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Planet Weather for Weeks 12/4 & 12/11/11
NewsBits: Newt Gingrich Top (Republican) Dog? They rise and fall and emerge from the pack in these early days of the campaign for the Presidency of the United States. The most recent top contender is Newt Gingrich. This man is struggling to reinvent himself as the savior of the United States and yet he has quite a checkered history in both politics and in his personal life.
Newt Gingrich was born a Gemini close to a Sagittarian Full Moon on 6/17/43 in Harrisburg, PA, time unknown. What can we say – this combination so far is highly verbal, boisterous, exaggerating, and seeks adventure. He is certainly feeling quite sure of himself these days, but it was not always so easy for him politically. Gingrich is on his third marriage. He married Callista Bisek, who is 23 years younger, after having an affair with her while still married to his second wife – and all this during the time he led the investigation of President Bill Clinton for perjury and obstruction of justice in the Monica Lewinsky scandal! He was also part of the longest government shutdown in history (1995-1996) when the Republican majority battled with President Clinton. Gingrich was criticized when he said the Republican hard-line was due to a snub from Clinton during a flight to Israel for Yitzhak Rabin’s funeral.
True to his verbal and philosophical bent, Gingrich has written or co-wrote 24 books (so far) and has a PhD in Modern European History from Tulane University. He co-authored and was the primary architect of the book, Contract with America and was a leader of the Republican Party (1994) in its successful bid to end 40 years of Democratic majority rule. He became Speaker of the House for 4 years but resigned from the House of Representatives due to ethics accusations, three days after being elected to his 11th term. Since his resignation and for the past 13 years he’s been a highly paid political consultant.
Gingrich has a Fire Grand trine (all three fire signs occupied and equidistant in thirds around the chart), giving him lots of energy, enthusiasm but also impulsiveness, especially since his Mars is in fiery Aries. Gingrich is a smart man and can probably convince you of almost anything he wants. His Mercury is in its own sign of Gemini conjoined with Uranus/Gemini (he has much to say – hence the 24 books – LOL!) And yet, he often talks too much and suffers from saying too much at the wrong time – classic foot-in-mouth syndrome with Moon accentuated in Sagittarius and set apart (a singleton) from the rest of his planets. This also makes him responsive to others but also overly sentimental (Jupiter/Cancer) and sensitive to slights.
Soon Neptune/Pisces will approach to square Gingrich’s Mercury and there are likely to be gaffes that will seriously hurt his campaign. The Mars retrograde cycle will also be strenuous for him and his chart placements. Mars will square his Sun/Gemini and conjoin his Neptune – he’ll put up a good fight but it will dissolve in the end. Mitt Romney also has his struggles and issues and the race between these two is close. Yet, methinks Romney will probably be the Republican nominee, but no matter what, Barack Obama will win his second term.
Cain Train Wreck! On Saturday 12/3/11, Herman Cain announced the suspension of his presidential campaign after a woman named Ginger White came forth and alleged to having a 13-year, on-and off sexual relationship with Cain. She claims their relationship was strictly sexual and that she traveled with Cain and they often met in hotel rooms. She looks very believable and straightforward in TV interviews and claims she has not received money for telling her story publicly. However, she did say that Cain gave her money when she was jobless and trying to raise two children as a single mother over the course of their 13-year relationship. According to Cain, his wife, Gloria, was unaware of the relationship and the gifts of money to Ginger White.
Cain has been dogged by allegations from four women claiming to have been sexually harassed by him while he was President of the National Restaurant Association (NRA) in the early to mid-1990’s. Since then his campaign has faltered and he’s fallen behind the pack from his previous strong lead.
Herman Cain, born on 12/13/45, in Memphis, TN, time unknown, is experiencing the sobering reality-check influence of transiting Saturn conjunct his Jupiter/Libra. Jupiter rules his Sagittarian grouping of planets including his Sun/Sadge, making this transit particularly difficult as it bursts the balloon of positive enthusiasm and takes the air out of his previously high-rising campaign. Additionally, the long transit of Mars/Virgo which began on 11/10/11, and ends on 7/3/12, will square his three Sagittarius planets and North Node in his birth-chart several times and continue to create challenges for Cain. We think it’s over for Cain. He doth protest too much!
SkyWatch for the weeks of 12/4/11 and 12/11/11
"The mortal Moon hath her eclipse endur'd." -- Shakespeare
Moon phase for the week of 12/4: 12/10 -- The Moon reaches Perfect Fullness at 9:36 AM ET, at 18 degrees of Gemini, a fullness that also coincides with another astrologically significant event, a lunar eclipse. This is also the Winter Solstice Moon (for the Northern Hemisphere) and is known in Folk and Native American traditions as the Long Night Moon. Skywatching events of the week: 12/6 -- The Moon makes a close pass by Jupiter although their point of closest approach occurs midmorning when the two are well below the horizo. You can watch them setting together with the Moon leading the way around midnight as viewed from the East Coast, earlier farther west. 12/10 -- This lunar eclipse is THE skywatching event of the week. This time around, the Moon finds Herself totally eclipsed as she enters her Full Phase. Skywatchers in the western United States and Canada can just catch totality before She sets near the time of sunrise. Those watching from Alaska and Hawaii can see the entire event start to finish, as can viewers in Australia and eastern Asia. Totality lasts roughly an hour.
Moon phase for the week of 12/11: 12/17 -- The Moon enters Her Last (aka Third) Quarter phase at 7:48 PM ET, at 25 degrees of Virgo. Skywatching events of the week: 12/14-15 -- The Geminid meteor shower is the big skywatching event of this week. Best time to watch is the early morning hours after midnight and before dawn. Unfortunately, the waning Full Moon will wash out many of the fainter streaks of light but you should still be able to catch the brighter ones. (On completely dark nights, the Geminids can produce as many as 50 visible events per hour.) The Geminids are so-called because they appear mostly to radiate from the constellation Gemini ("The Twins" -- Castor and Pollux in classical myth) although, in fact, some appear in just about any sector of the sky. The Geminids coming annually in December always make for one of the major meteor showers of the year. 12/17 -- The Moon makes a close pass by Mars a couple of hours after midnight as viewed from the East Coast when the two will be well above the eastern horizon and perfectly placed for viewing.
Space News and Weather: Last week, NASA successfully launched yet another Mars rover, this one named Curiosity, to follow in the footsteps (or tread marks) of the three previously highly successful rovers, Pathfinder, Spirit, and Opportunity. This lander, appropriately named Curiosity, will complete its descent to the Red Planet's surface next August, after a 352-million-mile space odyssey. It will then begin looking for signs that Mars might once have harbored life and may be what scientists term "habitable" by searching for various carbon compounds indicative of possible life. However, Curiosity will not actually search Mars for life itself. (Exciting as this mission is, you have to wonder if this reluctance to take the bull by the horns, so to speak, does not stem, at least in part, from the controversy surrounding the Viking lander's supposed discovery of life on Mars in the 1970's....) 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 12/4/11 – Sunday, Wednesday, Friday (approach to SAT events) and Saturday (Full Moon Lunar Eclipse & Uranus Station Direct) 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 12/6/11, the Moon is VOC/Aries from 6:13AM to 9:34AM EST – On 12/8/11, the Moon is VOC/Taurus from 6:40PM to 9:52PM EST.
Week of 12/11/11 – Sunday, Tuesday (Mercury Stationary Direct), Thursday 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 12/11/11, the Moon is VOC/Gemini from 5:25AM until 8:26AM EST – On 12/13/11, the Moon is VOC/Cancer from 11:05AM to 4:48PM EST – On 12/15/11, the Moon is VOC/Leo from 8:20PM to 10:58PM EST – On 12/17/11, the Moon is VOC/Virgo from 9:29PM to 3:06AM EST (next day!)
Quote of Note: “When I was a boy, I would have visions; now I’m too busy.” -- Dalai Lama
Summary: Are you enjoying Mercury Retrograde yet? Well don’t get too excited because it will turn Direct in motion again on 12/13/11 (that went fast!) This coming week is a Full Moon and an eclipse – lots of energy to draw from and a chance to peek into the dark unconscious. Expect the unexpected (not always negative) and breakthroughs - right around the Uranus Station Direct on 12/10/11.
Planet Patterns and Cosmic Headlines (Detail):
Uranus Stationary Direct @ 0Aries, the degree of the Spring Equinox on 12/10/11 – a powerful message. This degree is the unbridled urge to individuate and to be free to express oneself. Play the fool and make plans for something new, seek progress and reinvent yourself. Use your will and energy to stride forth in the direction of your dreams – one foot in front of the other – and despite delays keep moving toward your goal. The powerful message of Uranus is conscious will and an honest authentic expression. Accept who you are by understanding your talents and weaknesses and support the right of all humans to be free agents of their own destiny.
An outer planet making a Retrograde (or Direct) Station is always an event. In the case of Uranus, expect surprises, upsets, erratic behavior, rebellion, sudden flashes of truth and the bigger picture perspective of your life. (Break through to the other side). There’s electricity in the air and you may be tempted to take risks, so take a brief moment to contemplate the consequences.
Lunar Eclipse Full Moon @ 18 Gemini on 12/10/11. This is the companion to the Solar Eclipse we experienced on 11/25/11. We’re in the last eclipse season of 2011. 18.5 years ago (May/June 1993), there were a set of eclipses that took place very close to the same sign and degree axis, also affecting especially Geminis and Sagittarians (secondarily Virgoans and Pisceans) or those with other birth planets in those signs. Think back and you may be able to pick up a thread that is relevant to what is happening today in your life. This eclipse belongs to the Saros Series 14 North which began in the year 1074. (Eclipse cycles last for thousands of years as they start at one pole and move to the other to complete themselves.)
According to Bernadette Brady’s book, The Eagle and the Lark, this is a peculiar eclipse family and can bring confusions in personal relationships, unexpected financial matters, and other peculiar turns of events. Be aware of your stress levels and draining your energies. Delay important decisions as there is a fair amount of unclarity. Take time to think things through and process any confusions. These eclipses are triggered by the Sun/Pisces (2/21/12 & 3/8/12) in three months, but also by Mars/Virgo before the Solar eclipse on 11/15/11, then on 12/24/11, with Mars retrograde on 2/18/12, and on 4/14/12, when Mars turns direct within 1 degree of the Solar eclipse, and lastly on 6/9/12! Observe the confusions and complications unfold, particularly in the political arena. Details will be important and how you handle stressful situations. Be practical and plan, but remain flexible by entertaining other available options.
Mercury Turns Direct on 12/13/11 @ 3deg. Sagittarius. Mercury entered Sagittarius on 11/2/11 and leaves the sign on 1/8/12. The pre-retrograde shadow began on 11/5/11, when Mercury reached 3 Sagittarius, the degree at which it turns Direct. The last Mercury Retrograde of 2011 began on 11/24/11 (US Thanksgiving Day!) @ 20deg. of mutable, fire Sagittarius. This entire Rx takes place in the same sign of Sagittarius. We’ll be looking at what we have and what we yearn for. With this Rx, find the joy and pleasure without over-extending your resources and discover ways to take big satisfaction in life’s smaller pleasures, often overlooked as we focus on bigger and better. Conversations can be rich during this time, as everyone has a philosophical solution to life’s problems. Travel via your favorite reading material and learn something new about a topic that really grabs your interest. Sagittarius is about expansion, but be sure it’s the kind you want! Mercury leaves its post-retrograde shadow on 1/1/12 – at which point it passes the degree at which it originally turned retrograde. This is when the full cycle ends.
**Mars Retrograde Alert! Mars entered mutable, earth Virgo on 11/10/11, and remains in Virgo (includes its retrograde time) until 7/3/12! 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, renewing, and repairing. Perfection is a huge job and never ends, so you’ll have to give it a rest lest you stress yourself out. Mars turns Retrograde in Virgo on 1/23/12 until 4/13/12. 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!
Currently Active Paradigm-Shift Patterns -- Back Stories: Repeats and elaboration of the major configurations affecting all of us currently.
Neptune turned Stationary Direct on 11/9/11 until 6/5/12! The scandals leaked out – Herman Cain’s sexual harassment skeletons and child rape abuses at Penn State University. With this surge forward again, Neptune soon leaves the sign Aquarius not to return for another 164 years! Neptune is now moving steadily toward Pisces, where it Stationed @ 0deg. on 6/3/11 and sat at 0 degrees between 4/4-8/5/11. On 2/3/12, Neptune returns to 0 deg. Pisces and will then continue its journey through Pisces for the next 14 years, until 3/31/25. 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 and questions of what to believe. The way in which each one of us is connected to and responsible for every other living being on this planet will become increasingly and utterly apparent.
We’ve only 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.
With Neptune’s foray into Pisces, 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. 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. Ed.] 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. 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.
We’ve only had four months of Neptune in Pisces so far in 2011, 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.
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 spans 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.
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. 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.