Welcome, friends, to a most auspicious Mercury retrograde. Not all Mercury retrogrades are equal or even alike. The Mercury retrograde this past summer that joined the eclipse points was a difficult and intense time for many of us. This Mercury retrograde is vastly different. For one thing, no eclipses. It is aligned with Saturn that helps us bring things into focus. It supports grounding and realistic thinking. Mercury retrograde is often a great time to change a habit and this one is especially good for changing a long established pattern. That it begins with a Full Moon helps us see what is truly our path, at least for the next month. In these few days, take a moment to set an intention for what you want to see happen in your life and in the world. The alignment right now of Mercury and Saturn with the Galactic Center helps us see what is true and what the big picture of our life is. Get beyond the fear and take a risk to be true to a larger vision.
The first week of the Mercury retrograde is the most challenging. When Mercury moves back into Scorpio on December 10th, it joins Venus who is in a Parivatna Yoga with Mars, and with Mars joined to Jupiter, this creates a very auspicious support for well-being and harmony in our relationships.
Mars has just moved into Libra joining Jupiter and moving into a Parivatna Yoga with Venus. These are auspicious and helpful aspects in astrology. Good for joy in relationships. Supportive of creativity, wisdom and hope. Something becomes possible that has felt very difficult since the summer eclipses.
During the summer, I think the Dragon spirit (Nodes of the Moon) opened it's mouth and set fire to an embedded pattern of oppression in the world soul. For the past few months with Mercury and Mars in contentious places to each other, it has been easy to start fights. For those who have woke up and taken a strong stance against abuse, the fire may have blown back on them a bit. When Mercury retrogrades back into Scorpio, we have a chance to align in a better way with healing and support for those speaking out. This genie is not going back in the bottle.
The Eclipse on January 31st is a powerful eclipse for world change. The revolution begins. Another firestorm is released. When Mars stations in June 2018, it stations at the Jan 31st eclipse point. An event that seems random and completely out of anyone's hands erupts in January or early February. In June, actions are taken to rectify this event. The revolt that happens in the summer of 2018 may not appear successful in the short term, but it successfully sets up the parameters for the big change from 2026 to 2031. Creating a new economy is part of the vision change.
As we move out of Eclipse drama and trauma, we get to evaluate the wreckage of the past six weeks, personally and globally. If your house is still standing and your life is still in place, search within. Take a look at what you have let go of recently. What has been asked of you and how have you responded? We still have another week to dismantle any other stuck places. Take advantage of this last bit of clearing energy to clean house.
On September 20th, the New Moon ushers in a month of new beginnings--a time when we get to say Yes! to something that has been calling to us for quite some time. Big decisions will be made from September 20th through October and November. There is progress and forward movement during this autumn. Take advantage of this in your own life. Want to move? Do it. Ready for a different job? Pursue it. Take a stand. But this week, just clear the slate.
The Sade Satti is a 7 1/2 years time period when Saturn moves across the Moon. It begins when Saturn enters the house before our natal Moon and it ends when Saturn leaves the house after our natal Moon (Vedic astrology) or when Saturn conjuncts the Moon using a 45 degree orb (western astrology). It comes around every 29 1/2 years, so for a quarter of our lives we are in a Sade Satti. Most of us will get three of these. They are times that are often associated with loss and challenges. Dennis Flaherty talked about it as if it is the winter time of our lives. It is a time when the energy is focused in the roots. We may not see much flowering or growing, but something under the ground is transforming greatly.
Since I am at the end of my Sade Satti, I thought I would pass on what I learned.
1. Slow down.
There is no hurry, no rush, no race. Everything happens in its own time.
2. Loss happens.
The most natural things in life are birth and death, beginnings and endings. There is nothing to hold on to.
3. Don't push the river.
Anytime I felt like I was pushing, I was going in the wrong direction. Go to number 1 and wait til clarity arrives.
4. Deconstruction is good.
Allowing the pulling apart of constructs is ultimately a great adventure, a beneficial process and a joy. It is the release of that which has done its time. It is a clearing. It requires us to trust, not in ourselves or the world, but trust that there is a Great Intelligence in the Universe that is omnipresent and always working.
5. Solitude is essential.
The call into solitude during our Sade Satti is not to be ignored. Solitude will bang on your door til you answer. Answer as soon as you can and welcome the void.
6.Release all expectations.
Unlike in any other time in your life, expectations are likely to lead to disappointment. This is not a time for worldly growth unless it happens without our intervention or wishes. What brought joy was deepening into study, self-exploration and spiritual practice.
7. Things are rarely how them seem.
It was during my Sade Satti, after the death of both of my parents, that the great mysteris of my were unveiled. It was a time of peeling away the layers of deception and trauma.
In general, I wish I hadn't tried so hard to make everything okay. Sometimes, sitting in the dark and waiting would have been the best course of action. There are many factors that determine how our Sade Satti will be for us. Our relationship with Saturn, what houses it rules, what house it is in, is it a benefic or malefic for our chart, what dasha we are in, what transits we are in during the 7 1/2 year time, and where our moon is--are all factors in determining how our Sade Satte's will be. If we have a strong and beneficial Saturn, with a strong Lagna Lord and a bright Moon, we may have easy success and lots of great things happening in our Sade Satti. For me, Saturn is a strong malefic, I am in my Saturn dasha and Saturn is in my 12th house of loss. I got the loss part full on, but I have seen people sail through their Sade Satte.
For those of you who are in this time, one thing that supports us during the Sade Satte is listening to or chanting the Hanuman Chalisa. It is a long prayer which I tried to learn but haven't yet. Here is a link to Krishna Das' singing it.
May the pure light within guide you on.
2016 was colored by the effects of Saturn square Neptune, an aspect that requires the dissolving of a reality that has become stuck or stagnant. A retrograde Mars exacerbated this aspect in the spring and early summer of 2016. Jupiter made it all bigger. With Jupiter trining Pluto, power in the shadows had support and were able to get a foothold into the present experience of order that we had come to take for granted.
As we found the sands shifting under our feet, there was an opportunity to find a different kind of strength within ourselves that may have been hidden from us in the past. This strength, while hard to grasp or even recognize, will be something we can rely on through future transits.
November ushered in a wave of aspects that will be with us for much of 2017: Jupiter sextile Saturn (support for manifesting our life work in the world), Jupiter square Pluto (a crisis in leadership), Saturn trine Uranus (exciting changes and out-of-the-box opportunities to transform our lives), Jupiter opposite Uranus (changes that are blown out of proportion).
While these aspects will likely be dominant in our experience, they all happen frequently enough to not pique my interest that much. So here is what is getting my attention for 2017.
1. End of the Kala Sarpa Yoga time. From September 4, 2016 until December 27, 2016, we were in a particularly dark time on the planet. For two weeks at a time during that time we were often experiencing a Kala Sarpa Yoga, a yoga where all of the planets are between Rahu and Ketu on one side. Rahu and Ketu are the head and tail of the Dragon. When the Dragon swallows all of the planets it is very difficult to see our way and the path can be lost. As we emerge now from the dark time, we can see our path from the wreckage. Like standing in the rubble after a tornado, priorities become clear. We know what we have to do.
It's like while we were laying next the dragon not knowing what was going on (Sep - Dec 2016), the dragon regurgitated and spit up some mutant creature with little or no soul compass, which can happen when you are born during a Total Lunar Eclipse. It literally went dark in China while Donald was being born (it was night in China and the Full Moon disappeared). When the Sun conjuncts Rahu in a natal chart, political ambitions run strong, aka Bernie and Donald. Donald just ended a Rahu Dasa, which began 18 years ago. Rahu dashas bring on a desire to be part of the world. If you are born with Sun conjunct Rahu it is particularly a time of egoic pride and personal ambition. It ended a week after he was elected. Now he is in his Jupiter Dasha and for sure isn't interested in the job. Jupiter can bring in a time of expansion, entitlement and often for most of us learning, studying and wisdom. For Donald, it's all about money and some losses. Jupiter rules his 8th house of loss which may bring on some difficulties, lawsuits, deaths and attacks, but it also rules his 5th house of good stuff from past lives. With Jupiter being in his 2nd house, this is a classic signature for wealth and the Jupiter dasha will bring it on. Jupiter is somewhat of a Maraka (death) planet for Donald, but the Dasha lasts 16 years, so he may still have a good 15 years left. Not only that, but the poor guy is smack dab in the middle of his Sade Sati. This is the year that Saturn conjuncts his Moon and for anyone who has tracked this, it is one of the hardest years we have within a 29 year cycle. It often brings on loss and lessons. Since his moon is debilitated, it is particularly difficult--and the exact Saturn-Moon conjunctions are Dec 30, 2016 and then again when Saturn stations in late August (see the next section on eclipses).
2. Eclipses. We have super cool eclipses happening this year. Four of them, two in February and two in August. The August ones have my attention the most. On August 21st there is a Total Solar Eclipse whose path goes directly across the United States during the middle of the day. That means that every person in the continental U.S. will be able to experience at least the partial darkness of a Total Eclipse. Those in South Carolina, Tennessee, Missouri, Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho and Oregon where the path is most exact will get to experience almost total darkness. Eclipses are know for destabilizing our lives and the planet. Things get thrown up in the air and it is easy to feel like the sands beneath our feet are shifting. It is notable that the eclipse path goes over two earthquake prone areas--off the coast of Oregon and the Missouri fault line. Already, there is awakening and arising of power circumnavigating the Missouri River with the recent Standing Rock protests. I think someone or something is tuned into the eclipses coming that are particularly triggering of destabilization of Missouri. Often before a major earth event (hurricane, earthquake) there is revolt in the area. For example, there was a civil war in the Aceh region of Sumatra the year before a horrible tsunami struck. New Orleans had extraordinarily high murder rates the year before Katrina. That the protests were so well held, so peaceful and so effective (not that there isn't a lot of work still to be done), gives me great hope for a powerful, enlightening and peaceful celebration next August. However, there will be uprising and there will be earth shifts. Where and how they occur is not predetermined. The timing is likely sometime between July 20 and Sep 7, with an intensification between Aug 20 and Aug 30. In addition, this Solar Eclipse is conjunct Regulus, a powerful bright star that exemplifies leadership, power (often abuse of power) and royalty. That Uranus trines this point supports rebellion of the power. Something's comin' down. Likely a significant regime change somewhere on the planet.
Donald's ascendant is at 29 Leo conjunct Regulus, which suggests he looks like royalty and seems like royalty. The Sun-Moon opposition conjunct the Nodes tells us who he really is--unstable, addicted to something, and ambitious. Anyway, the Eclipse lands right on his Ascendant. This is a big wake up call, if not even more. If I was him, I would stay home in August, but even there won't be safe.
The Lunar Eclipse in August happens at 11:11am on the 7thon the west coast of the U.S. The 11:11 supports a break through of synchronicity. Something beyond this world intervenes.
On February 26th, the Solar Eclipse joins Neptune and some bizarre twist of fate may have us feeling lost and confused. It's going to take us a bit to figure out our paths and the direction we need to go.
3. Venus retrograde. First--a little bias--a love Venus retrogrades. I love the mythic 40 day time to go into deep ritual to rewrite our love karma. It happens every other year, so what's so cool about this one? Well, first, it just happens to coincide with Lent (March 4 - APril 15--Easter is April 16). I was raised Catholic (Catholic school and all). The past ten years have led me deep into the study of history and left me astounded at the vast levels of cruelty that the Catholic Church has perpetrated on innocent people and the utter hypocrisy of most of the "great" teachers and leaders of the church. (I mean Crusades, Inquisitions, did you watch Borgia?--and then there was the Cadaver Synod, look it up to be entertained). I have a friend who I respect highly who was not raised Catholic and has found her way to an experience of Catholicism that seems to me mystical. While I entirely disapprove of the way the Catholic Church has handled their business, I have no doubt about the mystical power of the ancient rituals of the Catholic Church (which predate Jesus). Masuro Emoto basically proved transubstantiation, the ritual in the mass where prayer and intention change the nature of bread and wine. In Italy, where the art is focused heavily on pictures of Jesus, I had a downright out of the body experience looking at the severed head of Saint Catherine of Siena in the Basilica of San Dominic. So I get that there is something terribly powerful about it all.
But right now (and it might not seem it), the rug is getting pulled out on any structures that involve patriarchal, hierarchical forms. The lies are getting exposed. For 1700 years, the Catholic Church has wielded tremendous power in this world. It has orchestrated the worst crimes. And it is one of the most, if not the most, misogynistic organization on the planet. This Venus retrograde may serve to support an awakening in the Catholic Church and other Christian organizations. This current pope is a little radical and his stance on refugees, the environment and corporate greed is stirring up controversy. I look forward to hearing more from him during Lent (aka Venus retrograde). Something about the importance of the roles women have played in the Catholic Church?
Venus retrograde is all about going within to find our sensual, feminine power, the true purpose of renunciation and fasting. It is the time when Inanna goes into the underworld to find herself. It is the 40 days in the desert repenting. Venus retrograde time is for finding our true creative path, our passion and our sexual nature so that we can bring that nature and path into our work on this evolving planet.
I love the synchronicity of Easter (Apr 16), Tax Day (Apr 17), and Venus stationing going direct (Apr 15) all happening at the same time. The parallel planes of existence reveal an underlying dynamic of a rebirth in Feminism unlike anything we have seen before. Pluto stationing at the same time (exact Apr 20), suggests a reversal in power. How many people are going to blow off paying taxes this year after our new president just gave us all permission? I predict the lowest rate of return ever. Venus just isn't interested in taxes.
Astrologically, Venus stations direct mid April conjunct Chiron. In Magi astrology, Chiron is about true love. This is an awesome aspect for finding our true loves and opening to a greater love in the relationships we are already in. That Venus and Chiron are sextile Mars heats up the passion and makes it even better.
In Vedic astrology, Venus is exalted in Pisces for the entire retrograde period (actually a full four months starting in February) supporting the best experience of Venus that we can have. Venus is super creative and loving in Pisces. Saraswati and Lakshmi are both happy with Venus in Pisces. Saraswati is the Goddess of Learning, Music and Creative Expression. Lakshmi is the Goddess of Abundance, Prosperity and Manifestation. They often don't sync up, but during Venus in Pisces they are both accepting of each other.
4. Times of forward movement.
May, June, October and November all have a lot of harmonious and powerful aspects for accomplishment, forward movement, celebration, love and creativity.
Don't let the encouragement to feel fear get to you. It can look really bad, but all of this has a purpose. There is a higher intelligence in the Universe, of that I'm sure. It is far bigger than I can imagine. And no amount of politics, earth shifts or climate change interferes with that intelligence.
At the same time, get to work. Know what you are here for and get on with it. No excuses, no distractions, no reasons for delay. If you don't know, get a reading. We'll remember it together. That's what I'm here for.
May the long time Sun shine upon you
All love surround you
And the pure light within you
Guide your way on
~Kundalini yoga blessing song
There are some interesting transits going on that I want to shed light on. First of all, Vedic Jupiter moves from the intense ego fire of Leo into the grounded practical Virgo on August 11th. When Vedic Jupiter moves into an earth sign, it aspects all earth signs moving us elementally from fire into earth, especially supporting Taurus and Capricorn that Saturn is also aspecting. This grounds the spacious visionary experiences of the past year into practicality and purpose. What was grandiose, full of ego, pride and passion, now moves into the nitty-gritty realism of the work of being in a body on this planet at this time.
Both Trump and Bernie have smoked the bees out of the hive. Now we can find each other. The idealism of both campaigns begins to land. The real consequences of actions, words, and intent come into form. Both men were born near lunar eclipses. Trump was born during a Total Lunar Eclipse. When we are born during an eclipse, fate takes over our life. We have little control over our destiny. Even the actions that we can control move us further along a path that is eclipsed by society. We sacrifice our personal agenda, our free will and sometimes our happiness to be projected upon by humanity. We serve at the pleasure.
The more we are afraid of our projections, the more the fear grows. If we find it in ourselves to project love onto that which fully accepts our projections, we grow love at an exorbitant rate. This is a choice we have.
Society is out-gassing. It is releasing karma. Often, when something is out-gassing, it stinks and we risk exposure to something nasty that we don’t want in our systems. Yet, without the out-gassing, without the stink, the toxin infects us without our knowledge. The visibility of the toxin allows us a chance to heal. It offers us a direction. Points us on a path of purpose.
As we move into eclipse time, we have an even greater opportunity to release—an even more important chance/need to express love, joy, and hope.
There is another way to out-gas than through anger and fear. Celebration.
Celebration is the collective release of toxins. Dancing, singing, making art, love and laughing are all ways of out-gassing. From August 21 – 25, both Mars and Saturn aspect the Solar Eclipse point, making this the most intense point of the eclipse time (August – September). We will likely see earth shifts, humanity shifts, plenty of fear to go around and lots of excitement. Intentionally cultivate joy. Without being afraid of the grief and anxiety that may arise, allow the beauty of this world to overwhelm you.
In great perfection, during the most intense and perhaps challenging eclipse time, all three of the benefics are conjunct: Mercury, Venus and Jupiter. For much of these days, this forms a Saraswati yoga—a profound support of understanding, creativity, wisdom and spiritual ascension. This is a great time for study, music and the arts.
It seems like it was just a few days ago when I sent out an email that I wasn't ready to put anything new out as far as classes go. Then yesterday, my dear friend, Sarah, sent me an email to sign her up for my new class. Since I hadn't put anything out there recently about a class, this was mystifying. I did think it was interesting that the day before I had reached out to my "Vedic teacher"--the person I am taking the correspondence course with--asking for advice on how to proceed with my learning. I received an email back from his assistant that was informative but not very inviting in. What I got intuitively was that I was pretty free to do as I pleased. I am almost complete with the course and the next steps are mine to choose. I do plan on getting my Jyotisha certification, but I am not going to let a document define me. That will happen when it happens.
Then this morning, I went on line to look at my schedule, and instead of seeing my schedule, the window popped up for me to "create a new workshop". Not sure how I got there, but I know how to take a hint. Workshop is now created. I know that through teaching Jyotisha (the study of light--the sanskrit work for Vedic astrology), I will learn and grow faster than through any other way.
There are two classes that I put out--one that is an Astrology for Yourself group. I have been leading classes like these for years. I love these groups--and being part of--and getting to witness our lives as they transform.
The other is the Jyotisha class. Before teaching an ongoing class, I will be leading a day long workshop as an introduction. The workshop is available whether you want to take the ongoing class or not, but it is designed for those who are considering taking a year long study. Feel free to email me with questions about either.
Love and light,
Lately this has been my word. Having three planets, Sun, Mercury and Jupiter, in Aries if you are doing western or just two, Mercury and Jupiter, in Jyotisha, patience isn't my forte. Once life gets really good, as it is right now, I often find myself with the strong desire to leap into the next thing, create the next class, the next project, the next event, the next relationship. I have often invoked patience as kind of a dirty word, a word to drag around with me to slow me down. Like patience as punishment. For some reason, at this moment, I am finding patience as pleasure. The feeling that I don't need to do or be better than I am right now. Nothing needs to change. Life will take care of all the change I really need.
Earlier this year, I put out an advertisement for a new class, but in my current place am finding that I'm not ready to start anything new. I need to sink into the changes that have occurred and wait on the Tao, as they say.
My Vedic work is deepening. I have completed 6 series of an 8 series correspondence course with Dennis Flaherty. He is a brilliant teacher. I never thought I would enjoy a CD course--but his quick pace and story telling keeps it very interesting.
I am only at the alphabet in learning Sanskrit, but I am finding how profound it is to learn the letters and correct pronunciation of this ancient and sacred language. The CD course I am doing is with Vyass Houston, a master in the language who I met at Kripalu.
My brother, Ray, and I are still working on our "history" book together. Charting the course of Pluto through history in our own unique way.
I have put aside the Sacred Geometry and Astrology book--for now--to complete the Cycles book and hopefully get that done in the next few months. It would be lovely to complete something.
I know all of my studying and writing is going somewhere--and since I love to share what I learn and sit in groups, I think it's likely that is coming. I know that I will know when it's time.
in·ef·fa·ble adjective \(ˌ)i-ˈne-fə-bəl\ : too great, powerful, beautiful, etc., to be described or expressed
Word of the day. Had to look it up. After reading a Ram Dass passage.
I don't think we use this word enough.
This year in Olympia, the rain came back right on cue, on the first day of fall. We have had a ridiculously sunny and beautiful summer. I think I was getting the opposite of cabin fever. I couldn't think anymore if it was sunny out. I just had to go outside barefoot and weed, or just walk barefoot. Its the first time I actually have the tough bare feet thing (that my son gets every year since he takes his shoes off on the summer solstice and wears them as little as possible all summer).
But as soon as the rain started I felt like I could focus again. But on what? Some things are brewing--old things with a new twist (my sessions with Dan), new things for me that have an ancient twist (Vedic astrology, which I am obsessed with and yet still a novice beginner) and my new totally awesome harmonium arrived today (thank you, Jessica Rose, for your inspiration).
Stay tuned . . .(and if you have any suggestions that would be great.)
One of the stranger things that happened during these past few months is that I started studying Vedic astrology. It began because I wanted to understand the 9th harmonic better and Vedic astrology places some significance on the 9th harmonic. So I thought I could learn something from this ancient form. One thing led to another and this form is calling to me. This next weekend I am off to the Vedic Astrology Conference in Seattle. Its strange to be a beginner again.
As I get back into seeing clients, I am hoping to make scheduling easier, since I don't like to answer my phone much. I am trying out Schedulicity. And I'm looking for an office for my practice. I have a few leads.
Carol and I along with a fantastic web designer got our Plants and Planets website up and running. Its lovely. Check it out. www.plantsandplanets.org
In addition to work stuff, I'm enjoying gardening and making yummy salads from the garden. My son, Finn's, last days in elementary school were filled with tears. We both really love that place, Lincoln Elementary. I whole part of my community life is changing. Gratefully, Finn has a sweet set up for next year. He is going to do home schooling along with his three best friends and a gaggle of parents.
Just as Finn and lots of folks take off for the summer, I'm getting back into work. It feels good to be of service again.