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This Week's Specials

Planet Weather for the Week of August 13, 2006

The next Planet Weather issue will be published September 3, 2006

SkyWatch  Moon Phase of the week: 8/15 -- The Moon enters her Last Quarter phase at 9:51 PM EDT, at 23 degrees of Taurus. On the U.S. East Coast, look for her to rise about two hours afterwards (later farther West) and to be visible even past sunrise. Skywatching events of the week: 8/16 -- The Moon makes what is becoming a regular monthly pass near the star cluster called the Pleiades (also known as the Seven Sisters). This happens after sunrise, but Moon and cluster are close before sunrise as well. 8/19 – Venus passes the Beehive star cluster in Cancer in the East-Northeast just before dawn. (A star cluster is a collection of thousands of stars, often spherical, that behave as a very large object and usually appear as starlike points or tight groupings of these points.) The closest approach of about one degree comes much earlier before Venus rises. Space news of the week: The International Astronomical Union (IAU)  is poised to announce a major redefinition of the term "planet," due to a rash of new discoveries of bodies both orbiting our own star, the Sun, other stars, and even each other while floating freely through space. Speculation is that, because other bodies larger than Pluto have been discovered much farther out from the Sun, including objects with satellites in what is called the Kuiper Belt, speculation has it that Pluto may be demoted from planet status. On the other hand, Pluto could be "grandfathered in" and granted planet status even though similar objects in the future will not be. Stay tuned for more confusion! Go out! Look up!

This week Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday, are the most active and possibly the most productive energy days available. On Friday there is a lengthy Void-of-Course (VOC) Moon during the day from 8:30AM to 5:03PM EDT.

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 day. VOC is best for processing and open-ended activities.

Mars in mutable, earth Virgo opposes (180deg.) Uranus in mutable, watery Pisces @ 14deg. on Sunday, August 13, 2006 @ 8:51AM EDT. This is a rebellious aspect and can tend toward violence in the hands of a negative consciousness. Shocks and surprises are common under this condition, as we are awakened out of our familiar grooves and habitual patterns. Used positively, it can mean an “aha!” moment for the one who is seeking a fresh, creative solution to a conundrum that has been elusive. The main thrust is to go beyond the conventional, outside the box, for a wider view of the situation. The aspect can be prone to tension and anxiety in these signs because of the sensitivities that are activated. The aspect refers to how we assimilate the experiences existent in our environments. Some things are harder to digest than others! While writing this description, news arrived that the volcano, Mount Kilauea, one of the most active, erupted in Hawaii! In Addition, the recent terrorist plan to explode airliners that was foiled by British intelligence was certainly part of this approaching aspect combination.

Sun in fixed, fire Leo trines (120deg.) Pluto in mutable, fire Sagittarius @ 24deg. on Thursday August 17, 2006 @ 1AM EDT. The Sun’s annual trine to Pluto sheds light and brings awareness of the changes that have taken place over the last nine months and assesses the quality and feel of those changes. Are they politically viable? How has the energy been integrated? What is the political climate? The aspect speaks to an analysis of the health of the organism, the world, the culture or, one’s psyche! This is also a power aspect and speaks to the fact that if motivation and intention are strong, the desired result can be achieved. This aspect may play a role in the efforts of the United Nations to forge a cease-fire in the Middle East.

Mercury in fixed, fiery Leo squares (90deg.) Jupiter in fixed, water Scorpio @ 11deg. on Friday, August 18, 2006 @ 5:30AM EDT. Expect some hot rhetoric and strong opinions voiced with this dynamic aspect. There is a tendency to go too far, to be excessive, to take a greater risk in communicating, to be bold and tell it like it is (or as you perceive it to be!)

The Sun enters mutable, earth Virgo on Wednesday, August 23, 2006 @ 2:23AM EDT until 9/23/06. Inevitably at this time of year, we move into one of the changing seasons and signs – the betwixt and between time – as we ready ourselves for fall and winter in the Northern Hemisphere. Virgo time is busy organizing many details and essentially preparing for the weather, temperature, and schedule shifts that take place at this upcoming last quarter of the year. There’s lots of movement and sometimes the energy expresses itself as stressful and anxious.

Mercury enters mutable, earth Virgo on Sunday, August, 27, 2006 @ 3:31PM EDT. Mercury joins the Sun in Virgo and adds to the need and desire to organize oneself, life and prioritize projects and other aspects of our environment. This Mercury position is discriminating, specific, and alert, missing little. Use these energies to edit your life and find just the right fit. Try not to stress about the little things (too much)!

Mars/Virgo squares Pluto in mutable, fiery Sagittarius @ 24deg. on Tuesday, August 29, 2006. As Mars reaches the end of its journey through Virgo, it meets Pluto and the impetus is toward transformation, change, or release to make way for new methods, thoughts, and interests. We experience the impact and influence of critical factors in our lives and assess the resultant necessity to adapt. Often with this aspect, there is resistance to the pressure applied. The question is whether to resist and take a stand or yield to what seems inevitable. Often there is a need to address power issues with others.

Saturn in fixed, fiery Leo opposes Neptune in fixed, air Aquarius @ 18deg. on Thursday, August 31, 2006 @ 5:55AM EDT. The first of three exact contacts, this aspect helps to shatter illusions and to balance idealism with a workable reality. It can be harsh but sobering as we come to terms with dreams that are either viable or not. Something that was previously hidden emerges into view. Some dreams do come true and magic happens – it depends on the foundation and intention, both internal and external.

News Bits: Mercury and the Cease-Fire Draft! The same day, 8/11/06, that Mercury returned to its shadow degree, 1 Leo (degree at which it turned retrograde (Rx), the United Nations announced that it had a draft resolution that both sides had agreed to sign. It isn’t a perfect agreement, typical of most compromise, but it would end the killing and devastation for the time being. The current war between Israel and Lebanon began during a Mercury Rx, and as Mercury’s cycle progressed and moved past the shadow, the international community’s combined efforts brought about the cease-fire draft. The deep enmities are unfortunately far from over, and given that the war began during Mercury Rx, it fairly guarantees that there is unfinished business, directly the result of the current conflagration.

Ned Lamont defeats Joe Lieberman in CT Primary! Disenchantment with the war in Iraq and Lieberman’s support of the war is the consensus as to why Ned Lamont was able to unseat three-term senator Joe Lieberman, who not only voted for the original resolution authorizing the president’s to use force in Iraq but also continued to support the Bush war agenda after many other Democrats began to opt out. Lamont is a 1954 Capricorn born in Washington, DC. His birth date is unavailable presently. We can say for certain that Ned has Mars in potent Scorpio, meaning that when he goes after something, it is typically with purpose and he aims to win. His Jupiter in Gemini gives him a flexible and far ranging mind and his Capricorn Sun focuses on reaching the goal. Stay tuned for further information on Lamont’s chart, as we get it. Ned Lamont is descended from a well-to-do family of staunch Republicans, but Ned has always cast his fate with Democrats.

Universal Health Insurance!  In the US, Massachusetts leads the way with a universal health insurance plan, and other States will follow.  One pol claimed, “There’s an imperative for change out there,” and perhaps that’s Uranus in Pisces finally waking legislators up to the dire necessity for health care to free people of the stress and worry over health costs hanging over their heads. Massachusetts will require all its constituents to have health coverage by next year or pay a penalty. It remains to be seen how the program will actually work in real life. Certainly it’s a step in the right direction provided, of course, that the state implements a program of affordable insurance as well. When we look at the chart of Massachusetts, we can see why it is taking the lead these days on a number of controversial issues, including same-sex marriage. Born legally on 1/6/ 1788, Massachusetts has Sun, Moon, Mercury, Pluto, and Saturn all in the progressive sign of Aquarius – no surprise there! Currently Saturn in Leo is opposing and therefore stimulating this stellium or planetary grouping and squeezing out the progressive juices.

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