April 7th-13th: Retrograde Season

This week is devoid of any new major transits of any kind. When there are no major planetary transits, this doesn’t necessarily equal a quiet week. We are still feeling the effects of the heavy Mars/Saturn contact from last weekend, and Mercury and Jupiter are still continuing their retrograde cycle. Saturn will be entering retrograde on April 17th, so it will be useful to utilize the time leading up to that to prep ourselves. We will dive more deeply into Saturn’s retrograde next week, but for now we will look a little into what we can expect.

Saturn’s retrograde cycle will take place in Sagittarius, beginning at 16 degrees and traveling all the way back to 9 degrees Sagittarius in September. Seeing as this retrograde will last five months, the lessons are spread out. While they may be intense, it differs from a Mercury retrograde, whose complexities are packed into just a few weeks. A Saturn retrograde is more like a good story, with an introduction, build-up, climax and conclusion.

Jupiter will be in retrograde with Saturn through mid-July, so the next few months will be more confusing, with greater clarity coming by the end of July. While Jupiter retrogrades affect our ability to expand our sphere of awareness and influence, Saturn retrogrades impact us on a more karmic level. Saturn tends to look for the chinks in our armor and remind us of them, sometimes in uncomfortable ways. In Sagittarius, the sign Jupiter rules over, Saturn is much more intimately connected with the Jupiter retrograde. While we may wish to expand our awareness, there are some issues in perspective that may hold us back from seeing the big picture. We’ll have to deal with our perceptions of ourselves and others. We can only see the world through the lens we are given, and it is up to us to keep this polished and clear. Our unique viewpoint allows us an individualized view of the world, but Jupiter longs for more. Jupiter wants to see things in an even wider scope. This will impact things like study, travel, business and expansion in literal and figurative ways.

If you look at your Vedic chart and see which house Sagittarius is in for you, you will be able to see where the Saturn retrograde will be operating. I will do a video soon about the different houses and how the Saturn retrograde could impact each.

In the Vedic world, Aries season does not begin until Saturday the 14th when the Sun enters the physical celestial zone of Aries in the night sky, actively beginning the solar sidereal calendar for the year. We are still in the Pisces zone of collective consciousness, and it is easy to sink a place of confusion or feel overwhelmed. There is a lot of energy zooming around, and more sensitive people could feel barraged by this. As more planets shift over into Aries, it should be easier to make a clear-cut choice and not be so influenced by others. Our energy will start to take on more pronounced boundaries.

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March 3rd-9th: Swinging of the Scales

This week begins with Mercury entering Pisces on Saturday the 3rd. Mercury typically only spends a few weeks in a sign, but due to the upcoming retrograde (beginning on March 22nd) the time will be extended, meaning this Mercury in Pisces period will last until May 9th. This is a bit of an unpleasant locale for Mercury to transit, and in Vedic astrology the planet of communication is considered to be debilitated in Pisces. Mercury is a planet driven by logic, technology and analysis. The watery, idealistic, abstract qualities of Pisces tend to confuse Mercury, who prefers a more direct approach. During this two month period, there will tend to be a line of conflict between rational thinking and more intuitive or spiritual ways of looking at the world. This conflict can come up between two people, between groups of people or even inside of one’s self. The tendency toward confusion will be greater during this time, so it will be important to be honest and direct with yourself and others as much as you can. The Mercury in Pisces effect is akin to a whirlpool and can sweep us up in its pull. We are likely to experience new and exciting ideas and ways of looking at the world, but we will have to be willing to adjust our beliefs and views accordingly.

Mercury will be aided by Venus, who is also transiting Pisces at this time. Venus is considered exalted in Pisces, and will be able to assist Mercury while the two share the sign. By the time the retrograde hits later this month, Venus will be traveling on to Aries so will leave Mercury alone to handle the disorienting waters of Pisces (starting March 26th). We can prepare for this time by utilizing the positive poles of the Venus in Pisces transit: compassion and empathy for humanity, and a cosmic creative connection that allows us to spread beauty and art that is divinely inspired. We can spread this in both a literal creative way and also in the way we approach the world, by staying connected to the source.

Mars provides a fire as it steps into Sagittarius on Wednesday the 7th; this transit will last until May 2nd. Mars aids us on the physical plane by giving us motivation, energy and momentum. The Sagittarian flavor will provide us with a restless sort of wanderlust and need to expand our horizons. We may wish to break out of old routines or let go of limiting beliefs that kept us feeling trapped and cornered. Mars in Sagittarius desires unlimited horizons and open skies. Saturn is currently in Sagittarius as well, and will influence Mars as it shifts toward conjunction with Saturn. Any time Saturn enters into a conjunction with a planet, it sobers its energy and will require it to take on more structure and boundaries. This is a strange effect when it takes place in Sagittarius, since the sign usually rejects limitations. We may need to balance out our desires for expansion with the more linear timetables of Saturn. Saturn will aid Mars by keeping the fiery energy from overextending and burning out, but we will need to exercise patience as it will also slow down the process. While Mars in Sagittarius will make us want to leap forward, Saturn in Sagittarius reminds us that we should wait until we are sure we have some solid ground to land on.

This big week continues as Jupiter enters the retrograde cycle on Thursday the 7th. This retrograde takes place in the sign of Libra, and will last until July 10th. Jupiter is currently located at 29 degrees Libra, the final degree. When a planet is at this 29 degree mark, there is a sense of discomfort as it seeks to cross into the more stable 0 degree placement of the following sign. It’s a bit like the elements in the periodic table that seek out that extra electron in order to stabilize. Jupiter gets halted in its tracks because of the retrograde and will slide all the way back to 20 degrees Libra before resuming direct motion in July. Jupiter in Libra has encouraged us to expand our partnerships and relationships with others, but here in the retrograde period there is some shakiness. Jupiter may act in unpredictable ways as it retraces its steps. Our connections with others may shake apart, reform or dissolve entirely. We may feel uninspired in certain configurations and choose other ones that seem unexpected. The need for balance may manifest in surprising ways. The Libran scales swing back and forth during this four month period, which is bound to keep us on our toes. This should primarily affect working relationships and creative partnerships.