumbling out of your mouth before you have a chance to decide whether it's wise to say them out loud. Or, you might have been motivated to take new action and you've been wrestling with figuring out how to make it all happen. By now, your process of change is in the conclusion phase. It's time to take action, make a decision, change direction, resist changing direction, or whatever conclusion your growth process has brought you to. 

 

Sabian Symbol Taurus 11: A woman sprinkling flowers

Sabian Symbol for the
Full Moon in Taurus

Taurus 11

A woman sprinkling flowers.

This Sabian Symbol ("What's a Sabian Symbol?") shows a very Taurus theme – growing things in the earth.

As Blain Bovee observes, this involves a "sprinkling" of water; somewhere in the middle between drought and deluge. "Too much water is as bad as not enough." (The Sabian Symbols: The Original Symbols Fully Revealed)

This seems to echo the current Saturn in Libra, where a balance is needed for best results.

Water is as necessary for planets to grow and blossom as air is for us to breathe. Water fuels the change that is growth. This is like Mars in the T-square of the Full Moon chart, which provides the impetus and motivation for sustained growth.

The message of this symbol is to find the right balance between activity and relaxation, growth and rest, change and stability, pressure and patience. Tip the balance too far in one or the other direction and you will disrupt both sides.

Keep the balance within the optimal zone and your life can blossom like a beautiful garden.

 

Find out more about the Sabian Symbols in these recommended books:

An Astrological Mandala,
by Dane Rudhyar

The Sabian Symbols: The Original Symbols Fully Revealed,
by Blain Bovee

The Sabian Symbols in Astrology,
by Marc Edmund Jones

Nov.02 – FULL MOON in TAURUS (10:30 of Taurus)

FULL MOON in TAURUS

Ottawa, Canada and
Washington DC, USA:

Nov.02 2:14 PM EST

London, UK:

Nov.02,7:14 PM GMT

Sydney, AU:

Nov.03, 6:14 AM AEST

"What's a Full Moon?"

Read more about the Sun-Moon cycles.

Read more about how you experience TAURUS energy in your life.

Share |

Taurus is known for its adoration of sensual delights and a bit of an obsession with accumulating material wealth. A Taurus would probably say, "Hey, without money and what it can buy, you couldn't survive so what's yer point?" The point is that every sign has its unhealthy extremes – even gentle, lovable, cuddly Taurus.

We all have Taurus somewhere in our charts, and when there's a New Moon or Full Moon in Taurus, that is our cue to learn about and embrace our Taurus nature. As an archetype (energy essence or prototype), Taurus takes the Aries Fire (life force, enthusiasm, motivation, action) and stabilizes it in a sustainable, enduring form. Without this, Aries energy would be a mere flash that quickly burns itself out. Taurus provides the substance or fuel that keeps the Fire burning. Ideally we need a balance of Aries and Taurus – too much fire and the substance burns up too quickly; too much substance and the fire becomes suffocated and dies.

Your Taurus nature can be incredibly stubborn, but remember that nothing is ever all good or all bad. Its element is Earth, which is sensible, down to earth, factual, practical and hard-working. That in itself might seem a bit severe or oppressive to someone who thrives on imagination, speculation or intuition. But when you need endurance, persistence, steadfastness or loyalty, that Taurus stubbornness can be your best friend.

Ironically, Taurus has the reputation for being both lazy and a workaholic. How does that work? Taurus is a Fixed sign, meaning that it's a bit like the physical principle of inertia – its natural mode is to remain in whatever state it is in. If Taurus is active, it will tend to stay active—for example, Taurus' tendency to be a workaholic. If a Fixed sign is at rest, it prefers to stay at rest—for example, Taurus' reputation for laziness.

In the same way, the Taurus part of you (regardless what sign you were born under) enjoys sinking your teeth into a project or activity and sticking with it – and it's also the part of you that would rather stay on the couch after dinner watching TV than get up and do the dishes. It's the part of you that can coast along on "automatic pilot" when you get into the rhythm of whatever you're doing, whether that's basking in the pleasure of a relaxing hot tub or grooving to the rhythmic inertia of perpetual motion.

Yet, the only true constant is change. We constantly have to switch from activity to rest and from rest into action. So what motivates you to change from one state to the other? This is the question that seems to be asked by the current Full Moon in Taurus.

T-square aspect pattern: Sun opp Moon sqr Mars

There is a T-square aspect pattern at the time of the Full Moon, in which the Sun and Moon are both in square aspect (90°) to Mars. All of them are in Fixed signs: Sun in Scorpio, Moon in Taurus and Mars in Leo. Although Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune are in the other Fixed sign, Aquarius, they are not strictly within orb of the square aspect. Jupiter forms a wide square aspect to the Sun and Moon, but is a bit too far off to form an opposition to Mars.

This Full Moon is dense with Fixed energy! That can mean you are stuck in couch potato mode, or you might be stuck in workaholic mode. Since Taurus is a literally physical energy, your body might be telling you to take a break (e.g. if you have one of these awful flues that are going around). If you have been trying to pump up your energy to launch a project or get some work done, this high amount of Fixed energy could help you by giving you the staying power you need. On the other hand, if you're not able to achieve "lift-off," that same Fixed energy could make it feel like you're struggling to climb up a down escalator.

The Taurus Full Moon wants to increase the pleasure in your life. How you shift from one state into the other can be motivated by the enjoyment you expect to get from whatever you're intending to do. For instance, if you've been working hard and you need to take a break (or you're being forced to do that through circumstances, health, etc.), it can help to give yourself permission to anticipate how good it will feel to finally relax. Maybe it will give you more time with your family, or time to veg out and watch some TV, or catch up on your reading, knitting, quilting, etc. Or, if you're trying to get yourself pumped up to start a project, to finish your chores or to capitalize on your potential, Taurus will encourage you to focus on what you'll get out of this. What abundance, resources, "currency" or prosperity are you aiming for? Affirmations that give you the inner experience of already having these things may help you get past blocks, resistance or a negative mindset.

Mars in Leo, being at the apex of the T-square, can provide the key to igniting your motivation. Leo is the sign of identity, purpose, creativity and fun. To get that Mars in Leo cranked up and into motion, it helps to get clear about who you are and how your intended action will either express or strengthen who you are. Why do you want to do your intended action? What is its purpose in your life? How could you make it a joyful expression of your life force?

How you access and explore that Mars motivation can be influenced by your natal chart. For example, if you were born in the early to mid 1940s, that Mars is conjunct your natal Pluto. This suggests you could find motivation by focusing on the transformative potential in what you are trying to do.

Astrology - a light in the darkness

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If you were born in 1917-18, 1946 or 1976-77, Mars is probably conjunct your natal Saturn (as well as natal Pluto, in the case of 1946). This could mean your motivational fire can be stoked by being well-prepared and plan your movements according to the results you want to achieve—or it might even be advising you to reconsider whether your intended action is in your best interests right now. If you were born in 1941-42 or 1991-92, Mars could be on your natal Chiron (as well as natal Pluto in the case of 1941-42). This could indicate you need to be proactive in your own healing, or you might benefit by confronting the ways that you self-sabotage your efforts.

If you were born in 1956-58, that Mars is conjunct your natal Uranus. Your motivation might best be found through spontaneity or by trying something new that is outside of your usual comfort zone. If you were born in 1919-20, 1931-32, 1943, 1955, 1966-67, 1978-79 or 1990-91, Mars could be conjunct your natal Jupiter. In this case, your motivation could be found in optimism, confidence or by increasing your knowledge or understanding of what you're trying to do. If you were born in 1917-21, Mars is on your natal Neptune (and also conjunct natal Saturn, in the case of 1917-18), in which case you could find motivation through inspiration, meditation, dreams or visualization.

And if you're a Leo who was born around Jul.26 to Aug.04 (of any year), then Mars is conjunct your natal Sun. You would likely benefit from physical movement, or by focusing on what makes your intention fun, an expression of your individuality or a celebration of life.

The Saturn-Pluto square (90°) is also an important part of this motivational challenge, even though it is not strongly wired into the rest of the Full Moon chart just yet. These two planets are both forces to be reckoned with! Saturn's authority and discipline square off with Pluto's power and transformation. These energies could battle it out for control over the other, or they could develop a mutual respect as equals and combine forces against a mutual enemy. On a more personal level, this can be a call to develop increased discipline and productivity by allowing yourself to be transformed by the necessity of circumstances (and perhaps initiated by discovering the ways you are lacking in these qualities).

To discover more about how the Full Moon in Taurus, the Saturn-Pluto square, the Jupiter-Chiron-Neptune conjunction and other current transits are influencing your life, you need to get a personal astrology reading. Find out more...

Nov.02 – Venus trine Neptune (23:41 of Libra/Aquarius) (Nov.03 in AU)

This can be a time of romance, creativity, and a sense of oneness with the natural beauty of all that exists in the world. On a social or intimate level, things may run smoothly – even a bit magically! So be sure you are clear about what you really want. In terms of finances and material worth, this can be a time of blessings and abundance that could seem to appear out of nowhere. But be careful – it can also be a time of overspending and wondering where the money went! Your natural beauty and warmth shines through now, so it is a good time to peek out from behind any faηade of glamour or illusion you might be cloaked in. You are likely to see the very best in others (and they in you), so that negotiation, interaction and attraction can seem to flow effortlessly. This magical attraction energy could also open you up to seeing wonderful qualities in others that may or may not actually be there, so do a reality check with a trusted friend before you make any important choices.

Nov.04 – Neptune stationary Direct (23:41 of Aquarius) (Nov.05 in AU) ("What's a Station?"  Read more about Stations.  Read more about Retrogrades.)

Neptune now turns direct, after being retrograde since May.22. For up to a week before and after this date, you might feel a bit dreamy, disconnected, depressed, sluggish or scatter-brained. The Neptune energy takes you into a non-rational, intuitive place and can stir up feelings and issues from the unconscious. Vivid dreams could give you insight into situations you have been wrestling with, and your intuitive sensitivity might seem to come out of nowhere. Or you might experience the opposite—your dreams elude you and you feel cut off from your usual intuitive sense. What is happening is that your "right-brain" (intuitive, creative, non-rational, faith-oriented) is passing the torch to your "left-brain" (rational, logical, linear, practical), and you can get caught in the whirlpool of transition. Try not to control the process, but allow it to carry you and point you in a different direction. The learning you have gathered over the last five months or so—related to spirituality, longing, inspiration, creativity, imagination, fantasy, divination and intuition—can now start to be applied more directly in your life over the next few months. It may be possible to channel your experience into a creative form—possibly artistic, but definitely creating something new out of what has been, which can ultimately be healing and uplifting.

Nov.05 – Sun conjunct Mercury (13:02 of Scorpio)

During this transit, your sense of self and purpose can become merged with what you think, perceive and say. On one hand, this can make for an easy flow of ideas and communication from inside your brain to the external world. It can also increase your perceptions and observations of the world, as you file it all away in your internal database. On the other hand, you may find yourself a bit tongue-tied, as it could be hard to separate your sense of self from your perceptions and ideas enough to find the words to adequately express them. In that case, just observe and go with the flow; the words will come later. It can also be a time when it's not easy to be objective, especially about yourself and how you bring yourself to the world around you. It's like your Being automatically expresses and sets into motion the things you think, perceive and want to say. This can help you to feel like your sense of self is shining effortlessly, but if your thoughts and perceptions are in conflict with other parts of you (e.g., emotions, needs, objectivity) then it might become a time when you act a little too quickly with blinders on. Strive for balance and self-honesty before you act.

Nov.07 – Venus enters Scorpio (until Dec.01) (Nov.08 in UK, AU)

Venus is the planet of relationships, interaction, beauty, pleasure and material resources. She struts through Scorpio with attitude! As a result, we may experience sensuality, sexuality and intimacy in a more intense, in-your-face kind of way. You might feel the need to establish a better balance of power with others that is pleasant and even-handed on the surface but also deals with the more gritty or intense energy that tends to lurk under the surface. It may be easier to attract what (or who) you want now, by focusing your intent and interest on the object of your affection and desire. However, there can also be a danger of becoming manipulative, controlling or devious to get what you want. Strive to become centred in your deepest heart's desire through steadfast self-honesty. Aim to avoid becoming obsessed with power, wealth or lust so that you lose sight of your true light inside. This is a good transit to take joy in your instinctive nature.

Nov.07-Jan.02 – Mars opposite Jupiter-Chiron-Neptune (in Leo/Aquarius)

Mars travels in opposition to these planets from early November to early January, although this aspect actually does not become exact until August 2010. Mars slows down and goes retrograde on Dec.20 before it reaches the exact opposition to Jupiter. After Mars retreats back through Leo, it doesn't catch up to Jupiter until Aug.04.2010. During this first approach, Mars reaches its closest point to the opposition on Dec.05-06 at a 3:15 orb.

What does it all mean? It adds an interesting spin to the Mars retrograde cycle, for one thing.

Nov.08 – Mercury square Jupiter (18:18 of Scorpio/Aquarius) (Nov.09 in AU)

You may be seeing the weak links in your knowledge, understanding or beliefs right now. Your ideas and words might seem to fall short of what your mind envisions, or you might be unable to convince others of your point of view. As a result, it can be tempting to over-compensate with more self-confidence, faith or optimism than you actually have. Or, you might give out "too much information" by over-explaining or through nervous rambling. Alternatively, you might encounter someone else who does this and perhaps have a blaming or judgmental reaction to them. This is an opportunity to learn something about how you might jump to conclusions or blame, possibly triggered by a situation that challenges your beliefs, opinions or perspective. To learn more about this part of yourself, try taking some time to think about what is really bothering you or what you really need to say in that situation. There may be a higher truth to be found if you open your mind to something you're reluctant to acknowledge, rather than looking for a "final truth" around which to close it.

Nov.09 – Venus sextile Pluto (01:31 of Scorpio/Capricorn)

Close one-on-one relationships with people (close friends, lovers, partners of all kinds) could possibly benefit by being taken to a deeper level now, through creatively combining balanced harmony with deep connection. Just be careful that intimacy and bonding don't go over the top into obsession or domination. There is a brief opportunity now to become more authentic in how you relate to those close to you and how you establish a balance of power with them. The trick is to do this without trying to suppress, control or overpower the other person's interests. Financially, it is a time when you may have an opportunity to profit in your dealings with banks, insurance companies, taxes, and other institutions that deal with collective money.

Nov.10 – Mercury square Chiron (21:16 of Scorpio/Aquarius)

Your mental focus and perceptions may feel a bit strained right now. You could find yourself locked in a struggle of indecision that stems from a "glass half empty" versus "glass half full" dilemma. It may be difficult to stay objective and evenly balanced in your perspective, but by working with this you could also find a new mental focus that gives you increased clarity. It might be tempting to sink into cynicism as a way to deal with what seems like a no-win situation. On the other hand, this transit could bring your mental perspective to a kind of "healing crisis" that forces you to get a better grip on the ideas, communication and frame of mind that have been problematic for you. Instead of reaching for extremes (hoping this will clarify the path in front of you), it will help more if you can take a few steps back to allow all the conflicting and out-of-sync elements to coexist together – creative paradox. If you have been in denial about something, this could be a turning point that allows you to grapple with the complex reality of your situation.

The Future Minders

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Nov.10 – Sun square Jupiter (18:30 of Scorpio/Aquarius) (Nov.11 in AU)

You may be inspired to expand far beyond your usual boundaries during this time, although this may or may not work in the way you hope it will. It can be a time of challenge, when you decide that now is the time to move beyond your current horizons and make the ultimate push for something you believe will bring you happiness, fulfilment and prosperity. How successful you are will probably depend on how prepared you are for what comes next. Your judgment and your ability to see things objectively and realistically can be a little "off" during this transit, since your hopes and ideals might distort what is actually possible. It can be easy to overestimate the envisioned results, or you might underestimate the amount of work necessary to sustain your dream and prevent it from being just a flash in the pan. Try to avoid being overconfident and making promises you can't keep (including to yourself).

Nov.11 – Mercury trine Uranus (22:52 of Scorpio/Pisces)

Unusual ideas, flashes of insight and seeing unexpected possibilities are all part of this transit. You may find it easier to be open-minded right now, especially about insights that have eluded you. Your ability to see beyond your usual horizon of perception can bring visionary brainwaves, as well as a fun sense of humour. You might be inspired to experiment with something new or do something out of character. You might have an impulse to break free of old habits or constraints. This can be a very liberating transit that opens your mind to new possibilities and ideas. However, be careful that you don't become so liberated and spontaneous that you become erratic, hyper or reckless. Words may come tumbling out of your mouth before you've had a chance to consider their wisdom, or you might find yourself talking non-stop and interrupting, creating a bit of awkwardness in those around you. On the other hand, you might also find the clarity and vision that gives you the words to speak your truth with new conviction. It's a great time to do some writing or other form of self-expression, especially if it's spontaneous or involving technology.

Nov.11 – Mercury square Neptune (23:42 of Scorpio/Aquarius) (Nov.12 in AU)

Your mental focus may be a bit clouded, confused or lethargic right now, as your conscious mind struggles to grasp the formless, limitless expanse of the Universe and the unconscious. You may experience some disillusionment or disappointment, in your observations or communication with others. However, what is flowing under the surface of events right now is the need to dissolve away the crust of old expectations that blocks your view from seeing a greater Truth. If you're feeling off-balance, try to listen more than you talk, so that you can be receptive to your inner sensitivity. Left-brain analysis might be difficult to work with right now unless you balance it with a lot of right-brain intuition. You may have to let go of a rigid mindset, or give up what you think you understand about a situation in your life, in order to open yourself to a new perspective that is difficult to define but is ultimately in the best interest of your spiritual growth.

Nov.13 – Sun square Chiron (21:18 of Scorpio/Aquarius) (Nov.14 in AU)

Your self-confidence and patience may be a bit strained right now, stretched by the urge to break free of chronic constraints. Motivation and self-esteem may seem to sag and suffer from old problems that you thought were resolved. This is probably because you are seeing "the flaws in the system" that are preventing you from getting the results you want. It will help to take a fresh approach to your situation. You may need to let go of what you think the results "should be" or how they should come to you. Be open to getting what you want in a different form than you were expecting. You may have to work extra hard for results now, especially if it means having to find a different route to success. If it seems like a door of opportunity has closed, look for an unexpected advantage or hidden alternative. This could allow you to tap into other opportunities that wouldn't have been possible otherwise.

Nov.14 – Sun trine Uranus (22:49 of Scorpio/Pisces) (Nov.15 in UK, AU)

You are more open than usual to spontaneity, surprises and "flying by the seat of your pants!" Your sense of humour and fun are let loose during this transit, as is your ability to break out of old outworn habits. You may get a flash of insight, a burst of courage or a surge of inspiration under this transit. The spirit of who you are can become released now, possibly leading to you behaving a bit "out of character." 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 good to be careful not to be too reckless under this transit. If your self-confidence, self-expression or self-esteem have been stifled or dampened lately, these could come flying out rather erratically, carelessly or chaotically. Strive to have fun pushing the envelope without ripping it. ;-)

Nov.15 – Saturn square Pluto (01:42 of Libra/Capricorn) (Nov.16 in AU)

The planet of structure, authority and responsibility (Saturn) squares off with the planet of power, purging and transformation (Pluto). This is part of a much larger cycle that evolves over 38 years and began in 1982. In more immediate terms, this transit challenges you to examine how effectively you are working with discipline, responsibility, leadership and authority – your own or others – and discover how you can transform these areas to support your growth, maturity and personal development. Both of these planets are associated with endings, so this could be a time when circumstances force you to let go of the ineffective or outmoded ways you have been dealing with authority, power and control. These planets are also about mastery – developing your ability to own your personal power, be your own authority and be self-sufficient. Do you have a tendency to project power, control and decisions onto others? (e.g. authority figures) Does your fear of powerlessness get projected onto others in the form of resentment or jealousy of (what you believe is) their power to make decisions over you? Or perhaps you are the one who must make or influence the decisions of others, and you feel reluctant to take on that kind of responsibility? This is a time when you may need to delve deeply into the ways that you handle or react to power and authority. This challenge may come to you in the form of a conflict or struggle that shows you where and how you need to take the next step in your evolutionary growth.

Nov.15 – Sun square Neptune (23:43 of Scorpio/Aquarius) (Nov.16 in AU)

Your ideals, hopes and wishful thinking may loom a little too large during this time, making you prone to disappointment and disillusionment. You might want a fantasy or dream to come true so much that you disconnect from the reality that seems to be in the way – only to find that the obstacle was serving a positive purpose after all. Your imagination may be very active now, but not easy to control or balance with reality. However, it can be a very creative time if you're able to harness that imagination for productive use. Unconscious urges and longings may be especially close to the surface, so you have an opportunity to learn more about the hidden forces that drive you (and perhaps distort your view of the world around you). Spiritually, you might discover that your yearning for enlightenment is not the straightforward path you had hoped for, but it can be just as valuable (although disappointing) to discover what is *not* your best path. Emotionally you may feel a bit overwhelmed, discouraged or confused. On the plus side, you have an opportunity to observe a deeper part of you, which is usually camouflaged against the distracting background of day-to-day life. There is tremendous creative, spiritual and healing potential to be found by listening to and working with the inner voices from those depths.

Nov.15 – Mercury enters Sagittarius (until Dec.05) (Nov.16 in UK, AU)

Communication, ideas, thoughts and perceptual "spark" become expanded in Sagittarius. Your mental focus tends toward a philosophical and spiritual outlook that seeks the highest truth in the broadest context. However, it's not always easy for the conscious mind to assimilate and digest such a vast territory of knowledge, or to find the higher meaning in mountains of raw information. You might feel a bit overwhelmed by trying to take in such a panoramic view of your world, but the gifts from doing so are abundant and inspiring! To get the most out of this transit, try learning something new that expands your horizon. Or pick a situation in your life and imagine that you're looking at it from a mountaintop – what do you see from way up there that you can't see when you're closer to the ground? Just remember that whatever visions and insights you get from doing this, these are SOME of the truths to be found, but not necessarily the only truth. Leave room in your new understanding to remember that every mountaintop shows a slightly different view and that this doesn't make one mountain right and the others wrong.

Next Update:  NEW MOON in SCORPIO - November 16, 2009 (Nov.17 in AU). Available by Nov.16.

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