Due to a confluence of events (I’m out of town and Mercury is turning retrograde causing problems with my web host), my August newsletter will be somewhat delayed. If you’re not already on my mailing list please sign up in the sidebar – you will receive a translation of the Skywatch: Planetary Illuminations information translated into English mailed directly to you each month.
Meanwhile, here is the information for the first week or so of August to tide you through the next few days until the newsletter is released:
August begins just after a New Moon in Leo, and the energy of the element of fire is strong with not only the Sun and Moon in Leo, but Venus as well. With all of this fire energy impelling us towards action, the stationing of Mercury at the beginning of the month as it prepares to turn retrograde on the 4th of August could create more problems than we typically see. Mercury is in Virgo where it likes to be methodical and detail-oriented, and this isn’t always possible when an infusion of fire drives us towards impulsive and reactive behavior, especially when the retrograde turn of Mercury makes it necessary to continually look back over our shoulder.
Just because something is difficult doesn’t mean it’s impossible, and any planet’s job while it is retrograde is to inspire us to deepen our understanding of the domain of that planet. This is as true of Mercury as for any other planet, but because Mercury turns retrograde four times a year it can be a little more annoying in its effect on our personal life. Mercury will transit within a degree of an opposition to Neptune until that aspect culminates on August 8th, so during this time there is a potential for some confusion and lack of clarity as Neptune blurs the boundaries of Mercury’s reason. Mercury’s domain includes short distance travel as well as communication and equipment operation, and all of these areas of life can be affected by Mercury retrograde periods.
Neptune retrogrades back into Aquarius on August 4th for one final passage through that sign before traveling back into its own sign of Pisces. Aquarius is concerned with global matters and is focused on the collective, as well as technology and science. Neptune has been in Aquarius since 1998, when the internet was just beginning to take hold, and during this period technology has become virtually universal and the World Wide Web has lived up to its name. Neptune rules music and other entertainment, all of which has become digital during the time Neptune has traveled through Aquarius.
The intense square from Uranus to Pluto that came last week within a degree of exactitude is separating now and will quickly decrease in intensity. This is the end of the Cardinal Drama which has been at work for the past two years as Uranus, Pluto and Saturn faced off in the cardinal signs of Aries (Uranus), Capricorn (Pluto) and Libra (Saturn). The square of Uranus and Pluto will perfect next year in a climactic burst of change, but for the next few months we have a bit of a break in the action.
On August 1st relationships will take on a glimmer of excitement as Venus trines Uranus, the planet of innovation and new ways of looking at the world. A square of the Sun to Jupiter provides a burst of confidence and good fortune that can help to inspire positive action. There is always a danger here that we will take on more than we can manage, or that we could get into some trouble if we fail to see other viewpoints as Jupiter’s mantle of confidence gets overblown.
Mercury turns retrograde on the 4th and will remain so until it turns direct on August 26th.
Mars leaves the chatty and highly verbal sign of Gemini for Cancer on August 3rd. Mars is the planet of action, and when Mars is in Cancer our motives become much more emotional in nature. Our feelings become more important than ever and serve as the inspiration for our actions. During its first day in Cancer Mars will harmonize in a trine to Neptune (creativity and spiritual connection) and face off in a challenging square against Ceres (self-care and nourishment). Inspiration is high at this time but we may for a few days neglect ourselves and perhaps our loved ones as we charge off in search of that inspiration.
On August 4th Mercury makes a quick sextile to Mars, an excellent day for writing or completing a difficult negotiation (remember Mercury retrograde periods are excellent for re-doing something that was not accomplished the first time around). Mars will provide the fuel to facilitate the transmission of ideas or travel plans. This is also a great day to schedule anything requiring negotiation. The following day (the 5th) is also beneficial as the Sun sextiles Saturn and enhances our focus and ability to create form in our lives, except that a square from Venus to Jupiter could bring about a minor conflict with someone around us.
Mercury, traveling retrograde now, re-enters Leo on the 8th where it will help us to go back over any skipped steps we may have taken in the process of developing our sense of Self. If we are too identified with the ego and less with the Self, Mercury will help to expose areas that are in need for furher work and this is particularly true of the opposition from Mercury to Neptune which culminates that day.
On the 9th we start dealing with a more powerful energy as Mars, the planet that inspires action and self-defense, forms a trine to healing Chiron but squares Uranus, the Radical Rebel. This is quickly followed by an opposition from Mars to Pluto, planet of power and transformation, on the 11th which suggests the potential for powerful acts that help us to create real change in our lives…or alternatively, major power struggles if our lives are out of balance in some way. Mars triggers the square from Uranus to Pluto during this time and reactivates the intensity of that conflict between Uranus rebellion and Pluto power.
Any time Mars is active it becomes more important to engage in vigorous physical activity to help release any extraneous energy that may erupt in unproductive ways.