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Planet Weather for the Week of August 17, 2008
SkyWatch: Moon phase of the week: 8/22 -- The Moon enters her Last (aka Third) Quarter at 7:48 PM EDT, at 1 degree of Gemini. She "burns the midnight oil" and beds down around noon for much of the week. Skywatching events of the week: 8/22 -- Mercury passes the much brighter Venus low in the western evening twilight. At their point of closest approach, both planets will be below the horizon, but the proximity to Venus should make it easier to see hard-to-spot Mercury about a degree to the lower left of Venus. Look very low in the West near the point where the Sun disappeared earlier, about a half hour after sunset. 8/23 -- The Last Quarter Moon approaches the Pleiades ("Seven Sisters") star cluster from the West early Saturday morning. (A star cluster is a kind of mini-galaxy orbiting our Milky Way galaxy.) Look high to the South before dawn. Space news of the week: The debate on Pluto's planetary status (or lack thereof) continues. Last year, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) voted to "demote" Pluto to "dwarf planet" and, in the process, raised a firestorm of protest. Even some scientists protest this reclassification on logical, scientific grounds, as well as its being bad publicity -- casting professional astronomers as an elitist bunch with little regard for the public perception of their sometimes arcane discipline. And so the debate continues....Go out! Look up!
Knowing when VOC Moons occur is key to planning your successful 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, drifting, or delays. If you want specific outcomes, or if timeliness is critical, don’t use a VOC Moon time. 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.
Week of 8/17/08 – Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday are the most active energetically and potentially very productive days – more Moon or planetary aspects for engagement and/or producing results.(This week is mighty active indeed!) This is a more than average, active week! On 8/17/08, the Moon is VOC/Aquarius from 1:14AM to 3:46AM EDT – On 8/19/08, the Moon is VOC/Pisces from 7:41AM to 10:10AM EDT – On 8/21/08, the Moon is VOC/Aries from 12:53PM to 2:38PM EDT – On 8/23/08, the Moon is VOC/Taurus @ 5:20AM to 5:48PM EDT.
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 gears.
Mars in mutable, earth Virgo square (90deg.) PlutoRx in mutable, fire Sagittarius @ 28deg. on 8/17/08 @ 2:12AM EDT. The Mars opposite Uranus aspect of 8/6/08, with a loose square to Pluto then, has evolved into an exact square with Pluto now. This can be an intense combination and reeks of power-plays and various pressures within and without. Its formation was visible in the Russian invasion of Georgia on the eve of the Olympics in Beijing. Pluto intensifies the Mars desire to progress or forge ahead sometimes to an obsessive degree, jealous, and willful degree. The aspect also serves to uncover what moves or motivates us in the deeper strata of our being. With a transit like this, we are often surprised at what emerges from the unconscious. There is also a quality of superhuman exertion and the ability to stir or motivate self or others on a deep level.
Mercury/Virgo trine (120deg.) JupiterRx in cardinal, earth Capricorn @ 13deg. on 8/17/08 @ 9:23PM EDT and then Mercury conjuncts (0deg.) Venus/Virgo @ 18deg. on 8/21/08 @ 11:44AM EDT, and then Mercury opposes (180deg.) Uranus @ 21deg. on 8/23/08 @ 2”13AM EDT. What we deduct from these two aspects is a week of fairly upbeat and positive thinking. Mercury’s meeting with both Jupiter and Venus brings out favor, opportunity, and generosity of spirit – so that’s the time to ask for a raise or approach others for assistance. Mercury’s opposition to Uranus thereafter is the creative impulse at work but may bring a raw, direct or disturbing conversation revealing some truth or another.
Although often shocking, a Mercury/Uranus meeting clears the air. In less evolved situations, violence may erupt. It is the urge to break out of some sort of real or perceived confinement.
Mars enters cardinal, air Libra on 8/19/08 @ 6:03M EDT until 10/4/08. Mars in one of the Venus-ruled signs can be gracious and graceful. Energies are devoted to and focused upon the needs of others and in doing what it may take to get others to like you. In essence, that’s compromise but it may go too far and then resentment and a kind of passive-aggressiveness emerges – which is typical when there are struggles between planets combined in Venus/Mars patterns. One does not want to displease and at the same time one resents having to always be pleasing.
Sun in fixed, fire Leo trine PlutoRx Sagittarius @ 28deg. on 8/21/08 @ 2:49AM EDT. This will be the last trine of Sun and Pluto in fire signs, since Pluto will soon move into earthy Capricorn. There is an understanding of how life has changed culturally, especially since 1995, and also the transformations within ourselves – in particular how we have grown in wisdom or understanding through the various experiences and teaching situations we’ve encountered. How have these events contributed to the betterment of our lives or how have we missed the messages and lost the opportunities?
The Sun enters mutable, earth Virgo on 8/22/08 @ 2:02PM EDT. Once the Sun enters Virgo, there is much more focus on what must be done to wrap up the season and prepare for the next. Virgo is the efficiency expert. The element of the harvest is included in Virgo and utilization of the elements at hand. We are in pragmatic territory now. Virgo sifts and sorts and seeks to regain order from the freedom and open-hearted joy of the previous sign, Leo.
Venus/Virgo opposite (180deg.) UranusRx Pisces @ 21deg. on 8/23/08 @ 11:49AM EDT. The week ends with a surprise of some sort, particularly in the areas of relationships, values and money matters. Your normal efficiency may gain a boost with a new kind of inventiveness and a fresh way of dealing with the mundane necessities of life. Restlessness also accompanies this combination, so step out of the routine and do something to spice up your life.
NewsBits: Michael Phelps – or what does the chart of a 7 gold medal (Beijing Olympics) swimmer look like? Michael Phelps has already made Olympic history by tying Olympian Mark Spitz for seven gold medals in one Olympic competition. Phelps may yet win an eighth and beat Spitz, creating a new Olympic record for gold medals. Speaking of medals – Phelps has won 13 gold medals thus far in his career and two bronze. He won 15 medals total in Athens 2004. He also holds seven world swimming records. Michael Phelps was born on June 30, 1985, in Baltimore, MD (time unknown). As a child, he was diagnosed with ADHD and placed in a swimming program at age seven to help with his hyperactivity, and the rest is history. Astrologically, age seven is always a turning point (and cycles of 7+ years thereafter), marked by Saturn’s first 90deg. square to its birth position and typically indicates a time important developmentally. Phelps’s nickname is “Superman.” Physically, he’s a lean torso 6’4’’ with a size 14 foot, an arm span of 6’7” disproportionate to the rest of his body, but excellent for a champion swimmer. His double-jointed ankles and shorter legs help with water resistance. We could say this Sun/Mars in watery Cancer took to the water like a duck and qualified at age 15 for the 2000 Summer Olympics. Some interesting features of his chart are as follows: Mercury/Leo exactly square Pluto/Scorpio -- likely bestowing strong lungs and an iron and focused, willful mind. Venus in its own sign of Taurus is opposite Saturn/Scorpio giving him more will and great endurance. The Moon ruling over the Cancer Sun is in fiery, athletic and positive Sagittarius conjunct Uranus and sextile Jupiter/Aquarius, certainly making his life unusual in some way. He’s earned some charisma for sure, and his Jupiter position is the same as Barak Obama’s. In fact, people have called him “the Obama of Olympic swimming.” It must be that sparkling and unusual clarity of Jupiter in Aquarius that is making Phelps one of the darlings of this Olympic event. After this was written, Phelps did win his 8th gold medal in Beijing, securely setting a new world record!