Photo: Partial Lunar Eclipse seen from Alexandroupolis, Greece on August 16, 2008
(photo by George Tarsoudis, posted on SpaceWeather.com)
Highlighted Aspects this Week
MON: Partial Lunar Eclipse/Full Moon 11:10am PDT (6:10pm GMT)
WED: Sun quincunx Pluto, Mars sesquiquadrate Chiron
THU: Mercury sextile Venus, Mars quincunx Neptune, Sun sextile Jupiter
FRI: Mercury conjunct Vesta, Uranus semisquare Neptune, Neptune trine Ceres, Venus trine Neptune, Venus conjunct Ceres
SAT: Mercury stations retrograde (6:00pm PDT)
SUN: Mercury trine Pallas Athene, Sun trine Saturn
OUR PARTIAL LUNAR ECLIPSE on Monday has gotten very little press in comparison to the “Great American” Total Solar Eclipse coming up on August 21 — but we do ourselves disservice if we discount or ignore the intentions of tomorrow’s event. It occurs at 11:10am PDT (6:10pm GMT), when the Moon in Aquarius is exactly opposite the Sun in Leo, and provides an opportunity (and the incentive) for us to clear out old patterns and behaviors that have limited our creative and joyful participation in life.
The Moon is conjunct the fixed star Alnair at the time of the eclipse. Roderick Kidston wrote in his book The Magic of the Stars that Alnair:
“… points to spiritual aspirations, even abilities, and is one of the truly artistic and inspirational stars. It has a very refined and often beautiful impact, but this superior rarity and polish are not always useful, practical influences. It fosters such a preoccupation with the higher planes that it can be hard to come down to this earthly one and simply get on with the everyday business of being here now.”
THE LOFTIER QUALITIES associated with Alnair are strengths that we can draw upon now — but since this is a karmic “South Node” eclipse, we also must look at which of these characteristics we are being asked to leave behind. Certainly not our spiritual inspirations, or our “sensitivity and openness,” two other qualities Kidston assigns to the star.
But Kidston also explains that “The trickiest part of this star is the way it often heightens sensitivity to the point of hypersensitivity.” When we think about what might keep us from becoming more involved in life — the evolutionary development that the North Node in Leo requires — or in supporting a cause that we believe in, for many of us it comes down to feeling overwhelmed by the enormity of the problems, or by the level of pain and suffering we might encounter if we step into greater activism.
I like the advice Kidston gives on how to work with Alnair’s proclivity for escapism or avoidance:
“Cultivate your talents and burnish them as brightly as you can, for then you can become a clear open channel for the exalted energies of much higher powers and fulfill your spiritual ideals. When you overcome your natural shyness and open up a little, you can expand like a flower and find the world isn’t always so scary after all: not everyone or everything presents a danger to be avoided.”
OTHER COMPONENTS of the eclipse chart reveal a bit more about how this Lunar Eclipse will be working with us, both in the coming week and the coming months. Here’s a list of the most significant aspects:
- Sun conjunct Mars in Leo, both trine Saturn: This trio of planets in powerful and positive relationship with each other assists us in having the energy to invest in activities that add meaning and creative fulfillment to our lives.
- Mercury conjunct the asteroid Vesta in Virgo, both opposing Neptune: We find here the need to balance practicality with idealism, and to make a new commitment to how we want to be of service to the higher good.
- Jupiter square Pluto: An emphasis on power struggles and legal battles, as we grapple with how best to respond to the misuse of authority. Can we channel our own power effectively and with integrity?
- Uranus semisquare Neptune: We are reassessing a pattern of response that we became aware of in the early 1990s, when these two planets were aligned. How did we react then to issues that may have arisen suddenly and unexpectedly? How did we move beyond disillusionment or denial and come to terms with the changes that were occurring? How do we apply what we learned back then to situations that are unfolding now?
- Venus conjunct Ceres in Cancer, both trine Neptune: This is the “soft spot” of the eclipse chart, a subtle and uplifting influence that expands our compassion and caring, and our ability to transcend our personal needs and to give selflessly. Through these planets we open our hearts and our psychic sensitivity in ways that enable us to become the healers we are meant to be.
So, not too shabby for an “also-ran” eclipse, eh?
THE SABIAN SYMBOL for the Lunar Eclipse is quite intriguing:
“A big businessman at his desk: The ability to organize the many aspects of an enterprise involving a large group of human beings.”
On a practical level, this symbol is encouraging, telling us that this eclipse might assist organization and cooperation among those who work in political or organizational realms. Astrologer Dane Rudhyar, in his interpretation of this symbol, wrote that:
“The New Age should be one in which we learn to use the power generated by human togetherness and group interplay — that is, to use it harmoniously for the welfare of the whole of which all individuals are parts, humanity and the planet Earth.
And, knowing that we have the “big eclipse” just two weeks away, I was also interested to read these words near the end of Rudhyar’s description:
“The concept of management needs to be totally reevaluated if humankind is to actualize the spiritual potentialities implied in the evolutionary transformation JUST AHEAD.” (emphasis mine)
A FINAL NOTE on this week’s planetary events: Mercury goes retrograde in Virgo at 6:00pm PDT on Saturday (1:00am GMT on Sunday). This retrograde phase happens three (or four) times a year, and life goes on, even if we have a few extra detours or communication glitches along the way. Mercury will still be moving backward at the time of the Solar Eclipse on August 21, which means we might not fully comprehend the impact of the eclipse right away.
But, what is most significant about this particular retrograde phase is that on September 5, when Mercury comes to a standstill and then turns to go forward, the planet will be at the same degree as the August 21 eclipse (28+ degrees Leo). It sounds like Hermes (Mercury) needs to run back to grab some bit of information that he forgot or disregarded originally. Once he has it in hand, hopefully we can all — finally — start to make progress.
IF YOUR BIRTHDAY IS THIS WEEK: This is a powerful year for you, Leo. You are coming to terms with certain aspects of your personality that have interfered with your ability to live your life in the now, with the open heart and joy you long to feel. You have the courage, the discipline, the awareness, and the sensitivity to make great progress in whatever creative endeavor you choose to engage. You are learning that your true power is in your love, whether you are working in personal, professional, or spiritual realms.
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