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This Week's Specials

Planet Weather for Weeks 10/16 and 10/23/11

Planet Weather for Weeks 10/30 and 11/6/11

7 Billion and Counting! On Halloween, no less (here in the US), somewhere on this planet of ours the seven- billionth baby will be born. This is another indication of the exponential increase in population – since the span of time it takes to reach the next billion is decreasing. I’m sure we’ve all noticed the extreme weather patterns that have taken place all over the world. For instance, I have lived in the Boston area for 25 years and I have never witnessed the kind of Fall we’ve had this year. We didn’t have a Fall – the leaves never all turned color and never peaked, and then we had a freak snowstorm, a Nor’easter storm on 10/30/11 – also something I have not seen in the 25 years I’ve lived here. Uranus in Aries is certainly bringing us “new” weather patterns and shaking up the winds of change along with Pluto in Capricorn (affecting the solidity of the Earth, or anything we thought was protected and stable), shaking us to our foundation. Welcome to the new normal! On that note – in the news this week, an earthquake in Turkey with hundreds dead, but some touching stories of amazing rescues emerged, including that of a two-week old infant. Find your place in the crowd!

NewsBits: Gadaffi’s Regime is Over! The brutal 42-year reign of Libya’s dictator Moammar Gadaffi ended in ignominy (much the same as Saddam Hussein’s, who was found in a hole in the ground) as Gaddfi was apprehended hiding in a sewage pipe filled with debris. Whether he died of wounds in the fight to capture him, or whether he was executed and shot in the stomach and head after capture, is still questionable, but not too difficult to understand. The high adrenaline tension of finally capturing the leader of a brutal regime, who’s been responsible for killing your friends and family, must have been beyond control and purely instinctual, although, of course, not condoned in civilized society.

Gaddafi was born on 6/7/42 in Sirte, Libya, time unknown, and died on 10/20/11, captured in his own home town. One of the significant aspects on the day of his death was the transiting South Node of the Moon conjunct w/in a degree of his Sun @ 16 Gemini. The nodes, although not planets, are important contact points and typically bring things to external awareness. We do not know the exact degree of Gaddafi’s Moon but with Uranus in early Aries, we feel fairly certain this transiting planet was close to his Moon/Aries when he died and would indicate emotional disruption, separation, and often violence, as was certainly the case at his demise. The transiting Moon/Libra was opposite his Moon/Aries and transiting Uranus. His progressed Mars was conjunct his natal North Node of 8 Virgo w/in a degree. The most exact aspect was transiting Jupiter/Taurus retrograde on his natal Venus 8 Taurus. One would not normally think of that aspect as difficult, but we have to consider the circumstances and one of the issues were Gaddafi’s values (represented by Venus), tightly held by Venus/Taurus. Transiting Jupiter enlarged the fact of someone who was unsympathetic to the values of his people.

Who is Herman Cain? Herman Cain is a Republican running for President. He was born on 12/13/45 in Memphis, TN, time unknown. He rose recently from the pack but not without controversy. He is outspoken and suffers a bit from foot-i- mouth disease as is not unusual for someone with 3 planets in Sagittarius (Sun, MercuryRx, and Venus), a Moon in impulsive Aries, and Mars in bold Leo, granting him a fire grand trine configuration in his chart. He often makes statements that are off the wall and then retracts them or says he was only joking! Public scrutiny for Herman Cain has just begun. Sure enough, as this went to press, news reports stated Herman Cain was involved in two sexual harassment allegations in the 1990’s. Other public figures with Mars in Leo include Donald Trump, John McCain and Al Gore.


Moon phase for the week of 10/30: 11/2 -- The Moon enters Her First Quarter phase at 12:38 PM ET at 9 degrees of Aquarius. Skywatching events of the week: There are no close lunar or planetary passes. However, a meteor shower does put on a show. 11/5 -- The annual Taurid meteor shower peaks. This meteor shower, aka "Halloween Fireballs," takes its formal name from the fact that its fiery streaks appear to originate in the Constellation Taurus. Skywatching in the early morning hours after moonset should net you 10 to 15 blazing space rocks per hour. All the planets visible to the unaided eye also put in an appearance this week. Mercury and Venus will set very close together low in the West just after sunset (Venus is much the brighter of the two). Saturn is now a morning star rising just ahead of the Sun. Mars rises much earlier in the wee hours, with bright Jupiter presiding over the night and early morning sky after midnight.

Moon phase for the week of 11/6: 11/10 -- The Moon reaches perfect Fullness at 3:16 PM ET, at 18 degrees of Taurus, the sign where She is exalted. This Full Moon is universally dubbed the Cold Moon (enough said!) Skywatching events for the week of: 11/9 The nearly Full Moon makes a close pass by Jupiter. Their moment of closest approach happens in late morning when both are below the horizon but look for them close together in the East just after sunset. Mars and Saturn continue to be morning stars and Mercury, Venus, and Jupiter evening stars. Reminder! Daylight Savings Time also ends on 11/6 -- "Spring forward, fall back" time again, late this year.

Space News and Weather: Planet-wise, our Solar System now consists of 8 planets and two so-called "dwarf planets," Pluto and Eris. Of particular interest is the fact that Pluto and Eris are almost exactly the same size -- 1400 miles in diameter, give or take. Astronomers just recently determined the size of Eris with great accuracy when it passed in front of a distant star. When Eris was first discovered in 2005, it was thought to be significantly larger than Pluto, a fact that helped "demote" Pluto to the status of dwarf planet. Eris orbits the Sun in a highly elliptical (oblong) orbit that averages roughly three times as distant as Pluto at about two billion miles. Pluto does at least beat out Eris in one category -- so far -- with four satellites to Eris's one, the sinister sounding Dysnomia in keeping with the mythology of Eris as the Greek goddess of strife and discord.... 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 10/30/11 – Sunday, Wednesday (Venus and Mercury enter Sagittarius), and Thursday are the most active days energetically – more Moon or planetary aspects for engagement with others, projects, and stimulation for producing results, or demands/challenges on your energy. On 10/30/11, the Moon is VOC/Sagittarius from 9:31AM to 12:39PM EDT – On 11/1/11, the Moon is VOC/Capricorn from 5PM to 6:08PM EDT– On 11/3/11, the Moon is VOC/Aquarius from 11:41PM to 3:18AM EDT (next day) – On 11/5/11, the Moon is VOC/Pisces from 4:05AM to 2:02PM ET (next day) Daylight Savings Time ends at 2AM on 11/6/11.

Week of 11/6/11 – Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday (Full Moon) are the most active days energetically – more Moon or planetary aspects for engagement with other or projects, and stimulation for producing results, or demands/challenges on your energy. On 11/9/11, the Moon is VOC/Aries from 12:46AM ET until 2:45AM ET – On 11/11/11, the Moon is VOC/Taurus from 11:27AM to 3:10PM ET.

Quote of Note: “You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star.” -- Nietzsche

Summary: As we move into November, although we’re traversing our own underworld, planets are shifting to Sagittarius, shining flickers of light, and offering philosophical takes on the swarm of demons you’ve been getting acquainted or re-acquainted with. Once Mars heads into Virgo (11/10/11), you’ll want (and need) to fix things left and right. The necessary and suddenly voluminous details may annoy you, so be sure to say no to perfection, do what you must, and then put your feet up and watch a good movie. Lots of changes, possible twists and turns of fate, and dreams and yearning come and go, in the next two weeks, so keep your sense of humor and your common sense!

Planet Patterns and Cosmic Headlines (Detail):

Venus enters mutable, fire Sagittarius on 11/2/11 until 11/26/11. This is a generous combination of Venus and Jupiter, so it will have the attributes of expansiveness, enthusiasm, promising more than it can deliver, warmth, humor, and irony. It will shower you with philosophical reasons why you ought not be angry with these two planets for failing to come through on one thing or another. There’s a bit of opportunism in this combination and often the search for the easy way out. Spirit is high and optimism endless, which can buoy the more dour into joining the party and possibly even having a dance. This enthusiasm is contagious.

Mercury enters Sagittarius on 11/2/11 until 1/8/11. It’s a twofer! Mercury gets right on that bandwagon with Venus and says, “let the party begin.” If you’ve had enough pressure recently, these two planets in Sadge will provide opportunities for laughter and taking the philosophical light side, giving you a bit of a break from daily angst. This combo is quite verbal and loves to spin yarns, so take that in stride and enjoy the journey, with a grain of salt, of course, and lots of hearty laughter.

Neptune turns Stationary Direct on 11/9/11 until 6/5/12! This is important because with this surge forward again, Neptune leaves the sign Aquarius not to return for another 164 years! Neptune is now moving steadily toward Pisces, where it Stationed @ 0deg. earlier this year between 4/4-8/5/11. On 2/3/12, Neptune returns to 0 deg. Pisces and will complete its journey through Pisces for the next 14 years. We can only imagine what changes in the culture and our sensibilities this will bring. There is a grand focus on the environment and greater sensitivity within the web-like network that binds us closer together than ever before. New visionaries will emerge, as well as new ways to believe. The way in which each one of us is connected to and responsible for every other living being on this planets will become increasingly and utterly apparent. More thoughts on mighty Neptune and the spiritual changes within and without in future issues of PW.

*Mars Retrograde Alert! Mars enters mutable, earth Virgo on 11/10/11 until 4/15/12. Yes, you read that right – this is a long time we will be spending working and reworking loose ends and generally cleaning up mess after mess without end, not to mention editing and repairing. Perfection is a huge job and never ends. Mars turns Retrograde in Virgo on 1/12/12. A mars retrograde can generate anger, as the planet of action and assertiveness is harnessed and pulled back to re-do what it thought it had already completed. Mars chafes under this kind of restriction. The thing is, you have to face the music – or at least reality and go with what’s there and what you can’t budge. You may however, maneuver around it if you’ve let go of ego enough and are savvy enough to be flexible. Who knows what you will find as you take some cosmically dictated detours. Bring a snack!

*Mercury Retrograde (Rx) Alert! Mercury’s last Retrograde of 2011 begins on 11/24/11 @ 20deg. of mutable, fire Sagittarius, and ends on 12/13/11. Pre-retrograde shadow begins on 11/6/11 when Mercury reaches 4 Sagittarius, the degree at which it will turn Direct again on 12/13/11. More on Mercury’s Rx cycle in next issue of PW.

Currently Active Paradigm-Shift Patterns -- Back Stories: Repeats and elaboration of the major configurations affecting all of us currently.

Pluto turned Stationary Direct @ 4 Capricorn on 9/16/11 until 4/11/12. Anytime an outer planet slows down, stops, and reverses direction, its characteristic energy is amplified. Pluto is our slowest moving planet [Yes] and for several years now it has been processing the growing discontent with systems that have failed us and failed to provide the kind of security society expected. We’ve experienced various breakdowns collectively and personally yielding quite a bit of instability and insecurity. This station could very well deal with financial issues and the pragmatic concerns of unemployment, but more directly where the money is, who is holding it, and why lending isn’t forthcoming. It is quite possible that a bottleneck will open and more money will flow to fuel jobs and fund business. At least these seem to be the issues surrounding this Pluto Station. (The gold bubble and Germany’s bailout in the Euro crisis with defaulting Greece.)

Jupiter entered fixed, earth Taurus on 6/4/11 until 6/12/12. Jupiter stays in Taurus without moving back into the previous sign, even when it turns retrograde on 8/30/11(it remains in Taurus), which only happens about every three Jupiter cycles (3 years). Jupiter turns Direct @ 0deg. on 12/25/11! Most of the time when Jupiter turns retrograde in any sign, it moves back into the sign before and then its retrograde cycle moves between the two signs. We might speculate that this can grant us greater relaxation and stability from the fast and furious and sudden changes that we’ve all witnessed since the beginning of this year, at least, while Jupiter was in fiery Aries. Stable and practical with a certain amount of sweetness, abundance, or favor is the message of this giving Jupiter in a Venus-ruled sign. There are possibilities, if we look for them.

Neptune in mutable, water Pisces turned Retrograde @ 0degrees on 6/3/11. Almost two months after Neptune first entered Pisces, it made its station retrograde and left Pisces on 8/4/11 to complete its cycle in the previous sign, Aquarius. Neptune returns to Pisces on 2/4/12 for the extent of its stay – until 3/31/25. So, we’ve had a taste of Neptune’s dissolving energies and the power of the water! Anyone with planets near 0deg. of any sign has been especially imprinted with Neptunian themes such as paranormal experiences, illumination about some life themes or experiences, and secrets leaking out, or even some funky illness. Neptune energies can also manifest as melancholy as we review dreams that may not have materialized, make necessary adjustments, all the while maintaining our faith in life, spirit and the meaning of it all.

Neptune entered mutable, water Pisces for the first time in 164 years on 4/4/11. Neptune turned Retrograde on @ 0deg. on 6/3/11 – Neptune returned to Aquarius on 8/4/11. Neptune re-enters Pisces for the duration of its 14 year cycle on 2/4/12. This planet’s sign change is the biggest news in April and has consequences for the next 14 years. Now we have the third outer planet making a sign change since January 2008, setting in motion a series of conditions and events that have global long-term effects. There is much to say about this momentous passage and we only get a taste this year, since Neptune will retrograde back to Aquarius from 8/4/11, through 2/4/12. Neptune is entering the modern rulership of its own sign Pisces and expresses itself quite naturally here according to its intrinsic nature. We can expect the need for greater sensitivity and environmental protections, as the harm we have done to the planet becomes more obvious. [And Gaia thinks seriously about giving us an eviction notice.] We may witness the formation of new religious groups and a reformation of existing religion as we know it. Secrets may be exposed and more leaks of information that some people may not wish to be revealed. On the positive side, new artistic accomplishments will flower in all fields, especially music, but all across the artistic spectrum. In essence it is a cultural call for greater refinement and attunement to what we often take for granted or fail to notice.

Neptune was discovered in 1846, and entered Pisces on 4/26/1847 through 1861. Oddly enough, Uranus was also in Aries (although farther along in the sign) when Neptune entered Pisces for the first time (since its discovery). This is only the second time, after Neptune came into our consciousness awareness, that Neptune is transiting Pisces! Both Neptune and Pisces are tricky. They operate on a completely different level. Pisces is known for its hyper-sensitivity, compassion, diffusiveness, spirituality, dream-like imagination, second-sight, idealism, patronage of the arts, and the ability to dissolve barriers of all kinds for greater unity. Negative manifestation includes: dissipation, neglect, addictions, deception, drugs, theft, scandals, and secrets. Neptune leaves Pisces on 3/31, 2025. A few highlights of Neptune’s last transit through Pisces include: new social movements, such as Marxism, emancipation of slaves, the start of the US Civil War, the California Gold Rush, the Romantic movement in music, and transcendentalism. You can be sure we’ll be discussing Neptune’s amazing journey through Pisces in future issues of PW.

We’ve only had four months of Neptune in Pisces, which we have not experienced for 166 years! As we begin to integrate with this complex novel energy infusion, you may notice a greater sensitivity or subtlety. Neptune dissolves barriers and that is one of the reasons a positive Neptunian response often allows greater compassion for human error and human frailty. Neptune deals with the unseen and the unnoticed and often accounts for spiritual breakthroughs and even paranormal experiences. I believe that this transit of Neptune through Pisces will loosen the boundaries between the material realm and the spiritual or energetic realms. Many of us will experience more than can be easily explained through the measurable functions of science. This can be a time of high magic but also the stripping away of illusions and deceptions and unless one has a strong inner core, the disillusionment we find may destabilize us. Practice faith in the joy of being alive and the true mysticism of that fact alone, no matter what your religious beliefs may be. Neptune is magical and a component of magic is addiction, as we seek to recreate the transcendence of blissful states that allow us to escape the harsher realities of everyday life.

Uranus re-entered Aries on 3/11/11, and remains there until May 2018. This is the biggest news of March and beyond, and heralds a new upward spiral in social and cultural evolution. Last summer, Uranus teased us by parking itself and remaining only at 0deg. Aries (the powerful degree of the Spring Equinox) from 5/27-8/13/10. Now it really means business – it has engaged into its full cycle. Any planet in the first sign of the Zodiac wants to start a fire, begin something new, innovate, and create or reinvent something in its own image. This combination can certainly be aggressive, bold, courageous, willful, and because of the influence of Uranus, unexpected and explosive. Most of the previous text was written well before the popular uprisings (conflagrations) in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and other parts of the Middle East. We are seeing the effects of individuals asserting themselves in their striving for personal freedoms that they believe are their birthright. Repressive regimes will no longer be tolerated. Aries represents the new and renewal – as it emerges from the dreams of the previous sign, Pisces. It burns with the fire of justice and courage to be free at any cost.

Saturn entered cardinal, air Libra on 10/29/09. The full cycle lasts until 10/6/12. Saturn retrograded back into the last three degrees of the previous sign, Virgo, from 4/8/10-7/22/10. What can we expect? Let’s speak to the greater implications of this 2.5-year Saturn-sign cycle. Saturn is exalted in Libra. This so-called “essential dignity” means there’s more of a commitment to promote cooperation and harmony among equals. Or, we can say, that is the primary striving in this combination. The collective will be more focused on what is fair and equitable and what is not. Generally, the message is to find the imbalances and rebalance as needed. Where are you giving your commitment and attention? Are the returns you receive what you really want? If not, then adjust those commitments and relationships for greater equality and fairness. Saturn in Libra also asks – what matters and what is valuable? When there is real value, it is easier to make a commitment for a longer time and with greater attention and intention. All major relationships and, in particular, those with Libra/Aries Sun, Moon, or Ascendant, will be put to a greater test. Saturn in a cardinal sign is more proactive than in other signs, and you may find that you seek order from recent chaos and productivity from prior stress and mess.

Saturn in Libra addresses the questions of balance, fairness, relationships, negotiations, and compromise. With Saturn there is always some kind of evaluation, some testing of standards met or not, and have we achieved what we set out to do in the various areas of our life? If we feel we are out of balance, then we will want to rebalance, or renegotiate the contracts we’ve made. Saturn will be backtracking now, to refine those imbalances and to test the rebalancing that you’ve begun. What is it exactly that makes for harmony and contentment in your life? All Libras, Aries, Cancers and Capricorns are feeling this testing the most.

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General editing and science editor, John Flagg.
Opinions and interpretation/analysis expressed are the sole intellectual property of Dorothy Oja. PW emerged from transcripts of a weekly radio show in 1996.

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MINDWORKS services include: Timing and Electional work (dates for surgery, weddings, business openings etc.), Composite/Davison Relationship and Couples analysis, Children's Profiles and private tutoring. Meta-Coaching sessions involve eliciting the astrological and sacred dynamics of your chart to empower realization of your goals and find satisfaction in self-expression. An active writer for national magazines and online sites, collections of Dorothy's articles are available upon request. Dorothy writes a weekly ezine, Planet Weather, published for the past 15 years for enthusiastic subscribers, which includes social, cultural and political commentary. She has frequently appeared as a guest on TV, hosted her own radio shows and has been interviewed in the print media. In October 2000, Dorothy published her text, Compatibility & Conflict for Romantic Relationships, as a computer interpretive report, followed by Compatibility & Conflict for Friendship and Business in October 2002. Her first book, Planetary Resonance was released in May 2012. Dorothy currently serves the community as Chair of the ISAR Ethics Committee including Ethics Awareness Training.