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New Moon in Taurus, April 21, 2012

© Ruth Sanderson

A small oasis of calm will descend on the New Moon at 01° 35′ Taurus on 21 April 2012, 12:18 AM PDT. This will be a very welcome change for anyone left feeling bashed about by Mars and Mercury stationing direct recently.

Enhancing Taurus New Moon’s naturally fertile, earthy nature is a conjunction with Ceres in Taurus, making this coming weekend the perfect time to schedule a visit to your favorite spa. Get a lovely massage, take nature walks or just hang out by the pool sipping soothing drinks. In touchy feely Taurus, Ceres loves to express nurturance through touch. I mean who doesn’t love getting a nice foot massage! The trine from Mars in Virgo stimulates the healing energy of Ceres and the New Moon because Virgo is noted for caring for the health and well being of others.

A sextile to the New Moon from Neptune in Pisces will help smooth any rough edges and allow us to gently slip sideways away from harsh realities, if only briefly. Music is a wonderful way to set the mood for relaxation of the mind and body along with a well chosen fragrance.

Saturn in Libra widely opposes the New Moon and helps reinforce the need to play well with others. Venus ruled Taurus generally appreciates Libra’s tact and both share a deep love of beauty. Saturn’s fondness for structure meets with Taurus’s approval because Taurus does like to keep surprises to a minimum.

Even though Venus in Gemini is a little too changeable for Taurus’s taste, it is semi-sextile to genial Jupiter in Taurus. This combination favors both having fun and making a little money, something we can all get behind.

Neptune blurs the edges of Mars in Virgo via an opposition and softens the aggressive tone of Mercury conjunct Uranus in Aries. We may have more than one reason to be thankful to Neptune because Mars is inconjunct Mercury, making tempers short because it insists on going over ALL the details.

Thankfully we aren’t quite to the point when Pluto in Capricorn and Uranus in Aries will start actively taking pot shots at one another . . . that will begin in earnest in late May and June. *sigh* For now, Pluto’s sextile to Chiron in Pisces continues aiding us in figuring out the reasons behind the unreasonable expectations we have for ourselves and others in our lives. I came across this wonderful quote from astrologer Liz Greene on Chiron apropos to the Pluto-Chiron sextile:

“The healing process can only begin when we disengage from our belief that life ought to fit a certain model. It is our worldview that is being challenged by Chiron, so that the place to begin is with the holes and fissures in our belief system”.

For those of us who feel stretched thin from the Mercury-Mars retrograde overlap and just want some rest and relaxation, this New Moon in Taurus has the potential to deliver it. It’s simple . . . tune out and ignore all the hyper-inflated Mercury conjunct Uranus in Aries rhetoric and tune in on your bliss. Politely but firmly stir the conversation away from inflammatory subjects or quietly walk away. As always, chose to practice kindness and tolerance!

On a personal note: The New Moon conjoins the cusp of my sixth house and is the reason why I feel a strong desire for peaceful routines in my daily life. When one’s Aries husband’s Sun has Uranus in Aries crossing it, last minute changes have been the rule rather than the exception.

Neptune continues to square my Venus as does Mars, not the most energizing combination. It takes more conscious effort to get going under this influence. Maybe it’s a good thing I have an Aries bouncing around keeping me motivated!

Venus in Gemini conjoins my seventh house North Node and sweetens my relationships via improved communications on her way past for the first time. She’ll be spending the better part of her retrograde period in my seventh house eighth houses and it will be interesting to see how that goes.


New Moon in Taurus, May 2-3, 2011

© Diane Lang

Despite the fact there are five planets in Aries, the overriding feel of the New Moon at 12° 31′ Taurus on May 2, 2011 11:50 PM PDT is deeply, powerfully feminine  – as in the ancient fertility goddesses one crossed at their own peril. This is a stately New Moon encouraging everyone to move through life with grace and dignity, a nice change from all the pushing and shoving to be first in line.

Ceres, goddess of agriculture and fertility, is in Pisces and forms a sextile to the Sun and Moon in fruitful Taurus, making this New Moon an excellent time to tend to one’s garden. Here in the northern latitudes Taurus is usually planting season when the soil has warmed enough for seeds to sprout, and with the added blessings from Ceres, this is a very promising time for seeding all types of new projects.

Something to always keep in mind about Ceres is how powerful she is, especially now when she is celebrating her daughter’s return from the underworld. Pisces suits Ceres and brings out her nurturing, loving side rather than the angry, determined mother who successfully backed Pluto/Hades into a corner and forced him to share her daughter, Persephone/Proserpina equally. She is blessing those with planets and Angles in the water and earth signs (Taurus, Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio, Capricorn and Pisces) in need a nice motherly kiss or two after being run over by the Aries train.

The Yod formed with Saturn in Libra at the apex and Ceres sextile the New Moon as the base is an important configuration in this chart. As Yods go this one is not so bad if we keep in mind Saturn is exalted in Libra and is comfortable with the slow, steady pace being set by Ceres sextile the New Moon in stately Taurus. Those feeling the impatience of the Aries planets the strongest will strain against this slowdown while those of us who are feeling wrung out and exhausted will LOVE it!

Poor Venus in Aries is heavily chaperoned now between the waning opposition from Saturn in Libra and the exact semi-sextile to Ceres in Pisces. Could be suffering the repercussions of listening to that wild man, Uranus in Aries, or perhaps due to pitching a jealous fit after obsessive Pluto whispered in her ear. In any case, she is behaving much more circumspectly for now but she has one more mad cap fling in her when she conjoins Jupiter at 24° Aries on May 11.

Mercury is direct and part of a waxing conjunction to Venus in Aries, exact on May 9. This is a great aspect for finding the right words to charm and amuse an audience, particularly one’s lover. Venus is a far better partner for Mercury than Mars or Jupiter who don’t necessarily bring out Mercury’s better qualities, at least in this Libra’s opinion. *grin*

We do have plenty of heat provided by a conjunction of Mars and Jupiter in Aries . . . maybe a bit too much in some cases. However, if you feel the need to make your case and push through some difficult issues, being able to draw on this exuberant, enthusiastic combination may just do the trick!

I’m just as happy Uranus in Aries, Neptune in Pisces and Pluto in Capricorn are out of orb this lunation. Don’t worry; they’ll be back meddling in our lives again.

Take time to get outdoors and commune with the natural world if possible on this New Moon. Go for a walk in the closest park or visit a plant nursery and enjoy the diversity of beautiful plants to be found there. If you can take a drive through the countryside, then keep an eye out for four-footed babies – lambs, calves and foals bouncing about. Relax already!

On a personal note: Ceres in Pisces is conjoining my IC and the New Moon in Taurus is making its self at home in my sixth house, with the Mercury-Venus conjunction in Aries opposing my Libra Moon. Not bad at all! I’m busy these days carting my tomato and pepper plants inside at night and outside during the day to harden them off for transplanting after it finally stops freezing at night. Our chicks are growing quickly and they too need tending to twice a day, cleaning their temporary home in a stock tank and making sure they have food and fresh water. We can’t rush any of these processes either . . . very much in keeping with this New Moon’s theme.

As of this writing, the Taurus grandson is still holding out and driving his very pregnant Gemini mom to the brink waiting for him to make his entrance. Any day now! :D


Saturday Archives: Another Perspective on Ceres – Natural Cycles

The doorway behind the liliesIn honor of the potent New Moon in Virgo, I dug out this article on Ceres, mother of Persephone and mother-in-law of Pluto.

Ceres is traditionally associated with hard work, mothering of older children, nurturing, food – especially fruits and vegetables, farming/gardening and other earthy matters.

However, a recent article in The Mountain Astrologer by Carrie Megginson, “Asteroid Goddesses and Birth Order”, shows Ceres in a different light. She suggests Ceres is far more pragmatic and bent on selecting and refining the characteristics of the external world to meet her needs and moods. The Moon is the place to look for endless warmth and nurturing. I found her idea of relating Ceres to the ever returning cycles of the farming year very sound: cycles of plenty and want, growth and death, preparation and consumption. It’s this awareness of natural cycles that I had in mind when looking at the charts of people I know to see the part Ceres played.

Ceres Aspecting Personal Planets

The first thing I looked for was Ceres forming any type of aspect to a personal planet (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars). Since I have no real sense of how powerful Ceres is I didn’t use an orb of more than three degrees at most. What I found was the type of aspect, either major or minor, didn’t seem to make that much difference; it was the connection that mattered. If there was no close aspect, then it appeared that Ceres was not particularly active in their charts or in their lives.

What emerged was those people with Ceres in aspect to their personal planets have an interest in and an awareness of the cycles of Nature. If they were farmers like my husband and father, then they were very in touch with the weather, the changing of the seasons and how that would affect the crops they were growing. My brother has been involved in research into the ebb and flow of the Arctic ice – very much related to the larger cycles! Others of us have a deep reverence and appreciation for this planet we live on and are always aware of what’s happening out-of-doors. There are lots of gardeners in this group of the sort who need to have some kind of green, growing things around them at all times – inside and outside. There are several people who could be considered pagan in their belief system.

Ceres in the Houses

When I looked to see what house Ceres fell in another interesting pattern emerged. I will stipulate that I only noted the house if I was sure of the birth time.

Two people had Ceres in their first house. One of those is my husband who has his Moon conjunct Ceres and his whole identity revolves around growing crops of one kind or another. He reads National Geographic magazine cover to cover and insists we sit and watch the local weather report together if possible. This is an individual deeply attuned to the rhythms of the Natural World. The other person is our beloved tseka who told us others see her slender self as an “Earth Mother” figure and whose paintings show a profound relationship with cycles, seasons and nature. For both of these individuals the face they show the world is one of a deep connection to Nature.

There were four of us with Ceres in the third house. Of those four, three of us use either photos we’ve taken or carefully selected pictures to illustrate the point we’re seeking to make in regards to the cycles of the world around us. The fourth person is a wordsmith who uses words to evoke the images. All of us are devoted to communicating our deep interest and awareness of Nature and her cycles.

The people with Ceres in their fourth house or on the cusp of the fourth house have sought to reconnect to the old ways in one form or another. Two of them are a gay couple who have a life style based on Wicca belief systems and honor those beliefs as their roots. Another makes the trip every July to the Black Hills in South Dakota to take part in the Sun Dance of the Sioux peoples even though as far as I know he’s not Native American in ancestry. By the way, that’s a very, very grueling way to celebrate the connection to Gaia . . .

The sixth house group is in the health-care field one way or another. My Scorpio sister has spent the better part of her adult life caring for elderly people in their homes, seeing that they have decent food and care and easing the way as their lives draw to a close. She has a strong sense of the cycles of growth and death. Another individual is determined to make changes to our broken health care system from the inside and she’s on her way to becoming a hospital administrator. And we are all familiar with Joe’s deep knowledge of healthy lifestyle and foods.

The two people with a twelfth house Ceres I don’t know well enough to get more than a sense that these are the ones who hold the dream of best possible dance of Gaia, possibly the most important ones of all even if they are not aware of it yet.

In conclusion, I wish to make a further distinction between those individuals that have a “green thumb” and those with an active Ceres. As a person with both, as well as a Virgo Midheaven, from my perspective Ceres energy concerns itself with the big picture, the larger cycles as well as the day-to-day cultivating of growing things, etc. From all the people whose charts I’ve noted, I get the sense they have an awareness of the necessity and importance of connecting to the deep rhythms of this planet we live on. How they apply that awareness is shown by the house Ceres is posited in.

I would love to hear from others on Ceres in their charts too!

Libra seeks balanceposted by Neith . . .

Image: This photo was taken in July, mid-summer where I live – so green and lovely before the August heat drains the colors.


Full Moon in Capricorn Thoughts

This time around the Full Moon at 26° Capricorn forms a T-square with my Chiron at 27° Libra and my Sun at 29° Libra. What came to mind is the need to communicate more with friends, both far and near plus catch up on reading the stack of new astrological reference books waiting for my attention – the lunation axis falls in my 3rd and 9th houses. Life has been busy between the garden, home and Real Astrologers!

We just finished picking the last of our June bearing strawberries – in mid-July – and promptly whacked off all the foliage to help reduce mold and pests. The new growth will be healthy and helps protect the plants over the winter. This process reminded me very much of the strong Ceres influence during the Cancer lunations. Ceres prompts us to care for ourselves and loved ones now with an eye to preparing for future cycles of change. Like those strawberry plants we all benefit from a thorough “housecleaning” to make way for opportunities of new growth to come.

The extended families so many of us live within require us to practice kindness, patience and forgiveness – sometimes on a daily basis. So far the sad situation I discussed in the previous post has not been resolved but we all go on. There are always bright spots like finding out my granddaughter is crazy about berries! Her parents have to wait until she’s eaten the rest of her food before giving them to her because that’s all she will eat. With both Native American and Scandinavian forbearers being a berry nut comes naturally!

The Full Moon falls in my 3rd house and that fits with having my sibling (Pedicularius) and his wife (Iris) commenting on my post on the Second House. My brother and I have very different political philosophies to say the least and with his Leo Sun exactly conjunct Saturn, he is staunchly conservative. We have to agree to disagree because we are both stubborn as rocks (lots of fixed signs in both charts).

Mars in Virgo is going to be crossing my Midheaven in about a week and past experience with Mars transits to the Midheaven and the 10th house, says plan on being very busy meeting career demands. Saturn will hit my Midheaven in almost exactly two months and then I will see if all my diligence and hard work will pay off. Still it wouldn’t surprise me if there is some delay there . . . Saturn in Virgo is going to review all the details very closely.

Jupiter is continuing through my 2nd house and will be stationing direct around the same time Saturn crosses my Midheaven. Hopefully that will result in a nice jump in my income! We’ll see. For now it’s back to being an “ant” and preserving the bounty from the garden during Cancer’s growing season against the time when the earth rests under Capricorn’s aegis.

For a more in-depth look at the Full Moon in Capricorn, please read my post on Real Astrologers: Full Moon in Capricorn, July 18, 2008

It’s always easier for me to take photos of the Moon when it’s just about full because of the time it rises in the evening. Hopefully the weather will permit us all to see the Moon/Jupiter conjunction early Thursday morning. Jupiter has been spectacular in the evening sky.

Summer Solstice June 20, 2008

mid-summer evening light

The summer solstice is the moment when the Sun enters Cancer. It’s the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere; the longest night in the Southern Hemisphere.

A chart cast for this moment gives us a sense of the tone for the next six months. Because Cancer is ruled by the Moon, the aspects to the Moon in the solstice chart are important. Here, we find the Moon in late Capricorn widely conjunct Jupiter. The Moon is also part of a Yod with Mars in Leo at the apex. Uranus in Pisces is sextile the Moon and is the other planet forming the base of the Yod. The base planets combine to give us innovation and optimism, somewhat at odds with the energetic element in flamboyant Leo. Pursuing creative projects is encouraged, but at the same time, waiting for definitive results before going public is also recommended.

Mars also opposes Neptune, and this aspect underlines the possibility that we will be less than clear about our goals and desires. Neptune can be very high-minded while at the same time being a little weak in the facts department. With Pluto back in Sagittarius and widely trine Mars, the urge to push ahead will be great. Be very careful to double-check all pertinent information before moving ahead with plans.

On the positive side, we have a lovely sextile between Venus, Ceres, and the Sun in Cancer and Saturn in Virgo. Healing, nurturing, and promoting healthy lifestyle changes are all favored and well worth putting energy behind now. Thankfully that rascal Mercury is direct in Gemini, giving mental clarity a boost.

Overall, the path most likely to bring good fortune is to stay with a modest approach rather then trumpeting one’s virtues to all and sundry. There is support for thoughtful, creative ventures benefiting the group as a whole rather than the individual. Being kind is always a good practice and usually generates goodwill. Remember to take time to nurture yourself, too.

Libra loves beautyposted by Neith . . .

Our poll will appear next week . . .