Astrological Forecast Overview
This month is colored by a relatively drama-free Mercury retrograde in the midst of rather pleasant planetary contacts. If you’re not in a hurry, this can be a lovely interlude that we can use to create, restore, and rejuvenate. The inner process is one of reflection, as the theme is set by Mercury’s opposition to Neptune just as it turns retrograde—reflection from others more than internal.
There’s one caveat: Mars enters Cancer on August 3, the last of the fast-moving planets to do so, giving us one more kick forward in case we haven’t blasted through all the obstacles to our path with heart. It will tick off the planets in the Cardinal Cross (Uranus, Pluto, Saturn) August 9-10 and 25. But without the Sun and its companions to augment the energy, we feel less urgency. Still, it is the last chance we have to use our emotional drive (Cancer’s modus operandi) to create what we want, at least until mid-September, when Venus reaches Libra.
The fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) have had a long leisurely break from drama, after years of trying times, a dwindling of tension since 2008. The pulse in these signs picks up considerably in August, as our use of their energy gets put to the test through squares to Jupiter in Taurus and Mercury retrograde in Leo.
While these two planets do not interact with each other, they have plenty of separate contacts that bring new considerations out of the woodwork and ensure that our approach to what’s new is our life will end up with something stable and sustainable over time. If you have natal placements in the fixed signs, you will be challenged to make some changes, but what they are may prove elusive until we learn more as Jupiter reaches its retrograde on August 30. As always, life is a work in progress.
We continue to have support from Jupiter and Pluto as they remain super-glued together even though currently separating. In the Earth signs of Taurus and Capricorn, all it takes is the transits through Virgo to bring a powerful force of manifestation into our lives.
Two of the yearly planetary cycles reach the halfway point, Neptune’s on August 22, and Chiron’s on August 26. Jupiter enters its 4-month retrograde period on August 30. Pluto is nearing the end of its retrograde period. The Jupiter-Pluto hand-off opens the door to a period of fertile growth. Rather than the internalized, cathartic processes of this year’s Cardinal Grand Cross, this is a time when we are able to make adjustments in our visible circumstances—or work toward them as Mercury unravels the knots that have been preventing clarity about our path and how to travel it.
Venus travels with the Sun all month, catching up with the Great Luminary on August 16. She softens our experience of otherwise challenging contacts, particularly at the Full Moon. This bodes well for relationships and financial stability, bringing relief from the persistent abrasiveness of the past few months.
Neptune returns to Aquarius for its last hurrah on the August 4. Think you’re so done with that? Well, maybe not! A breath of fresh, dispassionate air is welcomed to lift us out of the drama. The end of the month brings us the Earth Grand Trine of Sun-Venus to Jupiter to Pluto. This brings a potent force of manifestation which, when combined with the intensity of Jupiter’s and Pluto’s stations, allows us to punch through old patterns and structures to create powerful new ones.
(Except as otherwise noted, all interpretations here are based on a natural chart, using the beginning of Aries as the ascendant, and times listed are Pacific Daylight Time (UTC–7).
A “Void Moon” or “Void of Course Moon” (or “VOC moon” for short) makes no significant aspects until it enters the next sign. Its void period is thought to be a poor time for starting new projects or making concerted effort toward existing plans.
According to William Lilly, the Moon in Cancer (Moon’s rulership), Taurus (Moon’s exaltation), Sagittarius and Pisces (signs ruled by Jupiter, the Great Benefic) “performeth somewhat.” Lee Lehmann reports that she has tested this, and “you can take it to the bank.” Another way of putting how this works in an astrological forecast is that, when an action is taken during the void period in one of these signs, you get “unanswered success.” That is, the lack of planetary action prevents your action from being denied.
Daily Astrological Forecast, August 2011
At 1:42 am PT, the Moon enters analytic Virgo. Connections with Neptune and Mercury in the wee hours infuse our dreams with insights into the coming Mercury retrograde process. What do you need to get clear about? Clarity could come now. The Sun reaches its square to Jupiter, posing the question, “Yes, but what are you going to do about it to stabilize it in your life?”
We get the coming five months to answer that question and enact our response. The Moon completes a grand trine with Pluto and Jupiter over the day, a preview of what’s coming later in the month when the Sun and Venus fill in the same gap. With many planets in early degrees, the Moon’s active period ends at 4:38 pm, giving us a long void period, lasting until 3:04 am Wednesday, during which we can rest, play, get caught up, go into inner space, and communicate through the inner realms.
Today’s lone event is Mercury’s station to retrograde. It begins apparent backward motion through the heavens, from 1°12′ Virgo to 18°42′ Leo (August 26). Let the reflective process begin, and you’ll know your direction more precisely by the end of this time. For now, confusion due to incomplete information may be the strongest feature of our experience. Be patient, inquisitive, and imaginative until events unfold that will reveal what you need to know. The Moon is void of course in Virgo all day, the feel of yesterday’s Earth grand trine still lingering.
At 2:22 am, Mars enters Cancer to start another round of Cardinal activity, with the emphasis on action. The things we’ve been thinking about doing we are now eager to set in motion—perhaps overly eager. At 3:04 am, the Moon enters harmonizing Libra, opening the door to fruitful initiative with a social emphasis. It immediately connects with Mars, then gives the nod to each of the Cardinal planets by the end of the day. This gives us a glimpse of what’s coming as Mars does the same thing, with sweeteners from a Mars trine to Neptune to lift our spirits with hope and idealism, and lunar sextiles to Venus and Sun to smooth our interactions with others. Use this day well, for it carries the full potential that life has to offer.
It’s a good day to apply yourself to learning something new. Curiosity rules as Mercury sextiles Mars for the second of three times (with July 11, September 29). At 8:11 pm PT, Neptune re-enters Aquarius to take us back into the linear, dispassionate inner perspective that we’ve inhabited since 1998. Now through February 2, we can finish up old lessons and creative processes that focus through our mental powers. Good news if you don’t like void-of-course Moons: With Neptune at the last degree of Aquarius, we get very short void periods most of the time again, until it re-enters Pisces (February 2). With Venus square Jupiter today, we are focused on how we can expand our wealth and our love. The Moon continues in Libra, making no contacts today.
At 4:57 am, the Moon goes void of course for 1 minute, before it enters soaring Scorpio (4:58 am). Harmony, smooth flowing events, and agreement color the day, while the evening brings new insights into current relationship and financial challenges. Our productivity is up as the Sun sextiles Saturn. Get on those unfinished projects. The time is ripe to be active!
Today’s sole planetary interaction is the First Quarter Moon square to the Sun, at 14 Scorpio/4:08 am. This brings out the tension inherent in any unstable elements in our circumstances. This will spur us to action that will be played out in the coming three weeks and feed the process we experience during the Jupiter retrograde that starts on August 30. This carries themes of how loved we feel and how that influences our ability to take risks or be expansive.
In the chart cast for Washington DC, the involved planets appear to operate behind the scenes, but this is an illusion that will become apparent by the end of the month. The ideological divide that has frozen our government continues, the playing out of unresolved conflicts from the formative period when the country was born. In this respect, it is not only useful but essential that this be acted out.
The Sabian Symbol for 14 Scorpio is, “Through a seemingly inaccessible mountainous country the telephone linemen carry their thin lines of communication.” (ME Jones version) Even with Mercury retrograde, even with a Fixed T-square in the heavens, we still have to communicate in order to create true harmony. Even if we have a “what’s the use” feeling—that our words will be unheard and unheeded, we need to say it anyway. Something of our intention makes it through, and we get the clarification that comes of release. We just can’t expect others to think we are right (and we probably aren’t, completely).
At 8:15 am, the Moon enters its brief void period, going into sagacious Sagittarius at 8:21 am. A square to Mercury brings out the discord in the way things sit with unresolved situations, offering a clearer viewpoint that leads to resolution. With a trine to Uranus, we can make effective changes today. Venus sextiles Saturn, a breath of fresh air for the sanity it brings to chaotic circumstances. Rules and boundaries are good.
At 2:45 am, Mercury re-enters Leo from the tail end of the sign, bringing a sigh of relief from Virgos everywhere. Leos now get to take the heat (along with Taurus, Scorpio, and Aquarius). We feel it immediately as Mercury makes its second opposition to Neptune, an energy we first felt July 28-August 3. We may discover what in our own vision doesn’t fit with what others are perceiving—the first step in resolving our differences. The situation carries some volatility as we feel the jangled energy of tomorrow’s Mars square to Uranus.
We’ve been feeling it building up since August 3, and today we get the climax of intensity as Mars squares Uranus. There can be abrupt changes in direction and focus, understanding and behavior today. The Moon finishes its sojourn through Sagittarius on a high note with helpful harmonies to Mercury and Neptune. Its void period starts at 1:25 pm, but can still be used profitably until the Moon enters Capricorn at 1:38 pm PT. Energies well up from the depths of consciousness as she makes her way past the other planets in Cardinal signs—Uranus, Mars, and Pluto by the end of the day. This is a powerhouse day when we should not expect things to go as planned; expect to work on things that are not on your to-do list. In particular, use the evening for introspection and meditation—it will pay off over time.
In a seamless flow of intensity, Mars carries Uranus’s drive to individualism to Pluto, creating a keen awareness of the dilemma we face in balancing freedom and commitment. Although there is no final resolution now, there is a light: Jupiter helps us see the way out of the dilemmas we now face, but we need to tap our optimism and believe in ourselves in order to fully activate its energy. It’s easier today as Moon trines this powerhouse of hope. Don’t let a square from Saturn dissuade you from taking the risk; just make sure your plans are as free as possible of gaps and pitfalls. The Moon enters its void-of-course period at 1:34 pm, which lasts until 8:47 pm tomorrow. Enjoy some rest, relaxation, and time to complete previous projects.
We get a day to assimilate the energy pathways created so far this week. The Moon is void in Capricorn until it enters independent Aquarius at 8:47 pm.
The Aquarius Moon heads toward tomorrow’s Full Moon, loading up with insights to be used in the release. We get to see the plus side of all this activity when we are reminded of processes that are currently blocked. Obstacles serve a purpose now, preventing us from making decisions based on incomplete understanding, as well as giving us a point of stillness from which to operate.
The Full Moon at 11:57 am/20°41′ Aquarius comes on a wave of love and grace, as Venus also participates in the culmination. Our heart opens to the insight that has eluded us until now. The coming week brings a crescendo in our understanding of what we value and who we love as Venus finally makes contact with the Sun. By the end of the day, we see areas where we’ve acted against our best interests; time to forgive ourselves, apologize, and change our m.o. There is still a mystery to be revealed, so don’t rush to judgment.
In the chart cast for the United States, support for America’s workers begins to brings signs of life back into the economy. Greater productivity lies ahead. There is a growing acknowledgment that the nation must become more financially self-sufficient, relying less on foreign monies. The country gets a break from extreme weather patterns, and President Obama looks weaker than he really is.
The Sabian Symbol for the Full Moon’s 21 Aquarius depicts, “A woman disappointed and disillusioned, courageously facing a seemingly empty life.” Resist the temptation to indulge in self-pity and other undermining emotional patterns. Use them instead to break through the illusion that life is empty. Where we feel disappointed and disillusioned, recognize that we have held expectations, have become attached to a particular outcome. Instead, face down these emotions and accept the challenge with optimism to bring real meaning into our life. We live in a world of possibility.
At 5:26 am, the Moon gives us a brief respite when it goes void, picking up steam again once it enters Pisces at 5:54 am. This is a good time to look back over our experiences so far this year: What have you encountered and what have you accomplished because of it? We get another take on our experiences of last week. If we have not put together the real picture yet, we have a chance to do so today.
The Moon in Pisces makes its final contact, a sextile to Jupiter before going void of course at 1:21 am, until 5:01 pm tomorrow. Don’t despair! Moon in Pisces still operates effectively when put into action, and actions taken turn out particularly well. It is also an excellent time to participate in inner communication.
Although the Moon is void of course in Pisces, we can still use its energy. This offers stellar support for today’s triple conjunction of Sun-Venus-Mercury. Allow yourself to be drawn inward, then start digging. We’ll recover nuggets of understanding that we will use to fulfill our dreams over the coming 9 months. At 5:01 pm, Moon enters avid Aries to reactivate the Cardinal Cross planets tonight and tomorrow.
We get a quick review of our emotional experiences since August 3 as Moon reconnects Uranus, Pluto, and Mars before heading off to find Saturn. Give yourself time to integrate what has happened before dashing off into new adventures.
We feel more relaxed today as Mars sextiles Jupiter; it really is going to be all right. We can use this energy for the rest of the week, since the Moon glues these planets together again on Saturday. The Aries Moon brightens us with trines to Tuesday’s triple conjunction planets Mercury, Sun, Venus. Anything is possible!
The harmony continues today as Moon finds resonance with Neptune and Pluto. In between, it is void of course from 4:50 am to 5:36 am, when it enters Taurus, sign of manifestation. Use these energies to bring creativity and meaning together.
Action meets optimism again with an added bonus of motivation as Moon reconnects Jupiter and Mars. With a follow-up square to Mercury, we know we don’t have all the answers yet, but we’re getting there.
Back in late March (the 26th, to be exact), we wished upon a star that our fondest dreams might come true. We made a pledge to be true to ourselves. Today we reach the culmination of that cycle (the halfway point). This is not a time to celebrate, but a time to check into the process and release our desire to “work” the situation. It’s time to surrender to trust, to let the universe bring it back to us. This is Venus’s opposition to Neptune; the path of love flows through spiritual friendship. This is underscored by the Last Quarter Moon, which highlights tomorrow’s Sun-Neptune opposition, a high point which echoes our longing for love and deep fulfillment.
Venus enters Virgo at 3:11 pm, the sign of its fall. Time to let go of self-criticism. The Moon takes us further inside when it enters its void period at 5:00 pm, which ends at 5:53 pm when it goes into loquacious Gemini.
The chart of the Last Quarter Moon cast for Washington DC, the emphasis is on money and the economy. Necessity is the mother of invention, and events on the home front reveal how out of touch the legislature is with the reality that Americans face daily. Solutions are available, but some power brokers are not yet finished their shouting match.
At 29 Taurus, the Sabian Symbol states, “Two garrulous old cobblers are working side by side on their ancient bench.” (ME Jones version) Tedious tasks become enjoyable when they are coupled with camaraderie. Not only do they seem effortless, but they forge bonds of friendship that stand up to the test in times of need. This week, everything goes better when we do it together.
The Moon in Gemini carries intuitive insight to the tasks at hand to make our efforts more efficient and enjoyable. The Sun opposes Neptune today, the full phase of the yearly Sun-Neptune cycle that started on February 17. We’ll feel the longing stimulated by yesterday’s lunation dissipate after today, but we should use it to inform our direction, rather than ignore it.
At 4:21 am, the Sun enters Virgo, sign of the harvester. The days are noticeably shorter in the Northern Hemisphere, the nights cooler as the crops ripen. So too do the crops of our year’s efforts begin to bear fruit. The Moon in Gemini finds harmony with the nearly stationary Mercury, to bring head and heart into alignment. Now we have the clarity we need to act, but we may need to wait.
At 2:34 am, the Moon goes into a new void-of-course period. This ends at 3:31 am, when she enters her home sign, sweet sensitive Cancer. Use the calm and supportive hours before late morning to find your center, before the challenges of the day begin: The Moon once more finds the bumps in the road as it makes contact with the planets of change, Uranus and Pluto. A sextile to Jupiter ends the day on a positive note and blesses our dreams with insight and optimism.
You may notice a few obstacles today (and yesterday as well), as Moon, Mars, and Saturn connect. It’s not that they suddenly appeared out of nowhere, only that they were hidden or delayed until now. This is good. They can goad us into taking an action that is long overdue and which will bring a pervasive harmony into our lives once the dust settles. The Moon is void of course from 6:04 am until tomorrow morning, but we can still use Moon is Cancer as if it were not void.
At 9:09 am, the Moon moves into Leo, opening the door to intuitive insight as it makes an afternoon trine to Uranus. The energy is internalized as we head toward the New Moon. Mercury makes its direct station (standstill) after a 24-day retrograde at 3:03 pm/18̊42′ Leo. This brings a feeling of release and relief. We are cleared for take-off into the blue skies of clarity.
With the Moon in Leo connecting to Jupiter, Saturn, and Mercury, we feel challenged instead of overwhelmed by the tasks that lie before us now. Yes, it will take longer than we want it to, but we will get there if we can be patient.
We know that something is afoot and change is about to occur, a fact brought to light by the Sun trine Pluto. This opens the door to Pluto’s station direct (September 16). Finally we start to see the results of all the work we’ve done this year to clear our path to the future. The Moon is void of course at 10:12 am, until its entry into Virgo at 11:13 am PT. This takes us to the New Moon, which occurs at 8:04 pm/5°27′ Virgo on the heels of the Sun-Moon-Venus trine to Jupiter and Pluto. What a wonderful lunar month this will be, with an Earth Grand Trine involving Venus and Jupiter! It promises to be a time of manifestation of miracles, but it will work better if we are willing to give our focus and energy to the process.
In the chart cast for the US set in the nation’s capitol, wealth seems just around the corner. It looks like a bumper crop for the nation, and there is a renewed interest and appreciation in our agrarian roots. Renewable resources are key to the nation’s future. Acerbic words still flow from the ever-garrulous and dissembling mainstream media, their emotion unconfined in the face of the fact that their fear-mongering predictions are proven wrong.
At the New Moon’s degree of 6 Virgo, the Sabian Symbol states, “Children’s voices and the smiles of elders; it is a merry-go-round with blatant music and unrestrained joyousness.” As we enter the harvest season, there is much to be thankful for, and joyful expression is the result. In times of need, the simple pleasures of love and companionship stand out above all.
The Moon continues the harmonies of yesterday, underscoring today’s Venus trine to Jupiter. We feel ready for love—but wait . . . we have some Jupiter work to do. With Jupiter’s station retrograde tomorrow, we need to lay a foundation first. We have until the end of the year to do it. Today we are inspired; we know what needs doing. Time for lift-off! The Moon is void of course at 3:15 pm until tomorrow midday. Enjoy some time to get organized and integrate loose ends of awareness into your consciousness.
At 2:18 am, Jupiter enters its retrograde period, when it appears to move backward through the early degrees of Taurus. This lasts until December 25, giving us four months to build a new foundation for the future. At 11:25 am, the Moon enters artistic Libra, bringing into our awareness the challenges we still face as we build a new world. Moon opposes Uranus and squares Pluto to take us deep into what’s real.
As the Moon continues through Libra, it connects with Saturn and Mars to remind us of our unfinished plans and uncleared obstacles. Head and heart find alignment as the day wanes, and we see the road mapped out before us.
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