OUR LIST of highlighted aspects for this week is a lengthy one — a testament to the amplified energies we’re all feeling. The effects of the Cardinal Grand Cross, which is exact next week, are brought more fully into our awareness early this week due to Mercury’s interactions with all four of the grand cross planets — Pluto, Uranus, Jupiter and Mars.
Adding to the excitement, Pluto’s transformational influence is heightened this week due to its change of direction on Monday. And, we have a Total Lunar Eclipse on Tuesday. In other words, our cup is full!
SINCE MERCURY, the planet of reason, thought and communication, is in dynamic relationship with all four of the grand cross planets this week, we can assume that one of our biggest tasks will be to observe and channel our mental energies in positive ways.
In the positive, Mercury in Aries can enhance inspiration and help us have the courage of our convictions in our speech. Mercury in Aries is used most beneficially through finding ways to inspire others through our words, while also being sure that we pay attention to the reactions our words invoke, to guide us in any further interaction.
In the negative, Mercury in Aries can be so focused on getting the point across, that it pays little attention to how its words are being received. Without sensitivity to the reactions and responses of others, words become weapons of the impulse of the moment, and conversations can disintegrate into misunderstandings, anger and alienation.
AS MERCURY squares Jupiter, aligns with Uranus and squares Pluto on Monday, we can expect plenty of mental activity, but not a lot of order or organization. This is good energy for brainstorming, but not the best for implementing. The practical application is best left for another day (or week) when Mercury is more grounded.
By the time Mercury opposes Mars on Wednesday, there’s plenty of steam built up, and the tension is heightened, especially between those with opposing viewpoints. The challenge with this opposition will be to be strong yet flexible, to know our minds without needing to force our opinions on others, and to be so clear in our self-understanding that we can clearly say “yes” or “no” from a very true place within us, not needing to resort to anger or defensiveness about what we think and what we want.
TUESDAY’S LUNAR ECLIPSE occurs in the very early morning hours in my part of the world — at 12:42am PDT. This eclipse is the sister of the Lunar Eclipse that occurred on October 18 of last year. During that eclipse, the Moon was in Aries and the Sun was in Libra (both at 26 degrees); at this week’s eclipse, the Moon is in Libra and the Sun is in Aries (both at 25 degrees).This means that we are working with themes that may be similar to what we were working with last October, but from a different angle and perspective.
The themes that accompany the Aries-Libra polarity include self-interest vs. the awareness of the needs of others, the desire to be autonomous vs. the desire for partnership, the courage to risk taking on new challenges vs. the skill needed to create harmony in existing situations.
THE SABIAN SYMBOL for the location of Tuesday’s Lunar Eclipse speaks directly to the polarities of Aries and Libra:
“An eagle and a large white dove change into each other: The interaction of the spiritual Will and of the Love principle when critical needs arise.”
Here’s a bit more of the interpretation of this symbol, by astrologer Dane Rudhyar:
“This symbol deals with the problems met by the seeker for the fulfillment of the higher life of Relationship. Implied here is a kind of Yang-Yin interplay. When the circle encompassing both principles rotate fast, they appear to change into each other. Consciousness operates beyond duality, because the polarized energies of the Soul (or spirit), Will and Love, though ever distinct, work for a single purpose.”
It is our challenge, with any Full Moon, to find a way to utilize and balance the polarities represented by the sign locations of the Sun and the Moon. This Sabian symbol provides the perfect visual image to help us imagine how that balance between Aries and Libra might best be represented in our lives.
ALTHOUGH the challenging grand cross energies are very prevalent now, we do have some planetary interactions late in the week that can help smooth the road a little. Blessed Venus, as she transits through Pisces, forms happy relationships with Jupiter on Thursday (trine) and with Pluto on Friday (sextile).
In actuality, Venus is acting as the release valve on the tensions represented by the opposition of Jupiter and Pluto (exact on Sunday, April 20). Here’s how that can work to our benefit:
Jupiter in Cancer is amplifying our need for emotional security. In the positive, this placement of Jupiter can support our connections to home and family. In the negative, it can increase our protectiveness and defensiveness, so that we more quickly go into “fight or flight” mode.
DIRECTLY OPPOSITE Jupiter in our skies, Pluto in Capricorn is focusing our attention on those attitudes, structures and traditional methods that have outlived their usefulness, that are now mostly serving as vehicles to keep us in positions of “less than.” Pluto helps tear down those outdated forms — a process that is needed, but can also be painful if we’re too attached to what has been.
The opposition between Pluto and Jupiter is working with that polarity between the past and the future, the need for security and familiarity vs. the need for advancement, which necessitates change.
As Venus softly steps into relationship with these two planets on Thursday and Friday, we can benefit from also softening our stance, if we are feeling polarized in some area. We may even call on Venus to amplify her Pisces qualities of compassion, understanding and unconditional love, as a way to assist all of us in navigating the challenges underway.
NEXT SUNDAY, April 20, is the beginning of our four-day “Festival of the Cardinal Grand Cross.” Two of the four planets in the grand cross form exact relationships that day: Uranus squares Jupiter and Pluto opposes Jupiter. The next day, Monday, April 21, sees the exact Uranus-Pluto square. On Tuesday, April 22, Mars finally steps in with an exact square to Jupiter; and on Wednesday, April 23, Mars is exactly opposite Uranus and square Pluto.
In other words, our cup overfloweth.
And yet, if we can maintain our balance and stay in center when feeling pulled into polarity, we will be able to take advantage of all the positive potentials of this configuration: the breakthroughs of Uranus, the expanded faith and hope of Jupiter, the internal courage of Mars retrograde, and the ability of Pluto to release the past in preparation for a much better future.
More next week, of course.
NorthPoint Astrology Blog: To read recent blog posts, please visit http://northpointastrology.blogspot.com/. I look forward to your comments!