The archetypal adventure of consciousness continues with the third and final conjunction of Mercury and Jupiter in Aquarius on March 4. The prolonged opening to the annual Mercury/Jupiter cycle is due to Mercury’s recent retrograde, which brought under review our manner of wielding power and whether it served self alone or all of humanity. The unusually long-lasting conjunction also gives us more time to contemplate and refine the philosophical ideas coming in for maximum potency so they can mature into the cycle. There is an impartiality to Aquarius that suggests we’ll be more open to receive something new from the frontiers of thought. We may also be seeing how shifts in our perception are leading us into unknown territory, which might be more about learning to live with uncertainty than having to adjust to the correlating external changes themselves. How else can we explore new ways of being?
This seeking of ideas will be supported by an active imagination likely stimulated by a series of alignments in Pisces, beginning with a conjunction between the Sun and Neptune on March 10 that commences a new annual cycle. The Sun represents our heart and the willful expression of what makes us shine in the world. Neptune, which rules Pisces, is the planet that archetypally symbolizes the immeasurable realm of consciousness. Pisces correlates to an intense sensitivity that brings about greater awareness of the subtle currents in life. The Sun/Neptune pair opens the imagination to non-material realms where the essence of the Mystery is distilled into universal archetypes that tell the story of who we are. Under the influence of these archetypes, we may feel drawn to epic tests of our mettle against fire breathing dragons, passionate romances that test our heart’s capacity to give and receive unconditional love, and the ultimate test to discover the vibrant soul deep within and bring its powerful healing force to bear on a soul-sick humanity, despite the rational mind’s insistence there are more important things to do in the material world.
On March 11, the Moon enters Pisces and makes successive conjunctions to Venus and Neptune on March 12, then conjuncts the Sun on March 13 to form the New Moon. This intensification of the Pisces archetype at the commencement of the new lunar cycle could trigger behavioral programming to surface in our awareness (the fire-breathing dragons!). We may seek to escape, but if we stay in the battle and try to understand their source of power, we have the potential to dissolve them and experience a liberation. Pisces’ heroic task is to allow the death of something that no longer serves, so that a new way of being can be born. It is the end of the road of the Zodiac that prepares the way for fresh beginnings which move us forth with renewed love and compassion for self and other. Understanding is a key word for Pisces, which comes with growing awareness and developing the ability to accept everything that happens as necessary, especially the fundamental death and rebirth aspect of life.
As discussed in the last AstroCast, Venus is travelling in close conjunction with the Sun through mid-April and itself conjuncts Neptune on March 13. This commences yet another new cycle, the “seed idea” phase, of approximately 13.5 months. Venus/Neptune calls us to find the sacred in all that we attract in our life, especially our relationships. The highest ideals of Love are evoked as potentials beckoning us to actualize them. We follow these signposts as long as we dare, delicately navigating through a landscape of broken dreams and shattered hearts… until we learn, and grow, and evolve. To me Venus/Neptune feels like a yearning to merge with the vast Mystery in a Divine Romance. Yet to stay grounded in this reality, it also calls us to bond with others in partnership and follow the signposts together with the purpose of doing the best we can to Be Love and express it in the world in our own unique ways.
On March 15, Mercury ends its unusually long stay in Aquarius, where it has been since January 8, and enters Pisces where it will remain through April 3. As it joins the Sun, Venus and Neptune in Pisces, Mercury amplifies the shift to a more subjective and feeling-based way of operating. Mercury in Pisces holistically scouts the farthest reaches of consciousness to bring back news of the unknown. As the planet of communication in the sign of the poet, its normal attention to detail becomes diffused as does our manner of perceiving and speaking that which we are experiencing. This abundance of Pisces energy sensitizes us to the flood of information we receive from all corners of existence, which can make us vulnerable to agents of chaos if we are not able to discern the quality of consciousness therein. It helps to discern whether it makes that fire deep down inside burn just a bit brighter or snuffs it out.
The New Moon/Venus/Neptune conjunction was also in sextile to Pluto and the Sun moves into its exact alignment with Pluto on March 16. The new lunar cycle is thus infused with a call to delve into the unconscious and bring to light whatever we find. There is much we don’t know about what is in the deepest recesses of our psyche, which is like a “black box” from which we take for granted all that emanates, including our feelings, insights, creative impulses and inherent abilities. It contains the frontier of space and consciousness as well as all that is “dark,” the macabre, life threatening, fearful memories of experiences that are personal as well as universal. Our unconscious holds everything we absorbed as a child, which is our programming that silently directs how we think and operate. The unconscious is immeasurable. It is where we meet the Mystery. It is where we must travel if we are to expand our awareness, which essentially is bringing more and more of our unconscious to consciousness, to find the source of all these things and how we came to experience them.
It takes courage to conquer the fears we encounter when we face the demons of our programming that block us from walking the path of consciousness. And there are very real-world consequences if we don’t that affect all aspects of life. The very battle for democracy we are experiencing now is largely due to so many operating from irrational fears and unconscious programming that believes people who are different threaten life as they know it. This war is being fought with the weapon of fake news that led to real blood being spilled on the floor of the Capitol on January 6 at the hands of Insurrectionists triggered by the myth of voter fraud. The belief that the last U.S. presidential election was “stolen” is fueling an extraordinary drive by Republicans to change election rules designed to disenfranchise persons of color. Racism and white supremacy are still very much alive in our world and are clear manifestations of the soul-sickness of the mass consciousness being fed by the algorithms of social media. These conditions are antithetical to the force of Love, compassion and connectedness that Neptune and Pisces archetypally represent.
On that note, I’ll leave you with a couple quotes from Abraham Lincoln, who had Mercury in Pisces in strong alignment with the transformational outer planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto:
“You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.”
“I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer.”