Introduction: A Season of Eclipses
Dear Friend and Reader:
This season we have two New Moons in the sign Cancer, the second of which is a total solar eclipse, and two penumbral eclipses of the Moon (each at the time of the next two Full Moons).
This highly unusual combination of solar/lunar events will seem to spin the world on its finger. The first Cancer New Moon coincided with the Cancer ingress of the Sun by one day, on Monday, June 22 (the Cancer solstice). This was conjunct the asteroid Vesta, the revered erotic high priestesses of Roman mythology.
The second Cancer New Moon is a total solar eclipse in the last degree of that sign on July 21, which will be covered shortly in a Friday edition of Planet Waves Astrology News.
While not an eclipse, this week’s Cancer New Moon is no ordinary lunation, arriving close to the solstice and consequently touching the Aries Point in a square aspect. Energetically, it is very close to an eclipse, in part because it sets off the degree of a powerful total solar eclipse that occurred on June 21, 2001.
All told, this is astrology that pushes us into an acceleration curve. You will need to devise strategies for feeling like you are in control of your life. You probably are, but the feeling that you are not may stalk you at times.
In the background is the feeling of reaching for deeper and more meaningful connection to the larger world. The sign Cancer is one that is associated with pushing our way into physical incarnation, which we do mostly with our feelings. Yet Vesta teaches an element of detachment, as if we are being called upon to express devotion without much promise of a result.
Apropos of Vesta, I would be cautious about offering yourself up for too much sacrifice, and I suggest you keep questioning the whole concept, which the Course in Miracles tells us is the one and only thing standing between us and our freedom.
Yours & truly,
BY ERIC FRANCIS
Aries (March 20-April 19)
You may not be able to get your emotional needs met right away, but you’re in an unusual position to find out what they are. I suggest you put some energy into considering your feelings carefully, though the real grounding comes first from being explicit with yourself about what is important to you. The next step in the process is understanding how it came to be that you have so many injuries associated with the things you hold to be the most valuable and precious. You know your needs are simple enough. But there seem to be so many social pressures that pull you in other directions or set limits on your happiness that it’s necessary to look at the connections to the larger world around you. For example, do your relationship ideas really come from you? Do others support you in your desires, or do they enforce society’s expectations? Are you willing to push people whose friendship you depend on, or do you generally take a more passive approach and keep quiet about the most sensitive subject matter in your life? Many factors point to how the time to have a new policy has finally arrived, particularly if you want to make your way toward healing the inner divisions that stand between you and your happiness.
Taurus (April 19- May 20)
If you’re going to keep looking over your shoulder, make sure you’re also looking ahead. I’m not sure the past feels more appealing, but due to its complexity it may be more compelling, at least for now. Also, it seems to be a known factor, whereas the future seems to lack this quality. I would propose you know less about the past than you need to know, and you know more about the future than you’re letting on. In any event, I suggest that you build highly conscious relationships to both. However, this very moment is the one that’s calling for your attention. You’re at a tricky spot in your personal growth and in your personal healing journey. You may be discovering that you carry your personal story with you everywhere you go. You contain every relationship, and the paradoxes it arrives with. You contain every potential as well. The ongoing choice you have is which internal factor you identify with, paradox or potential, and how you draw information from either side of the equation. Though this choice often masquerades as ‘dealing with the past’, it’s much more about how we handle the emotions that our memories and history are stirring up. The question for you remains, as ever: to dare, or not?
Gemini (May 20- June 21)
A vitally important subject that you’re probably not talking about is showing up as insecurity or an unusually strong self-critique. You may fear that if you open up your mouth and say the wrong thing, or reveal something about yourself that’s too deep, you’re going to have irreversible consequences. You have so many needs that you keep secret, yet you feel like you have so much to express. What exactly is stopping you? Well, it’s a particular kind of urgent fear, mixed with a tinge of grief. I would propose that this is the chance of a lifetime: to have something you say actually make a difference in the world, and in your life. This topic relates to the women on your father’s side of the family, and how their journey has impacted your life and influenced who you’ve become. They experienced things in other times and places that have as much of an influence on you as anything in the room with you now. You seem to know intuitively what this is about, though you have little in the way of proof; only a complicated set of feelings that are aching to be worked out. In the most immediate sense, it all comes down to one question, which is: do your desires matter? If the desires of others did not matter, why should yours? There is an answer to that question.
Cancer (June 21- July 22)
A great deal will hinge on a single fact. You may well know the fact, and whether you take it into consideration is part of the issue; the rest involves how you apply it strategically. Pay attention to what you think is too trivial to make a difference. Look off to the sides of your consciousness. Listen to your intuition and your dreams for clues. As you maintain vigilance for this one seemingly small thing, you’re going to come into a lot of other data, and you need to pay attention to that as well. Live as if there is no such thing as a secret, particularly from yourself. I know plenty of other people live as if what they don’t admit to themselves doesn’t matter, but this has never been a luxury you could afford. Part of what you are looking for involves some hint from yourself about what you want the very most from life, and by that, I mean your life as an experience that nourishes you in the deep way that you nourish others. The issue seems to surround a fear that there exists some inner block too intractable to ever resolve. It’s usually considered simpler to pretend that it’s not really your most profound dream. In one sense, this is the story of our times, but it doesn’t need to be the story of your times.
Leo (July 22- Aug. 23)
Once I was listening to a speech in Harlem, and whoever was talking was doing an excellent job of explaining a complex situation; and someone in the audience called out, “Break it down!” The speaker was taking apart mystifying concepts and revealing them as the simple truths they possessed. Hearing analysis of ideas presented as something to get turned on about was eye-opening for me as a writer. Most of the writers whose work you read are more often ordered to keep it down to 1,200 words. I don’t suggest you do any such thing. Certain complex aspects of your life are beginning to reveal their elements. They don’t seem so daunting when you see them in pieces, or in layers, rather than as one mass. You’re certainly being assisted by people around you who are willing to analyze and account for their own complex minds. Bear one thing in mind, however. One or more key individuals in your life is being provoked by a force they don’t understand to reveal more than they normally would. Though this may qualify as ‘too much information’, I don’t suggest you respond that way. What they are revealing about themselves affects everyone; it is tribal property and deserves to be honored both as an individual process and as part of a necessary collective one.
Virgo (Aug. 23- Sep. 22)
If only you could get your relationships to do what you want them to do. But here is a question: are you willing to do what they want? I would think the feeling, as in most things relational, would need to be mutual, and mutual has been something that has not exactly worked out as well as you need in recent years. You seem to have a set of minimal, rock bottom requirements, and you can’t wonder why creating something so basic is fraught with so much challenge. The people who approach you often have various wild ideas that not only seem untenable, they threaten your delicate sense of stability and moreover, your predictions of the future. You tend to steady yourself with mental constructions that are not as solid as you think; when you get to a point where you feel some semblance of balance, it often turns out to be a kind of theory that can be shaken by another theory. You will find real stability as you embrace your process of coming to terms with yourself, your intentions and your deepest needs. But there is something else. Though few people are willing to come out and say it, the older models of relationship are not what’s going to get us into the future. Something else will, and part of what you are doing is helping co-create precisely that.
Libra (Sep. 22 – Oct. 23)
All careers involve service, but the question is to whom, and for what purpose. Then there is the bigger issue. Though we often speak of this, we rarely pull it off: the need to serve our own creative needs in a way that blends with the needs of the larger community. There are very few people whose daily work involves experiences that provide nourishment and fulfillment to both sides of this equation. We might wonder why this is so difficult, but the coming season presents an opportunity for you to align with just such a purpose. What is not often said is that the purpose starts with your own mission. It’s about abandoning every sense of ‘should’ and every false prophesy that was given to you. We are almost always told that the one thing we need or want to do is the one thing that’s not going to work. The formula, basically, amounts to this: What you are the best at, or the most devoted to, is the point of compatibility with the world around you. The difficulty is getting over the belief that precisely the opposite is true. There’s another challenge in that to do something even vaguely original, you’re the one in the position of building a structure around your intentions. Get used to the idea, and sketch your plans. One basic concept is enough for now.
Scorpio (Oct. 23- Nov. 22)
The planets seem to be playing an odd game with you. You keep seeing yourself in someone else, then you morph into them, then you morph back — as if you’re having both sides of the relationship yourself. (Note to Taureans, this may apply to you as well, and I suggest that Scorpios check in with the Taurus entry.) There is an often-described mirror effect in relationships, and it’s going to be having some decidedly unusual effects this month. They all involve not just your ideas about relationships (which, in our society, are usually based on too much unfounded theory and not enough action) but also your concepts of sex and of gender. You not only contain your opposite, you are your opposite. I suggest you work with any question of relationship as an inner phenomenon as well as an outer one. You can start with the most pressing questions that have affected your relationships over as long back as you’ve noticed the pattern. How would anything you’re experiencing in relationship to another person, particularly where sex is involved, translate to an inner emotional or psychological dynamic? There is more to this question than you may imagine, particularly as you aspire to the Holy Grail of sex: experiencing it as a spiritual phenomenon that draws all people to one common ground. Not two people: all people.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22 – Dec. 22)
Let’s talk about sex as an essential form of nourishment. It serves many other functions, and only rarely do we come around to this extraordinarily basic one. Parallel with this is a need for sexual healing that we all have, and that we tend to avoid. Our issues can seem so old and intractable that there is little hope of ever resolving them. Who, exactly, could help us? Even most therapists have no concept of how to work with deep sexual themes; so how could we expect someone we meet in a social environment to do so? I suggest you start by being open to the possibility. One clue I can offer you is that sex and sexuality must be considered outside the context of a relationship commitment or relationship model. Sex and relationships are almost always conflated in our society, and this is an intentional result of the most carefully cultivated social engineering program in Western history. While the two often arrive together, to make any progress on healing either, I believe that it’s necessary to handle them separately. The first barrier that nearly everyone has to go through in dividing them is their own guilt/shame complex. When you get there, don’t stuff it under the bed, or under your awareness; leave it out in the open, where healing is possible.
Capricorn (Dec. 22- Jan. 20)
Others are willing to give, to share, even to make sacrifices for you: as long as you are willing to be influenced by them. That influence may be profound. Yet in order to offer you any gifts, blessings, favors or a sense of authentic contact, bear in mind that they too must open up and be vulnerable as well. We could say that the planets this month and indeed the rest of the year portend a mutual opening, a desire to connect and the ability to create a common language. The communication factor is paramount now, and that involves developing the willingness, and the ability, to communicate about the most taboo topics. These have a tendency to be self-concealing; our lack of comfort and familiarity with them usually makes for short conversations, when long ones are called for. We also think we know a lot more than we do. Most women will tell you that most men have little interest in going down this kind of introspective path, and to the extent that this is true it’s going to take all of us to create space for the conversations that need to happen. At the bottom of this is a radical reformation of your values system that is eventually going to affect all aspects of your life. But the foundation is this: If you want to cultivate true self-esteem, start with how you feel and what you believe about your sexuality. Question everything.
Aquarius (Jan. 20- Feb. 19)
Sometimes in extraordinary times, life isn’t so extraordinary. The astrology certainly has been, and as you know it’s been focused on your sign through much of the year and in particular the past month or so. To be so up close to the Aquarius alignment of Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune, which is still cooking and will be cooking through the year, may feel like living underneath a spiritual microwave tower. The intensity of the Aquarius alignment is dropping off for the next few months, though as other planets make aspects, it will have little surges. This is likely to be more pleasant weather, though soon enough other factors (such as the next rush of Saturn opposite Uranus) will have you on your toes again. Why are you going through all of this, and will it ever end? You don’t want ‘it’ to end. What I suggest you aim for is to vibrate faster than the energy is coming at you, or rising up from inside you. This stretch of your life is about creating energetic mastery over your senses, your intentions and your ability to make choices. Ask yourself what you need to feel better. When in doubt, make a decision. If after a reasonable test that didn’t work, make another decision. Keep worry, regret and boredom as far out of the picture as you can. Just keep deciding.
Pisces (Feb. 19- March 20)
The Sun’s ingress to your empathic water sign Cancer will come as a relief, and with a dash of faith, open some doors for you. On many different levels you’ve been spreading your psychic wings; yet at the same time, you’ve been processing a lot of feelings, data and karmic material. This has made it difficult for you during the past few weeks to get any emotional grounding. The planets are now providing a gush of water and direct attention. They’re also reminding you that if you want satisfying contact, with yourself and with others, you need to tend the space constantly. Start by keeping your physical space as impeccably clean as you can. Listen to your emotions for signs of when you are feeling trust or mistrust; when you identify a need; and when it’s appropriate to take a chance. I suggest you make a yoga of taking risks without the expectation that any one of them will work out — just that it’s worth trying, if for no other reason than without reaching out you can be sure. Part of the flame you’re being called upon to tend involves balance; it involves being aware for when there is reciprocity in a relationship, and emphasizing that experience above the others that may seem to be available. The results, as always, will speak for themselves.