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This Week's Specials

Planet Weather for the Week of July 22, 2007

Planet Weather for the Week of July 22, 2007


SkyWatchMoon phase of the week: 10/22 -- The Moon enters her First Quarter phase at 2:29 AM EDT, at 29 degrees Libra. Sky watching events of the week: There is no single spectacular close passage this week, but all week Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn all continue to be visible in the night sky. Venus is approaching her retrograde station (on 7/27), the point at which she appears to halt in the sky with respect to the Zodiac and fixed stars, and then (again apparently, as viewed from Earth) reverse course back towards the Sun, setting earlier and earlier until she is hardly visible by the end of the July. Related skywatching factoid: The ancients had two names for Venus -- Hesperus and Vesperus -- the first for those times when she rises ahead of the sun, appearing as the "bright morning star" and the second for when she sets behind the sun as an "evening star." Venus will remain Vesperus for a while, disappear from the sky for a few weeks, and then become Hesperus by late August. Mars is now rising a bit after midnight locally. Jupiter is rising before sunset, culminating (reaching his highest point overhead) around 9 PM local time and setting a couple of hours after midnight, while Saturn is still close to Venus, setting about half an hour later. Space news of the week: New moon discovered orbiting Saturn! The Cassini spacecraft just recently discovered this body, bringing to four the number of new Saturnian moons Cassini has spotted. Hence astronomers romantically dubbed this one "S4" for now (although it will probably receive an appropriately mythic handle sometime soon). Saturn has a ton of 'em -- 46 satellites large and (mostly, like S4) small, at last count before this latest discovery. Hopefully, S4 will be ready for its closeup when Cassini swoops near in 2009.                   Go out! Look up!


Knowing when VOC Moons occur is a key to planning your astrological week!


The Void-of-course (VOC) Moon is a kind of limbo. As it reaches the end of a sign, the Moon makes no major aspect to another planet before it enters the next sign. VOC is best for less outcome-oriented activity, since VOC often means detours, distractions, or delays. If you want specific outcomes or if timeliness is critical, choose another time if possible. VOC is best for processing, imagining, creating, and open-ended activities, like parties, research, or cleaning your desk/closet for instance! It is said that when a new action is initiated during VOC, “nothing will come of it,” or energies go in unplanned directions, which may not necessarily be negative.


This week - Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday are the most active energetically and potentially most productive days (depending on what you’re doing!) On 7/22/07, the Moon is VOC/Libra from 2:29AM to 4:18AM EDT – on 7/24/07, VOC/Scorpio from 6:30AM to 4:29PM EDT – on 7/26/07, VOC/Sagittarius from 8:13PM EDT to 2:21AM, the next day. On 7/28/07, VOC/Capricorn from 10:23PM EDT to 9:14AM EDT, the next day.



The following planetary energy patterns flavor the day and are felt or experienced often hours before and after their exact culmination. They remain effective, certainly until the next major planetary pattern comes along to shift the energy.


The Sun enters fixed, fire Leo on 7/23/07 @ 1AM EDT until 8/23/07. Leo the lion signifies the middle of the season (Summer in the Northern Hemisphere and Winter in the Southern Hemisphere). Leo’s lively spirit is also its message, reminding you to play and open your heart to life all around you. Be sure to spend lots of time laughing and enjoying each unique moment as fully as you possibly can. The refrain from the popular song, “Don’t worry, be happy,” was surely composed by a Leo type. We’re in a fire sign season, so the heat is on, passions are ardent and expression and creative fervor reign. Or, sometimes lounging around like a cat in the Sun, or on the sofa, is just the right way to enjoy life and feel its consistent, insistent heartbeat. Go ye and play in the Sun, under the Sun, under the Moon and stars!


Mercury reaches its “shadow point” of 11 deg. on 7/24/07. This is the same degree at which it turned retrograde. As Mercury moves past the shadow degree, new ideas based on the material revisited over the past weeks, begin to make more sense, you’ve done the review thing, and you’re able to reach some conclusions that will move you forward. Mercury’s sojourn in cardinal, water Cancer began on 5/28/07 and ends on 8/4/07. Mercury turned Rx on 6/15/07 @ 11 deg. Cancer. Mercury turned Stationary Direct in Cancer @ 2deg. on 7/9/07. This past Mercury Rx seemed more worrisome, in the sign Cancer, and probably included a much-needed assessment of the basic needs of your life (housing, food, shelter, and money for basic necessities), family, and those closest to you. The instinctive quality of water may have already tapped into the major planetary shift beginning in January 2008, when Pluto enters Capricorn, which, as the opposite of Cancer, also symbolizes the marketplace, basic goods and services that we all need for comfort, security, and a certain quality of life. Put your house in order so that you are prepared for changes and feel an adequate measure of security.


Mars in fixed, earth Taurus square (90deg.) Neptune in fixed, air Aquarius @ 21deg. on 7/24/07 @ 7:11PM EDT. This aspect typically means you are detoured from your chosen direction – usually for the purpose of gaining inspiration or simply distracting you from the task at hand (for better or worse – although certainly you may wish to do some wool-gathering!). This can be challenging or annoying, but it may be useful to ask why you are being diverted and what there is to gain. Confusion often comes with this aspect, and it is best to ask for clarification if directives are fuzzy or incomplete. Planning a romantic interlude is another perfect use for this energy. Driving while intoxicated would be an even worse idea than usual. Neptune diffuses and often confuses (like mist), but also inspires. Choose your activities accordingly. You may get a spiritual insight extraordinaire.


Mercury/Cancer trine (120deg.) Uranus in mutable, water Pisces @ 18deg. on 7/28/07 @ 11:24PM EDT. This is just what you needed – a flash of intuition to move those soggy thoughts along. Enough of the retrograde marsh! Take to the skies and get some needed perspective. Fine-tune the plan and spread the word. Be brave and share what you’ve discovered with others. You may be too wound up to sleep – so stay up and write furiously in your journal or chat with your best friend – some mysteries may be resolved and new ones initiated. There’s excitement with this energy; take hold and soar with it.


Venus turns retrograde (Rx) on 7/27/07 @ 2 deg. Virgo and turns direct again on 9/8/07. Venus entered mutable, earth Virgo on 7/14/07.  Here we go again, another retrograde to maneuver though. With Venus, we are dealing with all things relationship – love, affection, and those values to which we subscribe, are attracted to, and those we want or aspire to attain. Venus retrograde my increase yearning for what we wish we had, regret for what we have lost, or acceptance of the contracts we’ve committed to. Regret won’t last long with this practical Venus, although it quickly dips back into Leo on 8/8/07, and then all bets are off. Venus in Leo is interested in love and more love. The challenge here is with commitment to work and equal commitment to loved ones. Good luck balancing the scales.

NewsBits: Earthquakes in Season? Two earthquakes in one week in the Pacific! Japan got hit, and then San Francisco – neither of them were devastating (this time), thank the gods and goddesses! Yet, a Japanese nuclear power plant was damaged and is still leaking radioactive material.  Are we in for greater earth changes? Is this a prelude to the nearly 16 year cycle of Pluto in Capricorn? Both earthquakes took place as Venus entered the earth sign Virgo (where it will retrograde on 7/27/07).  When Pluto enters Capricorn on 1/26/08, it will only reach 1 degree before it retrogrades back into Sagittarius for the second half of 2008. Venus was at 1 degree these past days when the earthquakes took place. Pluto’s station will stimulate by trine the Venus retrograde station @ 2 Virgo. Will this signal a more severe shaking of the earth? We cannot say for sure. Just recently awareness is building about the use of non-disposable plastic bags, billions of them that are floating and flying around the globe strangling birds and fish and in general wreaking havoc with the environment. California has already banned these lazy, no-good excuses for carrying groceries and other goods. In Capricorn, we are reminded of our responsibilities and our willingness to commit to integrity – what will show up in spades at first is where we have failed in this effort and where we have not even thought to make an effort because, maybe it was too inconvenient. We know that Pluto in Capricorn will also unsettle our normal sense of security, our sense of place, status, and respect in some ways (the US reputation internationally, for instance). Pluto was in Capricorn last 248 years ago (between 1762-1777); during which time the United States of America was born. Rebuilding our political capital and re-establishing our tarnished international reputation will be a challenge. Which political candidate is up to THAT challenge? It’s showdown time personally and politically – get ready!


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