Astrological Highlights: May 2015

Recently we have experienced how malefic planets, even when they are strong and powerful,  can cause a lot of destruction. The devastating earthquakes in Nepal, that began on April 26th, and the intense riots occurring simultaneously in Baltimore, Maryland in the United States, are manifestations of these malefic energies.

The present conjunction of Mars and Sun in Aries may seem promising at first, with Mars in his own sign and the Sun in exaltation. Mars will always cast an aspect on the 8th sign from itself, which in this case is Scorpio. The challenges that the world are now experiencing come from a very frustrated Saturn in Scorpio. Saturn is receiving the powerful energy from his worst enemies, Mars and the Sun, and this is putting harsh pressure on him. Saturn governs the masses, as well as structure, and Scorpio is a sign of deep transformation which can occur below the surface. Mars will also cast his aspect on the 4th sign from himself, which is Cancer. Cancer governs homes and shelter, and as a result of the earthquake in Nepal thousands of people have lost their lives and many more are now homeless.

Another example of this energy getting out of control has been expressed in Baltimore. Mars is the planet representing the police and the Sun governs power and authority. The aspect of Mars on the eight house from himself and on Saturn (the masses) has caused agitation, anger and frustration which has resulted in riots and situations beyond control.

On the day of the full Moon on May 3rd Mars moves into Taurus. Mars will still aspect Saturn by opposition – Taurus is opposite Scorpio – but this Venus ruled sign has a much more gentle energy than the assertive sign of Aries. However, if you have your rising sign, Moon or Sun in either of these signs (Taurus or Scorpio) you may need to make an extra effort to remain calm and even minded in your personal relationships. Agitation is a possibility. Although on a positive note there is an exchange between Mercury in Taurus and Venus in Gemini which should benefit good communication.

The Sun moves into Taurus on May 15th followed by a new Moon in Taurus on May 18th. Mercury goes retrograde on that same day and will stay retrograde until June 11th. We can all move forward with our lives but during this time it is good to double check schedules and travel arrangements, do a computer back up, etc. The retrograde Mercury in Taurus is in a positive exchange with Venus in Gemini. We should enjoy ourselves during this time; work in the garden, plant flowers, paint and write, or revisit old friends.

Astrological dates to remember for May 2015:

  • Sun moves into Taurus on May 15th
  • Moon is full on May 3rd in Libra and new on May 18th in Taurus
  • Mars transits into Taurus on May 3rd
  • Mercury is retrograde in Taurus between May 18th and June 11th
  • Jupiter remains in Cancer until July
  • Venus moves into Gemini on May 2nd
  • Venus moves into Cancer on May 30th
  • Saturn is still retrograde in Scorpio


Astrological Highlights: April 2015

We are about to experience the first lunar eclipse of 2015 on April 4th, shortly after the first solar eclipse on March 20th. The period between a solar and a lunar eclipse is often intense and will frequently bring a sense of change and transformation both for individuals and for the world at large.

Ask and it will be given; Seek and you will find; Knock and it will be opened to you.

Lunar eclipse on Easter weekend — April 4, 2015

Both the solar eclipse on March 20th and the lunar eclipse on April 4th occur at times that we associate with significant transformation. The solar eclipse took place on the spring equinox and the lunar eclipse occurs this Easter weekend.

The lunar eclipse occurring this Easter is interesting from a historical perspective. It is believed that there was an eclipse during the crucifixion of Christ that took place on Friday, April 3rd, about 2000 years ago.

“Now when the sixth hour had come, it became dark over all the land until the ninth hour.”  

Mark 15:33.

Some people have believed that it was a solar eclipse, while other suggest a lunar eclipse with “a moon that turned to blood”. Others argue that no total eclipse can last as long as three hours and that perhaps other natural phenomena occurred during this time.

In any case, we will experience a blood moon eclipse on Saturday April 4th. When the Earth casts its shadow on a full Moon and eclipses it the Moon may get a red glow known as a blood moon. This can only happen during a total eclipse. This total lunar eclipse is short in duration and reaches full eclipse at 5 am (PDT) on April 4, 2015. It can be seen in western North America, eastern Asia, the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand.

From an historical perspective, one of the most transformative events for humanity took place on the original Easter about 2000 years ago. The day after Good Friday, was a time of loss and sorrow. However, Christ’s resurrection the following day was a time of great joy and victory of spirit over matter.

One may ponder upon the hidden meaning of the timing of these eclipses. Perhaps their timing can serve as a symbolic reminder that we are moving towards an age where humanity eventually will experience a higher consciousness.

What should you do during an eclipse?

Most astrologers reccommend that we do not initiate important activities during eclipses. The time is much more suitable for contemplation and silence. Honoring the inner life is also appropriate for those commemorating the drama that took place 2000 years ago and the mystical life of a great master.

Who will be most effected by the lunar eclipse?

Virgos may especially be influenced by the eclipse on April 4th with the Moon and Rahu transiting this sign. The Sun is opposite the Moon in Pisces, a sign that can express compassion, universal ideals and sacrifice. Mercury is very close to Ketu, also in Pisces, and Mercury expresses intuitive and visual contemplation rather than intellectual analyses in this position.

The planetary energies will become more stable during the second part of April.

Aries is powerful this April

People with their Ascendant, Sun or Moon in Aries might feel more energetic and confident than usual during April. Mars is the ruler of Aries and he will be transiting through his own sign for the entire month. This is a good position for Mars and Mars stays in Aries until May2nd. Mars will be joined by Mercury on April 11th and the Sun becomes exalted in Aries on April 14th.  Aries are the initiators and this can be a good time for starting somethin new. However, Saturn in the 8th house from Aries may bring up unexpected obstacles.

Venus in Taurus brings creativity

People with their Ascendant, Sun or Moon in Taurus will benefit from having Venus in its own sign from April 6th and until May 2nd. Venus can express itself creatively in Taurus and knows how to enjoy the good things in life. When Mercury joins Venus in Taurus on April 26 things may get even better, though the aspect from Saturn on Venus can cause restrictions.

Jupiter changes gears

Jupiter will end his retrograde movement on April 8th and will station at 18 degrees Cancer until the end of the month. If you have any planets on or near this degree in any of the water signs, you will feel Jupiter’s influence quite strongly this month.


Astrological dates to remember for April 2015

April 4th: Lunar eclipse in Virgo

April 6th: Venus moves into Taurus

April 8th: Jupiter goes direct in Cancer

April 11th: Mercury joins Mars in Aries

April 14th: Sun joins Mars and Mercury in Aries

April 18th: New Moon in Aries

April 26th: Mercury moves into Taurus



Astrological Highlights: March 2015

Rahu and Ketu Vedic Astrology - serpantMarch 2015: a month of sweeping changes

Spring is a time of change. We can experience these changes in nature and all around us. In addition to the transition of the seasons, astrological influences this coming month suggest that other changes might be in store as well. On March 20th, the day of the spring equinox, we will experience a full solar eclipse. A lunar eclipse takes place a short time later, on April 4th. The eclipses remind us that change and transformation, life and death, are also a part of life.

The total solar eclipse on March 20th can be seen from the Faroe Islands (near Iceland) and Svalbard (near Greenland). Greenland, Iceland, Europe, the Middle East, northern Africa and northwest Asia get to witness part of the eclipse. A solar eclipse always happens on a new moon and this new moon is a “super moon”, which means it is close to earth and can have a strong influence upon it.

The eclipse takes place at 5’ 23” degrees in the sign of Pisces. The new Moon and the Sun are joined in Pisces by Ketu, Mars and Uranus. The house that is represented by Pisces in your personal chart is likely to be an area in your life undergoing change.

Ketu plays a significant role this month

The lunar nodes are both very active this month–especially Ketu in Pisces. Ketu is also in the company of other planets, many of whom will be transiting over Ketu.

Ketu is the keeper of the book of past and present karma. He reminds us that we have issues from the past that we need to deal with. He wants to bring us enlightenment and freedom, but Ketu can also be immersed in darkness and carries all our emotional baggage.

Rahu and Ketu are symbolically represented by a serpent. Rahu is the head– he is the thinker. Ketu is the tail, he acts instinctively, and he is portrayed without a head. A dark and headless Ketu can do awful things. Beheadings, assassinations, and burnings of innocent people are all acts of headless ignorance. Ketu is a fiery planet that can cause fear and destruction, as well as loss and sorrow.

However, the higher nature of Ketu wants to destroy our ignorance. His true wish is to give us knowledge and liberation. Ketu governs instinct and intuition and looks beyond the restrictions of the mind. He wants us to think with the heart.

Rahu is always opposite Ketu and is very different from Ketu in his expression.  Ketu in Pisces is idealistic. Rahu in Virgo (as He is now placed) is practical, analytical and tries to keep control through intellectual analyses.

Rahu transits a nakshatra called Hasta during the month of March. Hasta is placed in Virgo. Hasta means “hand” and the hand reflects our destiny. At the time of the lunar eclipse on April 4th, Mercury will be in the sign of his debilitation (Pisces) and in exact conjunction with Ketu. There may be some challenges in areas represented by Mercury at this time: communication, trade, business or education.

Uranus and Pluto

Although the outer planets Uranus and Pluto are not traditionally included in Vedic astrology, they are used in both Western astrology and neo-Vedic astrology. Their influence has validity and it can be helpful to examine them.

Ketu can act quickly and unexpectedly. The outer planet Uranus is also transiting Pisces. Uranus is rebellious, he too can act in sudden and unexpected ways.

Uranus and Pluto have been in a square relationship with one another since 2012. They will be in an exact 90 degree angle between March 11 – 28.  Pluto represents power and transformation. The inharmonious relationship between Uranus and Pluto is creating drastic changes and upheaval.

The presence of Ketu also suggests deep past and present karmic issues that need to be worked out. This is a time when many people in the world are affected by political and social forces beyond their control. It may be both painful and chaotic.

Some people may be experiencing the need to let go of something or someone that has been very precious to them. The present Venus/Ketu conjunction sometimes indicates the loss of a loved one. It can also indicate a need to simplify, to be flexible and to let go of attachments to things that are no longer needed. It may also indicate a reconnection to a past relationship.

This is a great time for psychological healing and therapy work as it puts us in touch with our past and can give us insight and the courage to change. The exalted Jupiter in Cancer casting a beneficial aspect on Pisces is helpful in this respect.

“Life is always unsafe and unstable, like a drop of water on a lotus leaf. The company of a divine personage, even for a moment, can save and redeem us.”

–Sankaracharya, an illumined sage of the eighth century; quoted from the last chapter of The Holy Science by Swami Sri Yukteswar


Astrological Dates to remember for March 2015:

March 1st     Ketu conjunct Venus

March 6th     Ketu conjunct Mars

March 8th     Mercury moves into Aquarius

March 12th   Venus moves into Aries

March 14th   Saturn goes retrograde   at 10’51” Scorpio

March 14th   Sun moves to Pisces

March 20th   Solar eclipse and new Moon

March 23rd   Mars moves into Aries, stays until May 4th

March 30th   Sun conjunct Ketu

March 11 – 28   Uranus and Pluto in an exact 90 degree angle




Astrological Highlights: February 2015


During February, March and all through the first part of April many planets are in water signs.

The water signs are: Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces. The water element stands for liberation and transformation. Water also represents feelings and emotions.

Ketu and Uranus

Ketu, the south node of the moon, is transiting the star constellation Revati in the water sign Pisces. Pisces is the last of the twelve signs and Revati is the last of the 27 lunar mansions. Revati is the end of a cycle, and within Revati lies the seeds for a new beginning. Planets that are transiting Revati reveals major transformation. Ketu represents our past karma.

Ketu in Revati is joined by the outer planet Uranus. Ketu always moves in a retrograde motion. Uranus and Ketu meet in an exact conjunction on February 1st. Ketu can suddenly and unexpectedly release his energy and the outer planet Uranus is erratic and rebellious. Their combination can be chaotic and we have experienced their energy in January as the two planets were approaching one another. The terror attacks in France and other disturbing acts embodies this chaotic and shocking energy.

Ketu and Jupiter

Pisces and the star constellation Revati also express spiritual and idealistic energy.The same planetary combination (Ketu/Uranus) can also give us deep and profound insight. Jupiter, the ruler of Pisces, is transiting another water sign; Cancer. Both Jupiter and Ketu are influencing one another by a trine aspect. We can experience deep feelings, intuitive wisdom and guidance during this time of transformation and change.

Jupiter in Cancer tends to make us feel connected to our roots, family and country. While Jupiter is expansive, Ketu’s influence is one of cutting off and separating. At this time we are experiencing a rise in nationalism such as in Russia as well as in Ukraine. In Greece and Spain we see a desire for independence from the EU and in America and many European countries we see the rise of political parties favoring strict immigration policies.

Mercury and Jupiter Retrograde

The star constellation Revati is ruled by the planet Mercury and is in a sign, Pisces, ruled by Jupiter. Mercury and Jupiter are both currently retrograde and opposite each other. There is a need to reflect and analyse our present and changing circumstances. Mercury is doing some serious thinking and is involved in the structure and organisation of  trade and communication systems, especially while transiting Capricorn. Mercury will go direct on February 11th

Mars and Venus enter Pisces

Saturn is transiting Scorpio, yet another water sign. Scorpio is a deep and profound sign of transformation but Saturn can resist changes and may even block them. Scorpio has two rulers; Mars and Ketu. Mars will enter Pisces on February 11th which means that both rulers of Scorpio will then transit Pisces. Venus will enter Pisces on February 15th. Venus is exalted in Pisces but will likely not enjoy the company of Mars, Ketu and Uranus, three malefics with highly charged energy. In March the Sun will join them as well and on March 20th there will be a Solar eclipse adding further indications of transformation and change.

Remember that Ketu is a planet for yogis as it indicates non-attachment and spiritual wisdom. Stay centered within!


Astrological Highlights: January 2015

Yogananda quote - new yearJanuary 2015 begins with many planets in earth signs. Earth signs place an emphasis on stability, security and material productivity.

Planetary Activity in the Earth Signs

This month begins with five out of the nine planets in the three earth signs (Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn). On January 1st, the Moon is transiting Taurus, the sign of its exaltation. Rahu stays in Virgo for another year, and Venus, Mercury and Mars are currently in Capricorn. An exalted Jupiter is casting a favorable aspect on the planets in Capricorn, bringing us an auspicious start to 2015.

An Auspicious Full Moon on January 4th

On January 4th there is a full Moon in Gemini. The full Moon can be seen shortly after 8 pm PST in the star constellation Punarvasu, ruled by Jupiter. This is a very good time to focus on your positive goals and to pray for the wisdom to bring them to fruition.

On the day of the full Moon, Mars moves from Capricorn into Aquarius where he will stay until February 11th. Mars has been strong and exalted in Capricorn but under strong Saturnian influences. Mars in Aquarius is still exchanging signs with Saturn in Scorpio (the two planets are influencing and strengthening one another by being in each others signs) but unfortunately Mars will no longer receive the favorable aspect that he had from Jupiter while in Capricorn. Therefore Mars is more troubled. He will also cast an aspect on Rahu, the co-ruler of Aquarius. There can be political unrest and eruptions with this position of Mars. Health matters can come into focus during the latter part of this month.

New Moon on January 20th

During the new Moon on January 20th, we will see a great deal of activity in Capricorn. The Sun joins Mercury and Venus in Capricorn on January 14th. At the time of the new Moon, we see four planets in this sign: the Moon, the Sun, Mercury and Venus.

Serious Analytical Thinking & Reorganization

Mercury goes retrograde in Capricorn from January 21st until February 11th. Capricorn is a sign of organization and structure and during this time there may be a need for rethinking and restructuring.

Saturn’s Influence in 2015

Even though the year begins with a favorable astrological climate it is important to remember that Saturn, the ruler of Capricorn is transiting Scorpio throughout this year and next year. Saturn, a planet governing structure, durability and time, is not very comfortable in a sign expressing transformation and change.  Saturn’s aspect on the earth sign Capricorn, from the sign of Scorpio, points to changes and challenges regarding structure and organization. For now, Jupiter’s aspect on Saturn, and on Capricorn, is improving matters.


Astrological Highlights: December 2014 

yogananda christmas quote

The water signs are well represented as we move from November to December. In fact, on December 1st there are seven planets transiting water signs.

A time for patience & discipline

Mars in Capricorn is exchanging signs with Saturn in Scorpio for the entire month. This makes both planets strong but also requires patience and discipline. The quick and impulsive Mars will be slowed down and restricted by slow moving Saturn which can result in frustrations and delays. However, if we discipline ourselves and allow Saturn to guide the activity of Mars much can be accomplished. Be patient, even-minded and do good work!

Blessings from a benefic Jupiter

A benefic Jupiter aspects all of the planets,except Rahu, and helps to keep a positive spirit. During the entire month we find both Jupiter and Mars in their signs of exaltation: Cancer and Capricorn. 

People with Cancer or Capricorn rising signs have two exalted planets in their first and seventh house at this time (self and relationships). The signs ruled by Mars (Aries and Scorpio) also benefit by having their ruler exalted and aspected by Jupiter.

Jupiter goes retrograde on December 8th

If you are awake during the night or in the early morning before dawn on December 8th (PDT)  you may see this beautiful planet at his turning point of the year. Jupiter will be stationary then, and for a few days prior. The slow shift into a retrograde motion occurs at noon on December 8th at 28’14 in Cancer. (PDT)

When Jupiter is stationary and retrograde he often behaves in a non-traditional way. He is strong and close to earth but he thinks differently. He looks at situations from a different viewpoint and can give advice that is unconventional. We are influenced by our past and may find that we need to address something in a new way.

This can be a time to reflect and place more emphasis on inner awareness and growth. Generally, when a planet goes retrograde it is better to finish projects that we have already undertaken rather than starting something new. Jupiter goes direct on April 8th, 2015 (PST)

Full Moon on December 6th

If you get up before sunrise on December 6th, you will see the full Moon.  A full moon occurs at 4:27 am (PDT).

The Moon will be bright and strong in its own star constellation (nakshatra) Rohini. Rohini means red and red is the color for passion. This star constellation is passionate and restless, favoring creativity and comfort.

Venus, Mercury and Sun move into Sagittarius

Four planets – Saturn, Mercury, Sun and Venus – are transiting in Scorpio during the beginning of the month but only Saturn will remain in Scorpio by the end of the month. The other three planets move into Sagittarius during December. We want to be observant of the effect of these planets as they move into Sagittarius. The transit at the junction point between water signs and fire signs can be challenging and unstable. 

Venus will move into Sagittarius on December 5th.

Mercury moves into Sagittarius on December 13th.

The Sun will move into Sagittarius on December 15th.

New Moon on the Winter Solstice

The time before the New Moon is called Amavasya. It is the darkest night of the month. The New Moon occurs on December 21st at 5:36 pm (PDT) This is the time when the Moon begins to move away from the Sun and it gradually becomes brighter. We will gradually see the light of the Moon return again.

Winter solstice (on December 21st) marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. From this day on the light will increase and the day becomes longer.

With both luminaries at their darkest, this is a wonderful time to reflect, meditate and tune into the spiritual message of Christmas.

Happy Holidays and Christmas Blessings,


Astrological Highlights: November 2014

Scorpio Vedic AstrologyThe month of November is associated with transformation and change. In the Northern hemisphere the leaves are falling and the nights are longer. Astrologically, this month brings a shift of planets moving from Libra to Scorpio. November begins with the exalted Saturn, Venus and Sun in Libra but on November 24th there will be four planets in Scorpio: Sun, Saturn, Venus and Mercury. Saturn’s transit into Scorpio is the most significant astrological event this month. Saturn will move into Scorpio on November 2nd.

Saturn leaves Libra

Saturn spends roughly 2 ½ years in each sign. He first entered Libra in November 2011 and, apart from a few months when he retrograded back into Virgo, has been in Libra ever since. When Saturn transits a sign, there are usually aspects of the sign that we need to work with. For example, we have seen a number of challenges related to Libra while Saturn has been in this sign.

Saturn is a friend of Venus, the ruler of Libra, and he is comfortable in this sign. However, we do need to consider that during Saturn’s stay in Libra he was joined by Rahu for a long period of time. This was not an easy combination. Mars also made an unusually long transit first in Virgo, where he is not very comfortable, and then in Libra, during Saturn’s transit in Libra.

Saturn moves into Scorpio

Saturn comes into Scorpio on November 2nd and will stay in this sign until January 26, 2017.

What can we expect from Saturn’s transit in Scorpio? Saturn is not in his favorite sign, in fact, Saturn and Mars (the ruler of Scorpio) are enemies.

In order to understand what this transit might bring let us examine the sign of Scorpio:

Understanding Scorpio

Scorpio is the astrological sign reflecting transformation. Two powerful planets, Mars and Ketu, are both rulers of this fixed sign. Fixed signs are firm and the energy of Scorpio is intense. We can sense a powerful nature when people have planets strongly placed in Scorpio.

This is a water sign, and therefore feeling oriented, and people with planets in Scorpio may deal with emotions that are too strong for their own comfort. Scorpios also have a tendency to want to be in control.

Scorpios prefer privacy, they may even be shy. Just like the scorpion they can go underground. They tend to be secretive and can have a hidden agenda. This sign can produce both investigators and spies.

People with planets in Scorpio are analytical and intuitive. They can see things that others overlook. Their interest in the unknown makes them good researchers and diagnosticians. They often have an interest in the metaphysical.

Scorpios are often conservative and will try to hold on to what they have. In this sign we find a struggle between darkness and light, and Scorpio can manifest a wide range of people: from the worst of criminals to the holiest of Saints.

Scorpio relates to the eighth house

Scorpio is the eighth sign of the zodiac and has many similarities with the eighth house in a chart. This house also represents transformation and that which is unknown. The hidden nature of this house/sign can manifest scandals (when secrets are revealed), as well as attract enemies and disease. It can also attract the opposite: health, healing, yoga and psychology.

This house/sign is also indicative of our values and resources; banking, insurance, inheritance and pensions come under its domain. It governs life and afterlife.

What can we expect from Saturn’s transit in Scorpio?

Saturn in a sign ruled by Mars may cause frustration and anger. Mars is impulsive and quick to action while Saturn is slow and careful. However, a highly benefic aspect from Jupiter in Cancer will aid in the process of rightful action. Jupiter remains in Cancer until July 2015 and will cast his favorable aspect upon Saturn until then.

Mars is technical and strategic while Saturn gives discipline and control. Saturn in Scorpio favors engineering and computer science. Technological advances can be made.

This is also a time that will benefit the practice of yoga and massage. Saturn can go deep in Scorpio and benefits psychological work as well as philosophical studies.

Saturn in Scorpio puts focus on underground activities. We might experience increased activity regarding terrorism, espionage and earthquakes. We will likely experience increased control and as a result the police, the military and the secret service may have more power. Issues of personal integrity may arise. There may be increased control regarding taxes.

Issues of aging, security and pensions will likely need to be addressed. The work of banks and insurance companies may undergo changes. We will need to take a deeper look at our resources. There may be also be a focus on oil.

In order to understand Saturn’s impact on us as individuals, we need to know which house is represented by Scorpio in our charts. The area represented by this house will be an area of increased focus and responsibility.

The Vedic Sun is in Scorpio between November 16th and December 15th

The Sun will join Saturn in Scorpio on November 16th. An exact Sun/Saturn conjunction will occur on November 18th at 1’55 in Scorpio.

The Sun and Saturn are bitter enemies. The Sun governs authority and Saturn rules democracy. Perhaps there will be clashes between authorities and groups of people during this time. Venus joins Saturn in Scorpio on November 12th and Mercury enters this sign on November 24th.

Mars and Saturn will both be strong

It is important to understand the position of Mars, the ruler of Scorpio, while Saturn is in Scorpio.

Mars is in Sagittarius until November 27th when he moves into Capricorn. Mars is not only exalted in Capricorn, he also exchanges signs with Saturn. (Mars is in Saturn’s sign and Saturn is in a sign ruled by Mars). This makes both planets very strong favoring discipline and perseverance, and work which is approached in a methodical and organized way. Mars will remain in Capricorn until January 4th, 2015.

Befriend Saturn, and make good use of this time of transition!



Astrological Highlights: October 2014

RahuOctober is an intense month with the second pair of lunar- and solar eclipses happening this year. The eclipses take place on October 8th and 23rd. The partial solar eclipse on October 23rd can be seen in much of North America and in East Asia.  Mercury goes retrograde and will transit over Rahu twice during this month.

Sun / Rahu conjunction

As we enter the month of October the attention first goes to Virgo, the sign of health and service. This is the sign where the Sun resides at this time. The planet representing vitality, authority and leadership is approaching Rahu, the north node of the Moon. On October 12th their conjunction is exact.

The Sun and Rahu are enemies. The bright light of the Sun disturbs the shadowy nature of Rahu. However, Rahu has the power to overcome the Sun by casting a shadow over his light.Their incompatibility can result in power issues, as well as anxiety and fear.

Mercury goes retrograde

Mercury, the ruler of Virgo, goes retrograde between October 4th and October 25th. He will transit over Rahu twice during this time: these transits will be exact on October 21st and 29th. Although Rahu likes the energy of Mercury, and Mercury is strong in his own sign Virgo, their conjunction can create confusion. Since Mercury is also retrograde we need to make an extra effort to be clear in our communication. It may be harder to think rationally and to communicate with clarity.

A total lunar eclipse

The full moon and a total lunar eclipse takes place in the sign of Pisces on October 8th. The Moon is situated between Ketu, who connects us with the past, and Uranus who is quick, unpredictable and rebellious. Both planets can manifest sudden changes. Ketu can manifest  rejection. Sometimes we need to examine and reflect on the past but with Ketu and Uranus so close to the Moon changes may happen so fast  that we do not have time to think. We are often unprepared. The position of Jupiter in the sign of Cancer, ruled by the Moon, is well placed and strongly influences the Moon both by aspect and by exchanging signs. This is positive and can enhance our humanitarian and spiritual ideals.

Sun and Venus in Libra

The Sun moves into the sign of his debilitation, Libra, on October 17th and joins his enemy Saturn. Venus joins them both on October 19th which could greatly improve the situation except that Venus will be very close to the Sun for the rest of the month, a condition known as combustion.

Mars enters Sagittarius

The planetary energies become more difficult when Mars moves into Sagittarius on October 18th. Mars will no longer receive Jupiter’s benefic aspect and is instead aspected by Saturn. Mars will now aspect Jupiter and Ketu. During the time of the solar eclipse and throughout the month Jupiter stands alone receiving the energy of three malefic planets: Mars, Saturn and Ketu.

The solar eclipse

The solar eclipse takes place on October 23rd at around 6 degrees Libra in the star constellation Chitra. The main star in Chitra is called Spica. The eclipse will dim the light from this otherwise bright and beautiful star reminding us that sometimes we need to search and dig deep in order to find true light and beauty. We can struggle in darkness but even if something is hidden from sight it does not mean it is not there. The need for self-realization becomes stronger.

As October comes to an end this will also mark the end of Saturn’s transit through Libra during the past two and a half years. Saturn moves into Scorpio on November 2nd. More about that next month!


Astrological Highlights: September 2014

The conjunction between Mars & Saturn ends in early September

The exact conjunction between the malefic planets Mars and Saturn on August 25th reflects some of the tension the world is experiencing as we enter the month of September. During the end of August we have seen a great deal of violence, unrest and natural disasters.

As many as 1,000 Russian troops entered Ukraine on Thursday August 28. We experienced an earthquake near San Francisco on August 24th and on the night of Thursday, August 28, Iceland’s volcanic system started erupting after weeks of earthquakes in the region. On the other side of the world in Papua New Guinea, a large volcano began erupting on August 29th, with smoke and ash spewing out as high as 18 kilometers.

An intense time for Aries & Scorpio

People with Aries or Scorpio Ascendants (Vedic) or those who have many planets in these signs may be experiencing intense situations in their lives during this time. This is because Mars rules Aries and Scorpio, and his conjunction with Saturn reflects this pent up and explosive energy that the world is experiencing. This explosive energy is made stronger by the recent conjunction between Saturn and Rahu when things first got stirred up.

Mars’ energy becomes less strained after September 5

On September 5th, Mars will move from Libra and into the sign of Scorpio. Mars will be much more at ease in a sign that he rules and without the company of Saturn.

However, Scorpions, the symbol for Scorpio,  live in a hole underground and much of Scorpios activity takes place underneath the surface, where it is secretive and hidden from sight. Maybe there will be some surprises during this time.

The good news is that Mars in Scorpio will receive a benefic aspect from an exalted Jupiter in Cancer. Unfortunately Jupiter himself is under some stress due to Saturn’s aspect on Jupiter at this time, but hopefully Jupiter can still guide the activity of Mars into a positive direction. Mars will stay in Scorpio for a month and a half.

Full Moon on September 8 is good for Aquarius

The full Moon takes place in Aquarius on September 8th and the new Moon is in Virgo on September 24th. The full moon in Aquarius is very good for the sign Aquarius because there is also an Adhi yoga for Aquarius. Adhi yoga happens when benefic planets are placed in the 6th house (Jupiter), 7th house (Venus) and 8th house (Mercury) from Moon or Lagna. For those with Moon or rising sign in Aquarius, this yoga provides good support.

Many exalted planets during September

Many planets will be in their own signs or in their exalted positions during the month of September. This makes the planets more comfortable. The Sun is in Leo (his own sign) until September 17th when he goes into Virgo. Mercury joins Rahu in the sign of Virgo (Mercury rules Virgo) from September 1st and will stay in this sign until September 20th.

Rahu strengthened as Mercury & Rahu will be in exact conjunction three times

On September 20th Mercury will move into Libra. However, Mercury goes retrograde between  October 5th and October 26th and returns to Virgo on October 16th.  While in Virgo, Mercury will be in an exact conjunction with Rahu three times due to his retrograde movement: on September 17, October 21st and October 29th.

This conjunction benefits Rahu who can use his intelligence with discrimination. Virgo rules health and Rahu rules drugs, perhaps we will see some progress in treating diseases such as Ebola. For people experiencing their Rahu dasha this conjunction of Rahu and Mercury can be productive.

Venus joins Rahu in Virgo

Venus will join Rahu in Virgo between September 25th and October 19th. In Virgo, Venus becomes debilitated. The reason for the debilitation is that Venus governs love, relationships, enjoyment and comfort and the sign Virgo is mental, analytical with a tendency to be critical. However, the exchange between Venus in Virgo and Mercury in Libra (they are in each others signs) strengthens both planets and improves matters significantly.

New Moon on September 24

The new Moon on September 24 lines up with the lunar nodes. This could indicate a darker energy. The new Moon day is also known as Amavasya–the darkest day of the lunar cycle. This is an excellent day for fasting and introspection.

Enjoy the overall lighter energy of this September!

Astrological Highlights: August 2014

Astrological Sign LibraAs we enter the month of August, the world needs Libra’s skill of negotiation and diplomacy. However, the continued presence of malefics in Libra throughout August keeps this sign from expressing itself positively. We can look forward to September, which will bring an easing of tension for Libra, in addition to relief for Scorpio and Aries.

We continue to see a stressed Libra

Libra is a sign desiring balance and harmony. This peace loving sign has been put under stress during Saturn’s two and a half year stay in Libra. Saturn in Libra teaches us about the importance of cooperation and diplomacy. On his own, Saturn’s disciplined energy blends well with the energy of Libra. However, for the past year and a half Saturn has been accompanied by Rahu, and their combined presence in Libra has brought the world political issues to be faced.

Rahu moved into Virgo, and away from Saturn, on July 13th. Only a day later, on July 14th,  Saturn was joined by Mars, another malefic planet.

Mars first entered Libra in February, then went retrograde into Virgo, and recently re-entered Libra on July 14. With Mars returning and completing his journey in Libra, we are experiencing a continuation of some of the challenges initiated in the spring.

The combination of Saturn & Mars can be explosive

Saturn and Mars have been together in Libra since July 14. Saturn and Mars are enemies, and their energies do not mingle well. Mars is quick and action oriented and gets blocked by a slow and thorough Saturn. The conjunction of these two planets can cause the energy of Mars to become explosive and make Saturn feel uncomfortable when his security is threatened. Mars can be very strategic and bold, and Saturn is organized and methodical. A combination of Mars and Saturn is sometimes seen in war like situations.

All 9 planets aspect the Moon or Cancer during the full moon

The full Moon on August 10th takes place in Capricorn in the star constellation Dhanista.

The ruler of Capricorn is Saturn and Dhanista is ruled by Mars. This combination of rulership by Saturn and Mars in Dhanista often will express a sense of duty. Sometimes there is a struggle between a sense of duty and egoic desires, but Mars is also a warrior capable to fight and defend that which is his duty to defend. The symbol of Dhanishta is a drum and a flute. In this nakshatra we tend to move and sing our song to someone else’s rhythm.

The full Moon on August 10th will have four planets in Cancer: Jupiter, Venus, Mercury and the Sun. All of the nine planets aspect the Moon or Cancer, the sign ruled by the Moon. The ashtamsha Moon can indicate a sudden change.

On the day of the full Moon, Mars is opposite the degree of the Solar eclipse that took place on April 29th, at 14:48 Aries. The energy of an eclipse lingers and can be re-activated by transits such as this one. The eclipse on April 29th was challenging and we can expect to feel some of this energy again.

Ask for inner guidance

The new moon in Leo on August 25th takes place when the conjunction between Mars and Saturn becomes exact in Libra. (22’35”)

The nakshatra (star constellation) where the conjunction between Mars and Saturn takes place is called Vishakha. Transformation takes place in this nakshatra and Jupiter (the ruler of Vishakha) brings wisdom on this new journey towards change.

There is a Jupiter/Venus combination because the star constellation Vishaka (ruled by a currently exalted Jupiter) is placed in Libra (ruled by Venus). Both these planets are related to guidance and counseling.

During the new Moon, the Sun and Moon will be in a star constellation called Magha. Magha means ‘mighty’ or ‘great’. The deity for Magha is Pitris – the forefathers of humanity whose mission is to guide their children, especially during difficult times. It is good to ask for inner guidance during this time.

While the nakshatra Vishaka brings transformation, Magha brings guidance. During this time of transformation, the world needs the wisdom and guidance that Magha, Jupiter and Venus can give.

An easing of tension for Scorpio & Aries on September 4th

Mars moves out of Libra and into his own sign, Scorpio on September 4th. This will improve things for those with rising signs or significant planets in Scorpio and Aries, as these two signs are both ruled by Mars.

This transition will also make Saturn more comfortable in Libra, since he will no longer be in the company of malefic planets. This change will improve things for Capricorn and Aquarius and allow Libra to express his diplomatic skills more easily.

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All text and images © Copyright 2012-14 Elisabeth Preston. All rights reserved.

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