August: The Search for Patience

The birth of August had the Sun at 9 degrees of Leo, slightly more than 3 degrees from the North Node of the Moon, while retrograde Mars opposed the Sun, still languishing about with the South Node of the Moon, and square Uranus. The Moon in Pisces was in an out of sign conjunction with Chiron and opposed to Venus in Virgo. Many of the slower moving planets were in aspects they will stay in all month: Saturn in Capricorn was trine Uranus in Taurus and Jupiter in Scorpio was trine Neptune in Pisces. Lots of intensity, possibly confusion, but ample energies for taking “screen shots” of where you are vs. where you’d like to be, and figuring out what you need to move forward.

There is an unusually high number of retrograde planets during August, more than we hardly ever experience all at once. For part of the month, there will be six, seven if you count Eris, eight if you count Chiron. That’s like living in an unexplained traffic jam, inching forward slowly, but sometimes feeling like perhaps you’re going backwards. Frustration, yes indeed.

Mars squaring Uranus all month is definitely a challenge. Both planets want to move, take action, go forward, do things never done before. It’s a lot of energy stirring us on an inner level. However, Mars is retrograde from the start of the month and Uranus is slowing to retrograde, stationing on August 8. So, in reality, there is little substantive movement, which can create frustration, and anger. If you feel a rush of frustrated energy moving through you, take a step back and breathe. Remind yourself that this is more a time for strategizing, and rethinking, than actually accomplishing your project.

The fact that Saturn and Uranus, two planets with very different energies, are strongly connected all month, tells us much of what we need to know as to the dynamic for our experience. Uranus wants to innovate, change, push the envelope, and not pay a lot of attention to potential consequences. Saturn wants to stick to the rules, maintain the status quo, go slowly and responsibly. This means there has been a great deal of push/pull, second-guessing ourselves, and the clashing of wills.

Meanwhile Neptune, the planet of inspiration, spirituality, intuition and illusion was connected to Jupiter at the outset, and stays connected all month. Jupiter seeks the higher perspective, wants to explore new ideas intellectually and spiritually in order to get the bigger picture of what is. It’s also the planet of faith. These two planets brought together are really quite mystical, and given they are connected for this extended period, it’s a great time for exploring our dreams, both nighttime and daytime dreams, using our imagination to bolster our creative expression, and strengthen our spiritual practices. But there are other faces of those planets, as well, including addictive behavior. When Jupiter tends to over-do, over-consume, or over-opine during conflict, or even in a chat fest, it can lead to trouble. With Neptune, there can be too much magical thinking, deluding ourselves into believing what is simply not true. So make friends with reality, set good boundaries, and check your facts this month.

Venus shifted into her own sign of Libra on August 6 at 4:28 PM PDT.  She was making four very strong aspects at the time, to all the planets in very early degrees of their signs: a trine to Mars in Aquarius, an opposition to Chiron in Aries, a square to Saturn in Capricorn, and a quincunx to Uranus in Taurus.

On August 8, Uranus stationed retrograde at 2 degrees, 34 minutes Taurus at 9:50 AM PDT. It will turn direct again in early January at 28 degrees Aries. With such a long retrograde period, happening every year, the differences in energy are subtle, but real.

Eclipses! The summer of 2018 there were a series of 3 eclipses in a row, meaning there were 3 eclipses in a lunar month A lunar month refers to time period between successive new moons, or successive full moons, not that common, but not exactly rare either. According to Bruce McClure on earthsky.org/space, from 2000 to 2015, it occurs 14 times. Most years there are 4 eclipses, 2 each at two different times of the year. Because of 3 eclipses this summer, there will be a total of 5 this year.

The Leo New Moon and third eclipse of the season was August 11 at 2:58 AM PDT, conjunct retrograde Mercury and square to Jupiter in Scorpio. There was also a quincunx to both Pluto and Neptune, forming a yod. This New Moon and eclipse felt particularly important given that it is the final one of the series, and has some similarities with the previous two. All the eclipses this year occurred with the Moon’s Nodes in the Leo/Aquarius axis, with Mars retrograde on the south node. Pluto and Venus were prominent, as were Uranus and Saturn.

The first eclipse had Pluto exactly opposed the New Moon in Cancer. Venus was in a Grand Trine with Uranus and Saturn. The second eclipse had both Sun and Moon conjunct the nodes, and Pluto was exactly trine Venus. In the third eclipse, Pluto was quincunx the Sun/Moon duo, and Venus was featured in a T-square with Chiron and Saturn. With Venus and Pluto featured in all three eclipses, along with Mars retrograde on the south node, we need to be looking at what we have created with our actions and inactions (Mars retro), and to be releasing those things which block our capacity to live with a generous heart (Leo north node) toward others (Venus). The Pluto/Neptune/New Moon yod in the final eclipse says make adjustments, change what is preventing you/me/us from fulfilling our purpose, which is to make a better, more loving world (Leo north node). On a New Moon, it’s the time for a new beginning!

To assist us in the awareness of the need to make change, this New Moon and eclipse were on the anniversary of the deadly and violent clashes in Charlottesville last year. Consider the Mars retrograde on the south node in Aquarius. Is the violence in Charlottesville how we want our gatherings with others to be like? Tribal clashes against people who don’t look like/ or think like each other? With it being an eclipse of the Sun, what part of our dreams for a better future (Sun on the north node) are being eclipsed by our past history (Moon), and what can we face honestly with healing intention (Neptune/Pluto), and rebuild our structure (Saturn) in order to move forward in a more loving way with others (Venus)? It’s a big job, but enough of us together can get it done.

We are living with big challenges these days, because there is big work to be accomplished. It is obvious that there is much fear in the air around us. Faced with change, that is a common reaction. But the more we can balance others’ fear, or our own, with our inner knowing that transformation is happening and required, plus the belief in our own purpose and in the future, we need not be cowed by fear, but rather, be energetic healing warriors for the world.

Mars retrograded back into Capricorn at 7:14 PM PDT on August 12, for the final two weeks of its 2-month retrograde period. Can we make it a grounding time? Put our feet on the earth, plan some next, needed steps for action? There are helpers at this time, Saturn in Capricorn, Uranus in Taurus, Pluto in Capricorn.

Mercury stations direct at 9:25 PM PDT on August 18. It stations direct at 11 degrees 32 minutes Leo, sextile Venus, square Jupiter and trine the Moon. Our communications will get more clear, but don’t expect total change all at once with Mercury. It has to speed up and move out of its shadow on the first of September.

From the 18th through the end of the month, the Sun is in a Grand Trine with Saturn and Uranus, hopefully assisting us with conforming to the “two steps forward, one step back” energy of Saturn and Uranus we’ve been dealing with this month. The first four days, it is out of sign, but when the Sun moves into Virgo at 9:09 PM PDT on August 22, it is a strong earth Grand Trine. On the 22nd, there are four planets plus the Sun and Moon in earth signs, the Moon conjunct both Mars and Pluto in Capricorn. Jupiter and Neptune remain quietly trine in the back ground. This is so befitting of harvest, and we know the season of Autumn is not far off. We may be making slow progress, but practical progress nevertheless. We can only reap what we sow, therefore our intentions are critically important.

Also on August 22, Venus is square both Mars and Pluto, and exactly opposed Eris. This is an aspect of testiness. And despite Venus being in her own sign of Venus, and being her usual “nice” self, she will be able to stand up for herself, if relationships scuffles occur. And remember we all have Venus in us; we all have that quality of attracting situations and people, some that feel good, some “not so much.” Don’t underestimate Venus under those conditions! She’ll have a pal in Mercury in Leo, with a sextile aspect, and Mercury also trine Eris.  

We have the Full Moon in Pisces at 4:55 AM PDT on August 26, in a Kite formation with Uranus in Taurus and Saturn in Capricorn. Saturn is also square Chiron, Jupiter is trine Neptune, and Venus is opposing Eris. Given all the intensity we’ve experienced this month, this Pisces Full Moon may be a good time to make no plans other than getting out in nature and resting. It comes on a Sunday, a day off for most people. Remember that a Full Moon means that the Sun is opposite the Moon. That means that when the Full Moon is in Pisces, the Sun is in Virgo. The Sun is part of a Grand Trine in earth signs. And Pisces is a Neptune/Jupiter ruled sign that connects us to Source energy, spirit and our inner light. I can’t imagine a better way to have the Moon and Sun find a balance between them than a quiet experience in Nature. The month is not over, the stress is not over, but there will soon be two of the personal planets in direct motion. And some relief is needed.

Mars stations direct at 7:05 AM PDT on August 27 at 28 and a half degrees Capricorn, still squaring Uranus, but out-of-sign. It will take Mars some time to get back up to usual speed, and will actually remain in its shadow until October 8. Nevertheless, the change of direction will change the energy of Mars, and we may feel less frustration in regards to getting projects moving forward, just perhaps not at the speed we might wish.

On August 30, the Moon will conjunct Eris, who has been in a T-square with Pluto and Venus. Mars will be involved as well, squaring the Moon and Eris. Then on August 31, the Moon will conjunct Uranus, and be part of the earth Grand Trine with the Sun, Saturn and Uranus. Those two days could be rather volatile, particularly with regard to relationships, and questions of power and control. Be willing to stand up for yourself, but try to resist speaking or acting too impulsively. Better to breathe, and take a step back, than have regrets.

I’m going to end with a quote from a wise friend, Carolyn North, who said, “We need to love and to be loved, to not be alone when the sweeping storms of the world threaten to engulf us, because the storms are already howling and more are coming.”

See you next month!



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