Traditional gender archetypes are held for questioning during the Lunar Eclipse on October 8th and the weeks that follow. The Eclipse features two prominent configurations: a T-square (an opposition with a focal planet in square to each of the opposing planets) that peaks October 8th-11th, and a five-planet Kite (a grand trine with a focal planet – in this case two – in sextile to two of the trining planets) that unfolds October 8th-19th. Each of the three astral events – the Eclipse, the Kite and the T-square all contain elements of the theme of evolving gender roles. This is a complex with many astral players involved in the download of evolutionary information (see diagram). Appropriately for this subject, it’s going to take a village above as it does below. The progressive concept being presented by the stars is an expansion of our notion of what it is to be masculine and feminine. The Sun (a masculine energy) is in Libra, which is ruled by the Queen of femininity herself, Venus. The Moon (representing the feminine) is in macho Mars’ natural domain of Aries. Are they interlopers, switch hitters, or simply walking in each other’s shoes for an experience of a different but no less significant point of view? That will be for each of us to decide from our own unique perspective. The aspects imprinting this lunar event are so charged with the necessity for movement, we won’t have much of a choice but to be fully engaged in order to successfully navigate whatever situations transpire. On the other end of this two-week period, perhaps we can begin to envision a sense of the anima/animus beyond a strictly defined single set. At the recent ISAR astrology conference, the renowned scholar Richard Tarnas discussed a developing model of gender quadruplicity: solar/solar, solar/lunar, lunar/lunar and lunar/solar that I have been further exploring with Jim Sher. The notion that we don’t have to homogenously act either masculine or feminine allows for a more relaxed, balanced and liberating expression of the archetypes wherein we identify less with the physical attributes and engrained societal programming, and more with the spirit within each soul that has the ability to access whatever archetype, or combination thereof, is needed in a particular moment. Call it “situation sex” if you will.
Within hours of the Eclipse on October 8th, the essential female/male planetary archetypes, Venus and Mars, activate the planetary formations integral to this Eclipse. Venus translates the ongoing Uranus/Pluto square from her position in Libra, thus creating a tension-filled T-square in initiating cardinal signs. Strong in her home sign dedicated to partnership and diplomacy – both “soft” attributes more associated with the feminine, Venus asserts her Amazonian force on the signature outer planetary aspect defining our current era, which has been evidenced by the tremendous social, political, economic and environmental upheavals playing out on the world stage over the last few years, with Hong Kong currently erupting as the new hot spot. Venus’ relatively quick orbit impacts the current sensitive points occupied by revolutionary Uranus and evolutionary Pluto approximately every two and a half months. Her repeated presence in the era defining aspect reinvigorates the outer planets’ purpose with the imperative to employ a balanced approach that takes into consideration the needs of the collective as well as the individual, the worker as well as the shareholder. She also maintains that whatever solution is reached as a result of the outer planet friction causing a paradigm shift on our planet, in order for it to be effective and long lasting it must have a mutual respect for the strong side of the feminine and the soft side of the masculine.
Mars has been translating a grand fire trine (a triangle formation of three planets) that began with his trine to Uranus back on October 4th (see last AstroCast) and ends with his trine to Jupiter also on October 8th. This aspect by itself represents a harmonious, naturally flowing energy between the planets of action, expansion and innovation. In fire signs, this grand trine becomes exuberant, inspirational and perhaps a little self-absorbed with little or no awareness of just how easily the attributes of the aspect are available. The grand trine is inherently stable with truly no tension. It may therefore lack the necessary motivators to appropriately channel the energetic conflagration at play. Significantly, Venus and the Sun traveling together in Libra transform this grand trine configuration into the Kite formation that is in effect this entire period. The third representation of the gender quadruplicity, the Sun and Venus working together from Venus’ home base challenge the grand trine planets to put their considerable talents to work. Being the dynamic focal point of the Kite, the Sun and Venus in opposition to Uranus in Aries force the trendsetter planet to consider other points of view and reach an acceptance of his unique role within society where he must agree to support as well as be supported, instead of insisting on his natural inclination to go it alone. Pulling in the sextile assists from self-assertive Mars and philosophical Jupiter to resolve the identity struggle of the opposition, the focal planets in Libra make the Kite a potent social mobilizer in the feminization of the Patriarchy.
Jumping back into the Libra bandwagon, retrograde Mercury returns to the sign of the scales on October 10th to add his voice to the march for equality. As Mercury retreats, he will engage with the upper part of the Kite planets in a so called mini grand trine, aka a minor trine, formation with Mercury conjuncting both the Sun and Venus, and the three of them sextiling Mars and Jupiter, which are in trine to each other. Mercury’s moment begins with the Inferior Conjunction with the Sun on October 16th, the mid-point of the retrograde period at which time a shift in perspective or an enlightenment experience regarding an issue of particular focus generally occurs. The tight stellium (three or more planets conjunct) of the inner most personal planets (Sun, Mercury, Venus) in Libra (October 16th-17th) is a honey-coated recipe for congeniality that has the potential to disarm any angry mob agitated by the ongoing Uranus/Pluto square, or at least dispatch the highest-level diplomats to the bargaining table to begin assuaging their substantial discontent. Again, Mars and Jupiter in sextile to the stellium (October 19th-20th) generates an enterprising determination to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.
From the dawn of the Patriarchal age precious belief systems handed down through the ages have been telling us a very limiting story of what are acceptable roles for men and women. And we bought it. As we continue forward into the unknown of the future, with an awareness of the high probability for a major shift in the collective consciousness, may the traditional gender roles continue to evolve, or shatter in the face of entrenched resistance, so that a more functional and flexible way of relating between the sexes can be established in all arenas of life from the home to the world stage.
Here’s the data:
Times where noted are Pacific Time Zone. Degrees where noted are rounded to the nearest whole degree.
October 8th -Moon opposite Sun (Lunar Eclipse Full Moon) at 15° Aries/Libra at 3:51 a.m.
October 8th -Venus square Pluto at 11° Libra/Capricorn at 10:31 a.m.
October 8th -Mars trine Jupiter at 17° Sagittarius/Leo at 1:43 p.m.
October 10th – Retrograde Mercury at 29.9° Libra at 10:27 a.m.
October 10th -Sun sextile Jupiter at 18° Libra/Leo at 4:18 p.m.
October 11th – Venus opposite Uranus at 14° Libra/Aries at 2:10 a.m.
October 14th – Venus sextile Jupiter at 18° Libra/Leo at 1:33 a.m.
October 15th – Sun sextile Mars at 22° Libra/Sagittarius at 12:19 a.m.
October 16th – Sun conjunct Mercury (Inferior Conjunction) at 23° Libra at 1:40 p.m.
October 16th – Mercury sextile Mars at 23° Libra/Sagittarius at 6:49 p.m.
October 17th- Mercury conjunct Venus at 22° Libra at 10:56 a.m.
October 19th – Venus sextile Mars at 26° Libra/Sagittarius at 10:19 p.m.
October 20th – Mercury sextile Jupiter at 19° Libra/Leo at 1:38 p.m.