Urania's Well: Astrology for Changing Times

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Magickal Monday: Your Guide to the Week Ahead 7/16/12

Before I get into the weekly forecast, I’d like to bring your attention to this article from the Witches and Pagans archive on the meanings of the houses.

I firmly believe that a bit of basic astrology — enough to get an idea of what’s going on in your own chart — is an extremely helpful skill for anyone who practices magick. Not because it can help you plan more effective workings — though it can — but because the symbolic pattern of the planets at the exact time and place of one's birth is a real help in understanding our individual spiritual and magickal journeys and how they are being affected by the current planetary “weather”.

The houses divide the circle of the Zodiac into 12 sections that delineate certain areas of life. While there are disagreements about the systems of house division, two points — the Ascendant and the Midheaven — are sensitive points in any chart, and are generally in agreement across house systems (though not all house systems use the Midheaven as the cusp of the 10th house). In the natal chart, these two points are based on the place and the exact time of your birth (the ascendant moves one degree every four minutes or so).

Find out what time you were born, then get a chart cast. (You can do this online for free, but I had a hard time finding a free service that gives a wheel with the houses clearly marked. If you want free, try this one: print it out and mark the houses yourself, or you can spend $5 for a pdf of a chart wheel that is easy to read at my site). Once you have your chart wheel, you can follow along and see how the more general transits I discuss each week may play out specifically in your life. Also, here is a table of astrology symbols and glyphs, so you can decipher your chart.

If you have a planet in a particular house, then that house is emphasized in some way in the overall plan you set for this life before you jumped off the cloud into your mother’s womb. The houses through which the planets are currently transiting are emphasized in some way in your life now, and it is in those areas that you are being given an opportunity to grow and change. You don’t need to fully understand astrology to follow your chart in this way, and doing so can yield a lot of personal insights.

Now, let’s look at the coming week. The Moon will be moving through Gemini, Cancer, Leo and then into Virgo. In which houses in your chart do those signs fall? They will be activated to one degree or another as the Moon moves through them.

Monday begins on a dark Moon in Gemini that trines Saturn in the early afternoon then moves into Cancer late in the evening. It would be a good day to get things organized and catch up on those emails and phone calls you need to respond to. It’s the beginning of what may prove to be a challenging week, because Mars is in a square aspect to Pluto and oppose Uranus all week, exact on Monday and Tuesday, respectively, and the Cancer Moon promises a highly emotional climate.

Also on Tuesday, the Dark Moon will square Mars. This is a big invitation to changes (cue David Bowie), and with Mars involved, we are likely to see aggressive, “take-no-prisoners” behavior, short tempers, and egos in full bloom, particularly from or directed at those with personal planets in the early-middle degrees of Cardinal signs.

Here’s another consideration — as the Cancer Sun sits high in the sky, right around lunchtime, Libra will be rising, putting Mars on the Ascendant, Pluto on the IC (Imum Coeli, the point opposite the MC), and Uranus on the Descendent in most latitudes. This could make for some very interesting lunches and meetings. You will probably see plenty of erratic, unusual, self-promoting behavior under these aspects, with heavy emotional overtones, especially as the Moon enters Cancer, which means it will be sitting overhead at lunchtime, too, on Tuesday and Wednesday.

With both Sun and Moon in Cancer, we can expect plenty of deep and heartfelt — though not always peaceful — connections with family/tribe/group that could turn defensive. As I said last week, don’t schedule any important business lunches this week — unless creative, out-of-the-box thinking is the goal, and everyone involved has strong, flexible egos. With Jupiter trining Mars, we could see exhibitions of unusual courage, strength and endurance as well. On the national/international stage, the Moon’s trip through Cancer and the Cardinal T-square between Mars, Uranus and Pluto suggest a certain amount of jingoism and uber-patriotic flag-waving and/or territory-claiming.

Using these energies constructively will require some attention and skill. If you don’t already do some kind of morning meditation or spiritual practice, this week would be a great time to develop the habit. Even a few moments in the shower grounding and centering will help. Meditations this week could focus on assessing and affirming your willingness to allow change and transformation in your life and on considering your place as an individual within family and/or tribe. Conscious actions could be directed towards standing up in some way for social justice. If you work in team situations, look for ways to encourage and acknowledge all who are willing to step up and take responsibility.

The Moon continues in emotionally-sensitive Cancer on Wednesday and squares Saturn in the early afternoon — not as bad as it could be, since the Moon is in the sign she rules, and Saturn is in Libra, the sign of its exaltation, but it’s still no time to indulge yourself emotionally. Bring on the self-discipline. If you can make a point of being reliable, reassuring and empathetic towards others, you should get plenty of cooperation, not to mention making the world a little better place to live while you’re at it.

Early Thursday morning, at 12:24 am, is the New Moon in Cancer. This conjunction squares Saturn in Libra, which points to issues involving emotional security and relationships. Take a look at where the New Moon falls in your own chart to determine what areas of your life will be energized this month.

The Moon enters Leo a little after 6:00 am EDT, where she will join Mercury Rx and begin to make easy, flowing trines and sextiles to the long list of planets currently in the Fire and Air signs. Leo is a sign of unbridled creativity and radiant individualism. It is the sign of the leader, the king or queen, and also the sign of the playful, unfettered child. If you read Tarot, think the Sun card. The upside of Leo includes heroism, leadership, and creative problem-solving. The downside brings over-dramatizing, egocentric behavior.

Barack Obama’s natal Sun is in Leo, Mercury is currently transiting retrograde through the sign, and it will be interesting to see what presidential news will be made during the next two and a half days. Secretary Clinton has several Leo placements in her 9th house of foreign travel, and she is in the middle of what the Washington Post described on Sunday as a “…marathon diplomatic trip around the world”.  Clinton is, the Post article claimed, the “most-traveled Secretary of State ever”. Not surprising, with that emphasized ninth house. Since Mercury is retrograde, the ramifications of this trip will not become fully clear until after Mercury goes direct again and gets past its retrograde point of 12 degrees of Leo, in late August. It is also likely that some agreements made during this time will have to be revisited.

With so many planets in Fire and Air, remember to draw on the healing powers of Water, and the ability of Earth to contain.  As the work-week ends on Friday, try consciously invoking Water and Earth if you are feeling frazzled. Getting your to-do list manifested onto paper or pixels may help you feel more organized, and a nice sea-salt bath, energized with a bit of cleansing and healing magick, will go a long way towards setting the tone for your weekend.

Saturday, the Moon moves into Virgo. Spend some time getting organized, planning and implementing diet and health regimens, and taking care of details. Try not to get overly analytical, or overly critical.

Sunday, the Sun comes home to Leo, the sign of its rulership, joining Mercury there. Leo loves to have fun, but the Virgo Moon suggests getting your chores done first.

Hope you have a wonderful week!

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Diotima Mantineia began studying astrology in 1968, taking classes from Zoltan Mason in New York City. For the next 22 years, she practiced astrology only for herself and her friends, continuing her studies while watching an increasingly humanistic, psychologically oriented, modern astrology blossom through the work of leading astrologers such as Noel Tyl, Liz Greene, Rob Hand, Marion March, Stephen Arroyo and Howard Sasportas. In 1986, Diotima began her study of Wicca and started reading Tarot, discovering that she is a gifted intuitive. In 1991, she began practicing both astrology and Tarot professionally. She majored in plant and soil science both in college and grad school, and grows much of her own food and "materia magica" on her land in the mountains of western North Carolina. Diotima’s personal spiritual path is rooted in the Western mystery traditions, the principles of Yoga, and a profound connection with the natural world. Wicca gives structure to her spiritual journey, and she utilizes shamanic practices for healing and to live in harmony with Nature. Over 15 years of studying Chinese martial arts has given her a deep appreciation of Taoist thought which has strongly influenced her magical and personal philosophy. You can find her at www.uraniaswell.com


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