Opening Hearts & Changing Minds

Posted on December 31, 2009
Posted by Jim Sher

Although you will be reading this newsletter after the New Year, marking the beginning of 2010 (I’ve heard one should pronounce it Twenty Ten), it is being written a few hours after the Lunar Eclipse (Full Moon) on December 31, 2009. By the way, it is considered to be a Blue Moon (meaning that there are two Full Moons this month), but as far as I know that fact has no astrological significance. The fact that it is an Eclipse, however, is another matter entirely. That’s what makes this Full Moon significant. It is occurring at 10 degs. of Cancer and Capricorn and it strongly affects any planets one has at 10 Aries and 10 Libra as well. A Solar Eclipse (New Moon) will occur in two weeks on January 14, 2010 at 25 degs. of Capricorn, so the eclipse of today is a harbinger of things to come.

There are a lot of writings out there about eclipses and some are quite negative. I do not regard them so simplistically and certainly not uniformly negative. As many of you know, I refer to them as “inertia changers,” meaning that the series of lunar and solar eclipses that occurs every 6 months create conditions where we are asked or sometimes forced to look and deal with life conditions in a totally new way. Depending on how one’s natal chart is affected by a particular eclipse, we can have life-changing events occur to us. These can, on occasions, be difficult or disconcerting, but often they are not. They are simply changing the game, and sometimes even the rules. The truth is that we need these eclipses because we can be lazy and often get into a rut, resisting change even when it may be good for us. It is our nature to resist the new.

A Lunar eclipse which occurs at the Full Moon is when the earth is between the Sun and the Moon. Here is an incredible website that will show you what this looks like as well as the coming solar eclipse: (Thanks to Jim Schultz for this amazing website). My view of any lunar eclipse is that it allows us to open to our own unconscious and actually feel freer from its pull. Now, how this can occur differs for each of us. Sometimes it can simply be experienced as an opening of our hearts to new possibilities. At other times, though, the inner changes are accompanied by a cathartic event, sometimes, explosive, that results from an upsurge of unexamined aspects of our psyche that need to see the light of day. Just as a fever often rises before we can get well, the lunar eclipse amplify feelings so that we can actually ‘feel’ them, perhaps more deeply than ever. The heart opening result is often the same whether or not the change occurs peacefully or more severely. We are free to feel something that we have not felt and make conscious decisions from a very new place. Will these decisions work out? Not automatically, of course. But our hearts are open now and we will do well to allow them to be so, no matter what the outcome may be.

This is especially true for a second astrological reason. Along with Mars, Mercury is now retrograde as well. It went retrograde on Saturday, December 26, 2009 at 21 Capricorn and will go all the way back to 5 degs. of Capricorn on Jan. 15, 2010. We are accustomed to the retrograde Mercury cycle as it occurs every 4 months or so. We are capable of intuiting it because, frankly, it’s part of our DNA. Whenever Mercury is retrograde we have to review, re-think and re-evaluate some aspect of our lives. We need to do it as we have overlooked something and can now discover what is missing. Again, astrology writings are rife with negative takes on Mercury retrograde, but the fact is that we need them. Our minds have been racing forward, tying to accomplish more and more, but now is when we have to slow down or even stop, catch our breath and take a second look. We need to see something new before we can successfully move forward. Also, in the middle of the cycle there is the Inferior conjunction which will occur on Jan. 4 at 14 Capricorn which makes some new ‘Seed’ idea emerge within us and which may start us in a new direction. Sure, this new direction may be unwelcome. Whether we ‘think’ of it as welcome or unwelcome is indicated by how it affects our personal birth chart, but it is always revealing something that we must take into account and with which we must work.

When we look at the meaning of these two astronomical events happening at the same time, these coinciding phenomena strongly suggest that we be as open as we can to something new that is just now beginning to emerge. It hasn’t fully revealed itself yet. In fact, there may be many more things that will unfold before all of what’s developing will be fully seen. The fact is that January of 2010 is very busy with astrological signatures. We are all under very shifting sands right now, much of which we will not be able to act on as of yet. In other words, dealing with the shifting sands will also have to include actively ‘sifting’ through all that is emerging, looking for gold, for new opportunities while simultaneously letting go of what is falling away. We may find ourselves in a mysterious mixture of new and old. This could frustrate us, if we become impatient, but this is just not the time for clear action. Perhaps, the only actions we can be clear about are the ones that are happening TO us and which we know we must respond to and act upon. Allowing things to grow as organically as possible is always a pretty good axiom to live be, but right now this seems especially true. We are now dealing fully with both Mercury and Mars being in retrograde motion, deepening the review process.

I find times like this to be exhilarating in many ways. Not because I’m clear, but because I’m not. When I’m clear, it’s due to the fact that I know ‘what is what’ and what needs to be done or what I want to do. That’s great, but I also know that it is at times like the one we in now in which change is happening. Doorways are just now appearing, though perhaps seen only dimly. Our hearts are opening to new possibilities, but we are just beginning to feel this. We can only decide now to let them grow, for they will do just that. All we have to do is allow whatever is emerging to be acknowledged and let the big decisions wait until much more is known.

The “Jack and Jill” series will return in the next newsletter with a specific article on “Jack.”As always, your replies are appreciated. Those of you who have never replied, I encourage you to let me and our readers know what your thoughts are. You can remain anonymous if you like or use a different name if you prefer. My hope is for the newsletter articles to stimulate your thinking and to help you look at your life in a slightly different way. That is what is fun for me.

I know sometimes I am asked questions by my interested and insightful readers. I will try to answer some of them, but please forgive me if I am not able to attend to all of them.

Have a very Happy New Year and a successful one.

All the best,


Astrology Lunar Eclipse Mercury Retrograde
Jim Sher

Jim brings over 35 years of experience as a therapist and transformational counselor to his practice of astrology, metaphysics, meditation and philosophy. He operates as a teacher and counselor and specializes in the use of discourse as a part of his teaching approach.

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7 responses to “Opening Hearts & Changing Minds”

  1.' anita says:

    wow… on dec. 14th a trip to australia planned for a whole year beforehand to enjoy december holidays w/family was unexpectedly cancelled the previous day due to the fact that my nationality needed 4 weeks to request a visa to enter (I overlooked asking beforehand and nobody told me about it either). U.S. citizens need only to pay 25.00 for a visa at airport.
    All packed and ready we decided to take off for Oaxaca,Mexico. All doors opened beautifully,suddenly, the day mercury went retrograde our rented car(reserved in advance for 1 week) was cancelled, my daugther was hit w/ kidney infection in a remote beach…a young male in our party hit the top of his head on a towel rack in the hotel bathroom and was bleeding…each event provided the four in our party to use our best energies to solve and flow…we continued to help each other as more challenges presented themselves everyday…communications began to breakdown…on the 29th we travelled back to the u.s.a. my daugther w/strep throat, my husband with a skin rash on his chest, me with sinus infection. On new year’s eve three of us were totally under the weather w/huge lung,throat and sinus infections…big relationship issues showing themselves up and in the midst of all this we were able to not only survive..we also located a healer we had been looking for in the past months and the modality used could very well solve a 10 year health issue….there is no question that the intensity we are all experiencing is here to aid us all if we can manage to help each other flow…flow…flow…and TRUST. Thanks Jim for your newsletter…it provides many of us w/a very good point of reference
    May 2010 allow all of us to be ready for the blessings that life offers in many disguises and to walk together hand in hand…

  2.' linda quakenbush says:

    Wishing you a very happy new year, Jim. Your email blogs have been inspiring and incredibly insightful. The care and thought you have put into your writing really shows. Thank you for sharing your knowledge–it’s been like having a motor I can fire-up on the rowboat…

  3.' ronna says:

    hello Jim~
    I truly enjoyed reading about your definition of the full moon eclipse being an “inertia changer” … I must say I have felt the effects like a shot of tequila! Only… I didn’t know I had taken a shot, but… that I was experiencing something strong and mind altering!! I wonder if the severity had anything to do with the fact that my birthday occurred on December 31st?!
    January 1st was when the sobering effect kicked in over how I had once again allowed a “friend” to energetically railroad a sacred space I had tried to create for my birthday and the celebration of a New Year with friends… I know I allowed it, and even opened the door for it by inviting him… and the “inertia changer” for me is realizing how wrong I was to allow this person into a space I know he doesn’t understand…
    This is a quote from you-
    “At other times, though, the inner changes are accompanied by a cathartic event, sometimes, explosive, that results from an upsurge of unexamined aspects of our psyche that need to see the light of day.”
    Whew!!! Cathartic! Yes!!! The process by which I my realization occurred on both a psychic and emotional level was charged with pain, and an upsurge of questions and queries directed towards myself and my inner self.
    My awareness raising in the process about how a sacred space is meant to be honored and protected. And how, in my anger towards my friend for acting selfishly… his actions were my teachers. I learned a great deal about myself in a powerfully short time- such as where some of my deeper values lie… and that perhaps they were “sleeping” till now.

    Here’s to waking up the sleeping giants with us, and not fearing the power of their presence in our lives.


    ronna jones

  4.' NOW says:

    I especially like to read your ‘take’ on how astrology is affecting our world politics. I read several different sites that bring to the table many different aspects of what is being affected and it is nice to compare what everyone is saying.

    The ‘heart opening’ is being referred to in many places. You are right on!

    Happy 2010!


  5.' Carol says:

    These eclipses and retrogrades are affecting my chart in a very significant way. Discipline, responsibility, taking action where ever I can (there’s a fine balance between taking action and not forcing things to happen) are all things that are part of these transits for me. Staying open to the unknown in the process.

    Thank you!

  6.' Lee Varis says:

    Thank you Jim,

    As usual, a very thoughtful and insightful article that mirrors whats happening with me right now. Various circumstance have arisen that find me cleaning up, throwing out, re-organizing (and backing up my computer) in preparation for a temporary move out of my office. All this is happening right in the middle of two book writing projects. I’m sort of “going with the flow” on this and not focusing on the stressful aspects of the multiple conflicting projects. It all seems to be about living “in the moment” and just acting in accord with the circumstances – one step after the other. Yeah… “open heart” – trying not to close off and feel sorry for myself seems to be the challenge at hand!

    Thanks again,


  7.' sylvia alden says:

    Greetings Jim,
    I don’t’ know enough about astrology for the jack and Jill series to have much meaning for me. What does have great meaning for me are your blogs. Thank you so much. You are positive and often have ‘wise words of wisdom’ that hit my heart. Some of those words were (I must paraphrase) ‘We are not meant to know everything right now.’ This is, for me, a vital Truth, which I sometimes forget. Thank you for the reminder to allow my life to unfold in perfect order.

    All the best to you and yours in 2010.

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