*All times are PDT, unless stated otherwise. Planetary positions are expressed as the degree followed by the sign. If there is a number following the sign, it refers to the minute position in the degree of that sign. As with an hour, there are 60 minutes in a degree. For example, 10° Virgo 43’, means 10 degrees and 43 minutes Virgo.
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On July 22th, the Sun, which represents the core of your being, joins Mercury, the planet of communication and perception, in Leo. Now the voice you will be hearing is your very own. Resist falling into the Leo tar pit of pride and allow the lion’s great sense of humor to express what’s in your kingly heart. The Sun rules Leo so it should be a bit easier to tune into your own will and plug into the perpetual light energy available to you 24/7. Thankfully there is a respite from the intense planetary action (aspects) we’ve seen since the trio of eclipses earlier this summer. It’s a great time to bask in the Leo spotlight, feel the warmth and pure creativity of this time and just shine.
When the Sun trines Uranus on July 27th, everybody has the opportunity to be brilliant. This offers high potential for the free flow of energy between will and intuition. Inspiration can come from unexpected sources to unlock, unblock and otherwise uncheck forward movement.
On July 28th, things start to heat up again as Venus joins the fun in fiery Leo. Strut your stuff for with Venus in Leo, passions will flare after the period of domesticity in Cancer. What is it we really value about ourselves that we want others to notice? Later on the 28th, Mercury moves into its less flamboyant home sign of Virgo for a few days before going retrograde. But while there Mercury gives a shout out to retrograde Neptune in Pisces at 0°. With an opposition, the challenge is to see both sides of the story and elevate awareness to the point of seeing what is best for all. If Mercury in Virgo is in the service of precise communications and Neptune in Pisces deep dives into boundless mysticism, then together, in the brief window of this Virgo/Pisces polarity, they give one last try at expressing with keen analysis our great need for compassion and interconnectedness. That is the ideal of course. The other side brings to mind confusion, lack of clarity, smoke and mirrors. Let’s hope our world leaders rise above the clouds and hear the higher message.
On July 28th at 4:03 pm PDT, the Moon in Cancer squares Saturn in Libra and then goes void-of-course (VOC) for more than 30 hours until moving into Leo on July 29th at 11:16 pm PDT. VOC is the moon’s transitional state between signs that begins when it makes its last major aspect (conjunction, sextile, square, trine, opposition) to the Sun or any planet and ends when it enters the next sign. The moon changes signs approximately every two and a half days and the VOC period can last anywhere between a few minutes to a day or so. When you think that each sign is a sort of antidote to the immediately preceding sign, it is easy to imagine that the process of transitioning from one sign to the other can be unsettling and possibly chaotic (especially if your sensitivity to the moon’s movements are not balanced by an awareness of how to manage your emotions). It’s like changing channels on the radio and experiencing the static in between stations. You don’t get really clear signals. That is why during the VOC moon it is not the best time to start new projects, initiate new relationships or make important decisions. Of course we frequently don’t have the luxury of waiting on optimum planetary placements in our complex modern life so if we must do any of these things during the VOC period, we should make an extra effort to stay connected. On the other hand, great activities to put on the VOC calendar: clean out the closet or otherwise work on organizing/de-cluttering some aspect of our environment, meditate to clear our thoughts and/or imagine our beautiful future, review something already in motion and edit as necessary or think of next steps. Just as with any astrological cycle, the last phase of the Moon’s relatively brief VOC cycle is about letting go of the immediate past and preparing for the immediate future.
On July 30th, 11:40 am, the attention grabbing Leo New Moon (Moon conjunct Sun at 7°) kicks things up. The innocence of new beginnings is heightened in Leo with a great show of untainted excitement for a fresh start on any project, but only if we’re willing to let go of inhibition. The only reason Leo’s Sun won’t shine is because wounded pride sends it heading for cover. Fear of criticism or rejection corrupts Leo’s expression of pure joy.
Venus trine Uranus on July 31st influences the New Moon signature with an openness to experiment with new relationships and a respect for the uniqueness that each of us brings to the table. Also, the underlying rumbles of the long term Uranus/Pluto square (little more than a degree from exact at this time) demands that we make conscious choices in this quickening world. Transformation is on the fast track now so being in the moment and as aware as possible will ensure you are the agent for change, riding with the wave instead of resisting the inevitable, which is a recipe for crisis.
On August 1st, the Sun at 9° Leo squares Jupiter at 9° Taurus. This is a good time to look at any contradictions we may feel exist in our lives. Is the creative expression of our light, warmth and vitality (Sun in Leo) at odds with our faith in only that which is practical and material (Jupiter in Taurus)? Squares challenge us to become aware of inconsistencies so we can change what isn’t working and get our lives back to balance. This particular transit could reveal an insecurity or some other negative trait that may act as an undertow slowing down our forward motion. If we are honest with ourselves about what keeps us from our joy we may find the key to self-confidence.
On August 2nd at 8:50 am PDT, Mercury stations retrograde at 1° Virgo 11°. Not Again! Didn’t we just do this? Yes, but Mercury does this dance at least three times every year. This time, we should think back to how we expressed ourselves while Mercury was in Leo: “Here I am! Hear me roar!” We’ll have to re-trace our steps since July 15th when the shadow period began. What activity related to our contacts with others, communications or internal perceptions may need a re-write? It isn’t uncommon to experience a complete about face on some subject when Mercury changes direction. Since we’re talking Mercury in Leo here, with its tendency towards the bombastic, it could be an overplayed hand which is coming back to bite us on the butt. Think the national debt talks in Washington. This retrograde is going to seem like a long one as Mercury moves back into Leo and won’t station direct until August 26th at 18° Leo 41°. That does give us plenty of time to reflect, review and reconsider before redoing. Mercury retrogrades are good times for tending to unfinished business. Dust off the old ideas, manuscripts and whatever’s as they should be prime for finishing after Mercury goes direct.
On August 3rd feel the energy shift as Mars leaves mutable air Gemini and enters cardinal water Cancer in the early morning hours. Our assertiveness now has the potential to be very subtle – the best way through someone’s wall is to find the loose brick. Security will be at the forefront of our wants but our way of getting it may frequently be indirect. We’ll be tempted to side step to avoid direct confrontation (how uncomfortable is that!). The only thing that can get a Cancer really riled up and ready to get what it wants is to make it about family. We may not want to ask for ourselves, but if we put our loved ones in the picture that changes the whole game. Taking this theme to the next level is Mars trine Neptune where the spiritual warrior in all of us may be unleashed in the name of the global village. The ultra-sensitive nature of this day is underscored by the Moon making an aspect to Chiron and every other planet except Mercury before the clock strikes midnight.
On August 4th, retrograde Neptune returns to Aquarius for the remainder of 2011. This is our opportunity to revisit the root philosophy of the Age of Aquarius. We are being called to bring forth into the next phase of human evolution our most innovative ideas to heal Mother Earth and bring her back to balance. Accenting this moment, Venus at 9° Leo squares Jupiter at 9° Taurus. This is a Queen (Venus in Leo) who regards Nature in a deeply spiritual way (Jupiter in Taurus). The square challenges her to seek sensible, far-sighted means to re-establish her feminine place at the table of governance. Note also that Jupiter’s energy is building as he is gets closer to the Earth and is beginning to slow down in preparation to go retrograde on August 29th.
Kimberly & Jim