The Low-Down on the Far-Out

New Moon in Leo, August 2016

Chart for the New Moon in Leo
Chart for the New Moon in Leo

Don't be satisfied with stories,
how things have gone with others.
Unfold your own myth.
~ Rumi, The Essential Rumi

Aug.02 – NEW MOON in LEO (10:57 of Leo)

When I think of Leo, I think of leadership. Presence. Good hair.

Just as the Sun, which rules Leo, is physically the centre of our solar system, astrologically it is the centre of our conscious sense of self.

Leo and the Sun show where and how we shine, what lights us up and how our presence illuminates the world around us.

Being a Fixed Fire sign, Leo is about keeping your inner fire fed. It's about stoking and sustaining that life force inside you that gives you the will to live. It is the drive to find and fulfil a sense of purpose.

In that sense, Leo and the Sun are about self-expression�how we take our inner essence and radiate it out into the world.

In your natal (birth) chart, this expression is actually a combination of the Sun, Moon and Ascendant, each performing its unique role in the process of bringing what is inside of us out where the world can see and interact with us.

The Moon is our archetypal feminine energy�receptive, feeling, protective and sensitive to our connection to the world around us.

The Ascendant is our interface with the world. It's not so much what we want to express but how we go about it. It's like the clothing we wear around our sense of self. And it's how we take in and process experiences invoked by the world around us.

The Sun, however, is our basic sense of self that is being expressed and is connecting to the outside world.

While the Ascendant is more of how others see us, and the Moon is how we need others to interact with us, the Sun is more of how we see ourselves�the person who is interacting and being acted out.

During this lunar cycle starting with the New Moon in Leo, you have a chance to explore your sense of self and how you show (or hide) that self in the outside world.

To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.
~ Osho

The New Moon in Leo can bring out your creative side.

Now: every time I use the word "creative" I can just hear some people squirming and thinking, "But I'm not creative. I can't even draw a straight line!"

This isn't necessarily about artistry, although for some people it might be. Rather, this is about using your playful, spontaneous, unselfconscious urge to do something that gives you joy, satisfaction or a sense of purpose. The creative impulse simply takes whatever is inside you and brings it outside of you through some form of expression.

In the case of artists, this is done through their art. But you don't have to define yourself as "an artist" to express yourself through it. For instance, when you take a picture of a sunset, that picture is meant to express your awe about how magnificent nature can be, especially when you share that photo with others. It's not just about the art object, it's about conveying how you feel.

Leo is a giving, sharing energy. Sunny Leo wants to illuminate the world for everyone. The Leo part of you takes experiences, situations and things that move you in some way and wants to show it to others so that they can feel it too. You might share a photo of your summer vacation on Facebook to show how exciting, relaxing or rejuvenating it was. Or you might wear a scarf with colours and patterns that take your breath away, and then be delighted when others compliment you. Or prepare a scrumptious meal that makes your mouth water.

Even if you don't feel confident enough to do these things yourself, when you appreciate what someone else has created you are using the creative part of you. It could be something as sophisticated as visiting an art gallery, or something as ordinary as playfully moving to the music while doing the dishes or singing in the shower.

So don't try to tell me you have no creativity! Everyone has Leo somewhere in their birthchart�even you. :-)

Incongruity is another quality of quincunxes, and it�s also one of the main elements of humor, a juxtaposition of ideas or situations that just don�t fit together. Some of the biggest laughs happen when incongruity between two things is exposed in a bit of shock. When things go that badly askew, you have to laugh at them.
~ Donna Cunningham, Heinous Hybrids�Why the Quincunx is No Minor Aspect

The New Moon in Leo (conjunction of the Sun and Moon) has a number of characteristics astrologically that are bound to make this an intriguing, perhaps even magical 4 week lunar cycle.

Dominant Learning Triangle: Saturn, Neptune, New Moon in Leo

The most dominant energy connected to the New Moon is what Bruno and Louise Huber called a Learning Triangle. This is an aspect patter that contains a mixture of conflicting energies. This is not a problem to merely solve and put behind you. There is no simple resolution. Rather, its value is that if you follow the flow of energy, you will learn something valuable about what makes you tick and how life evolves.

Neptune plays a prominent, if somewhat obscure, role in the New Moon chart. For one thing, Neptune is quincunx the Sun and Moon (150�). Also known as the inconjunct, this is not usually considered to be a major aspect, although its influence can be strongly felt!

Major aspects typically connect planets in signs that share some quality. The Conjunction (0�) shares the same zodiac sign. The Square (90�) and Opposition (180�) share the same modality (Cardinal, Fixed, Mutable). The Trine (120�) connects signs of the same element (Fire, Earth, Air, Water). The Sextile (60�) joins signs with the same polarity (yin/yang, masculine/feminine).

What happens with signs that share none of these characteristics? This happens between signs that are next to each other in the zodiac (like Aries and Taurus; 30� apart), or signs that are 5 signs away from each other (150� apart). In this case we're talking about Leo (Fixed, Fire, Yang) and Pisces (Mutable, Water, Yin), which don't have an element, modality or polarity in common.

Getting these signs to talk to each other is like putting 2 people in a room that don't speak the same language, they come from very different cultures and they have no significant common experience with each other. And then you tell them they have to solve a problem together.

Ya, good luck with that.

The result, at least initially, is bound to be pretty chaotic, bizarre, confusing and frustrating. However, eventually if they keep trying, they can create a common language just out of their shared experience in the moment. They might start with gestures that are pretty universal, like a smile. They might try pointing to things or drawing with their fingers to convey ideas. Laughter is also universal, and can be a definite plus when trying to build a bridge out of thin air.

The quincunx (prounounced KWIN-kunx) is a think-outside-the-box dynamic. You "can't get there from here," at least not the usual way, so you have to figure out something new and innovative. And if some four letter words slip out along the way, well it's all part of the process. The important thing is to keep moving. Be open to the unexpected, because whatever the solution is, it probably isn't what you think it will be. It will more likely be a paradox or irony or something funny...if you take a few steps back and see it from a broader perspective.

When you're different, sometimes you don't see the millions of people who accept you for what you are.
All you notice is the person who doesn't.
~ Jodi Picoult, Change of Heart

When it comes to a quincunx involving Neptune, the joke is a cosmic one! At its worst, it can seem like the Universe is laughing AT you. At its best, it can be you laughing WITH the Universe and seeing how absurd it all seems when you let go of your attachment to what the outcome will be. The more you insist that the solution to the problem be a certain way, the more you block the natural flow of unfolding circumstances and ideas. The more you let go and flow with the quirks of the situation, the more open you will be to a solution you never even imagined that fits just right.

(A word to the wise: if you're faced with an urgent or dangerous situation, of course you'll need to be attached to the outcome to some degree in order to stay safe and secure. Use your best judgment when deciding how much flow is wise in your situation.)

The challenges and benefits of a Leo/Pisces connection could mean, for instance, that your self-expression will be most effective and satisfying if it is, ironically, more selfless. You might find that more of who you are emerges most when you're focused on something beyond yourself and your own interests.

If you're feeling a bit helpless or hopeless, you might try seeing the humorous side, like you were watching a comedy on TV. Or, if you're overwhelmed by the enormity of a challenge you're facing, consider that making it up as you go along and trying on unfamiliar ideas might be exactly the right way to handle the situation.

The [planetary] nodes of Neptune ...describe the evolutionary lesson of associating one�s creative effort with a greater spiritual meaning. It incites the individual to realize that his or her personal sense of purpose must be in alignment with the greater good of humanity and life as a whole. Neptune transmutes the personal effort to a transpersonal dimension.
~ Maurice Fernandez, Planetary Nodes from Saturn to Pluto

There's another Neptune connection in the chart, which is that the Sun and Moon are tightly conjunct the North Node of Neptune. "The what??" you may ask. You're probably familiar with the Lunar Nodes � where the path of the Moon crosses the (apparent) path of the Sun, from Earth's perspective. When the Sun and Moon are close to the Moon's nodes at the same time, they are aligned with the Earth so that it creates a Solar or Lunar Eclipse. The Moon's nodes are always exactly opposite each other. So, in the New Moon chart, the Lunar North Node is 12:57 of Virgo and the Lunar South Node is 12:57 of Pisces. (Note that I use the True Lunar Nodes, not the Mean Lunar Nodes.)

(And speaking of eclipses, the Full Moon that evolves out of this New Moon in Leo will be the Lunar Eclipse in Aquarius on Aug.18.)

Not just the Moon but all of the planets have "nodes" as well � places where their orbits intersect with the Sun's path. Unlike the lunar nodes, planetary nodes are almost never exactly opposite each other. The reason is because the Moon revolves around us (the Earth), so our view of the nodes is direct, whereas we and the other planets revolve around the Sun, so it's a more indirect perspective.

Planetary node astrology is a relatively new kid on the astrological block, but is gaining interest among astrologers. Generally speaking, when a planet is aligned with a planetary node (its own or another planet's), it's kind of like holding a magnifying glass up to that planet. It amplifies, accentuates or augments the expression of that planet.

With the New Moon conjunct Neptune's North Node, it suggests that the self-expression and life force of Leo will combine easily with Neptunian themes�for better or worse. At its best, this may make you especially receptive to creative energy, be it in the form of raising your own creative inspiration or being unusually open to creativity around you.

On the down side, your urge to surrender yourself to the flow of the Universe could go a bit overboard into overindulgence in escapism, like alcohol, drugs or other mood altering activities. Leo's need to feel confident, vital and purposeful might also make you more susceptible to magical shortcuts to fame and fortune without doing the work required to give it any real substance.

However, this is probably a time when a broad vision of potential, in yourself and the world around you, can provide an inspiring and meaningful context in which to focus your intentions. Just keep in mind that the vision in your imagination still requires concrete effort to get you moving in that direction, and that the goal tends to look different as you get closer to it. And that's okay; that's how it's supposed to be.

Time weighs down on you like an old, ambiguous dream. You keep on moving, trying to sleep through it. But even if you go to the ends of the earth, you won't be able to escape it. Still, you have to go there- to the edge of the world. There's something you can't do unless you get there.
~ Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore

Conveniently, Saturn is standing by to give a helping hand with the "concrete effort" part. Saturn is in trine aspect (120�) to the New Moon, and as such, provides some much needed stability and groundedness to the fiery potential of Leo and the visionary promise of Neptune.

Saturn is no stranger to vision and potential, as he travels through Fire sign Sagittarius. At best, Saturn will encourage you to bring your dreams of what could be down into the physical world where you can build that dream brick by brick. On the other hand, the manifest version of a dream tends to look rather different from the ultra-glossy picture in your mind's eye. This theme is echoed by the continuing square aspect (90�) between Saturn and Neptune which lingers for another couple of months or so.

Where Saturn can get tripped up is in the temptation to limit the potential unnecessarily, resulting in dogmatism or suppression of knowledge. Saturn knows that the closer and simpler the goal, the easier it is to reach it. The vision of Sagittarius and Neptune tends to be distant, remote and nebulous.

A conduit for molten steel

In an effort to maximize the success of the endeavour, the Saturn side of us may insist on controlling and regulating how much of that vision makes it into the concrete plan to make it happen. The trouble is: if we make our goal so mundane and close to the ground, to make it easier to achieve, then we risk strangling the enthusiasm, meaning, inspiration and greater purpose of the exercise.

Since Saturn's aspect to the New Moon is an easy flowing trine, there is a better chance that it will simply provide some structure, support and strength. An example is a conduit that provides supportive containment allowing liquid metal to flow safely and effectively. However, there is still that square between Saturn and Neptune, so the ability to channel Saturn's wiser, more tolerant side probably won't be without complications or issues.

The most exquisite paradox� as soon as you give it all up, you can have it all. As long as you want power, you can't have it. The minute you don't want power, you'll have more than you ever dreamed possible.
~ Ram Dass

By interacting with the Saturn-Neptune square, the Leo New Moon is in a somewhat precarious situation. You might feel you must choose sides in some Saturn-Neptune related dilemma in your life. However, the Dominant Learning Triangle's movement of energy offers a chance to discover new ways to work with the problem.

Dominant Learning Triangle: Saturn, Neptune, New Moon in Leo

This is a mirror image of the Learning Triangle we had at the New Moon in Cancer last month. The difference (besides the New Moon being in a different sign) is that in the previous one, the trine was to Neptune and the quincunx was to Saturn. This time it's the other way around. So this is a time of balancing out the learning and growth process you were engaged in throughout July. So let's take a deeper look at the dynamics of this aspect figure.

The Leo side of the New Moon will find it easier to work with Saturn, being in a fellow Fire sign and having an easier connection to Saturn through the trine. On the other hand, the quincunx to Neptune could make it tricky to stay connected to the original inspiration and vision of what you're building. And in order to reconnect with that inspiration, you might have to let go of the structured logic and methodology of Saturn, which can disrupt that lovely trine cooperation.

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This can become a bit of an awkward balancing act. If you side with Saturn, with his agenda of predictable outcomes, you risk limiting your creative potential. You could also alienate the Neptunian part of you that needs to stretch beyond boundaries to participate in something greater than yourself.

And if you favour Neptune with its glowing promise of being uplifted to the greatest potential you can imagine, you risk losing your way off the beaten path and possibly winding up somewhere that's not in your best interest.

In other words, you might get caught in the middle of the Saturn-Neptune controversy.

Probably the worst thing to do in that situation is to expect it all make sense! Those two planets are like a perpetual quincunx at the best of times and tend to mix together like oil and water, especially when joined together by a stressful square aspect. They're not about to hold hands and sing Kumbayah.

However, Saturn might be persuaded to bang a drum to keep time while Neptune chants some OMs. And Neptune may be content to smudge and decorate the lecture hall that Saturn builds. There are ways to get them to work together, but it takes some doing.

The New Moon in Leo gives you a chance to channel this sacred struggle in creative, innovative and imaginative ways. When you feel like you're caught between a Neptunian rock and a Saturnian hard place, try singing a song that expresses how you feel. Write a poem. Dance it out. Play with your food. Create an affirmation that honours both the bad and the good.

Listen closely to the whispers of each planet's energy inside of you. What are they saying? What does Saturn really want, as he tries to get you to conform to a certain standard? What is Neptune actually trying to reach when it wants to let go of those standards?

Explore and celebrate the mystery that is you!

Sadness gives depth. Happiness gives height. Sadness gives roots. Happiness gives branches. Happiness is like a tree going into the sky, and sadness is like the roots going down into the womb of the earth. Both are needed, and the higher a tree goes, the deeper it goes, simultaneously. The bigger the tree, the bigger will be its roots. In fact, it is always in proportion. That's its balance.
~ Osho, Everyday Osho: 365 Daily Meditations for the Here and Now

Aug.05 – Venus enters Virgo (until Aug.29)  (Aug.06 in AU)

Under this transit, it is possible to fall in love with purity, precision and analysis. It is a time to invest in health, efficiency, and your contribution to the world around you. The beauty is in the details, as you embrace a labour of love in your life. Just don't get so enamoured with pristine splendour that you get lost in perfectionism and unable to accept the natural imperfection that exists in all life and humanity. Each of us is the Universe's perfect child, but we are also in a state of becoming and growing and are therefore likely to make human mistakes. Remember that we're here for the journey, as much as the destination. This part of the journey takes us into service and devotion, whether that is focused on another person or on ourselves.

Aug.06 – Mercury square Saturn (09:49 of Virgo/Sagittarius)

Your thoughts, ideas and communication need to become structured, rational and discreet, although this may not be easy to achieve. You may have to work extra hard to get your point across now, since others might be resistant to your ideas or may not be familiar with the basic concepts. It is a time to be clear, objective and down-to-earth in your communication and thinking, but equally important to do this without going overboard and becoming rigid, autocratic or over-cautious. If you find yourself stuck in a "glass half empty" frame of mind, you might be sagging under the weight of melancholy ...Or, it might mean you are coming to terms with some hard realities and decisions and feeling the gravity of the implications. But also check to be sure you're not taking yourself and your situation too seriously. By applying your best efforts, this can be a very productive time, especially with anything involving communication, writing, organising or logic.


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Aug.06 – Venus square Mars (01:41 of Virgo/Sagittarius)  (Aug.07 in UK, AU)

Your receptive, diplomatic side is arguing with your assertive, decisive side. The result is either a battle of wills between your Yin and Yang, or a new creative energy that harnesses both. This could manifest in the form of relationship problems, financial struggles, arguments about control, or you are propelled to take action with plans that have been percolating for a while. If you're usually more comfortable with your Yin side (receptive, diplomatic), you might feel a bit backed into a corner or forced to negotiate under pressure. If you're more at home in your Yang side (assertive, action-oriented), you may feel compelled to blunt or sheathe the sword you would prefer to smite your enemy with. Either way, this is about balancing the two sides and finding a new cooperation that works for both.

Aug.07 – Mercury opposite Neptune (11:18 of Virgo/Sagittarius)  (Aug.08 in AU)

Inspired thinking, mental fantasy, imaginative ideas and lucid dreams are likely during this transit. This can result in enormous creativity that sees inspiration and magical ideas in the world around you (be sure to write them down to develop later). Your communication may be unusually intuitive and inspiring now. However, it can also be a time when your perceptions about reality are a bit off and coloured by wishful thinking and irrational conclusions. Doing a reality check with a trusted friend or advisor is a good idea, especially if you are trying to make important decisions right now. But be sure to explore any non-rational or irrational thinking, since the veil between the conscious and unconscious mind is thin now and you can learn much by observing your thoughts and perceptions.

Aug.08 – Mars goes Out of Bounds (02:22 Sagittarius to 22:51 Capricorn; until Oct.30)  (Aug.09 in AU)   ("What does Out of Bounds mean?"   "What is Declination?")

Mars goes Out of Bounds (OOB) for about 6 weeks. During that time you might encounter new experiences related to courage, aggression or taking action. For example, you may find you are seized with inspiration to champion a cause, or you might decide that now is the time to do something you've been hesitating about for a while and were just waiting for the right moment.

There is always the less constructive side of Mars to watch for, as well. For instance, bold action could become reckless if it's not balanced with wisdom, realistic expectations and awareness of the consequences that you might have to live with afterwards. Anger and frustration could flare up more easily or intensely than usual, which is probably best expressed in constructive ways that don't leave ashes and ruins behind you.

Your instincts could be finely tuned during this time, picking up on distant or subtle signals and relaying these to your impulses which result in doing things without a lot of conscious forethought. This can feel exciting or energizing, but remember that you will still have to live with the results, so if you find this is creating problems it might be best to slow things down a bit so you can consider your best course of action before actually doing it.

It's also possible that during this time you won't notice much at all. Not everyone is attuned to the OOB Mars energy, although you still might observe it in others around you. Or, your experience of this Mars energy might be a quieter signal that you need to focus on more carefully to get a clear sense of it.

Aug.09 – Mercury conjunct North Lunar Node (12:57 of Virgo)  (Aug.10 in UK, AU)  ("What's a Lunar Node?")

Ideas are in focus, especially when they're shared with others. It could be a time when you observe or notice something new, giving you a new perspective that you will mull over for the coming several months. Or you might be called upon to give a talk or presentation that shares information with others. It might be an especially active time with emails, Facebook, Twitter or texting. Communication and collection of thoughts and ideas is the central theme here. Keep your eyes, mind and curiosity open – the world could be showing you something important and fascinating!


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Aug.10 – Mercury enters the Retrograde Shadow (14:49 of Virgo; until Oct.06)   ("What's the Shadow?"  Read my articles about Retrograde Cycles.  Read my article about Mercury Retrograde.)

Mercury is now "in the Shadow" � the area of Zodiac where it will later go retrograde in about 2� weeks time. During its retrograde cycle, Mercury travels through the same span of the Zodiac three times (called the Shadow). The first time through, it is going in direct motion (moving forward), then retrograde (looks like it's going backwards), and then direct again. This means there is a more extensive process of development and change involved with things that Mercury influences�ideas, thoughts, frame of mind and mental focus. It also concerns the collection, exchange, analysis and organisation of information. All forms of communication are also affected. This includes not just talking, but also email and snail mail, the Internet, the media in general, books and magazines, as well as public transit (buses, trains, etc.) and neighbourhoods.

The situations developing over the next couple of weeks (leading up to when Mercury actually goes retrograde) will likely require further research, deeper consideration and adjustments to unexpected discoveries over the next couple of months. Expect changes in your plans, increasingly disrupted communication, and new information coming to light that may not fit conveniently into your plans. It's wise to leave lots of extra time to do things, to plan future projects and get to wherever you're going. Patience is a valuable quality during this time. If you must make important decisions during this time, try to build some flexibility into your plans to allow for later changes�or if possible, you may want to delay final or irrevocable decisions until well after Mercury goes direct.

Here are the key dates of this Mercury cycle (for North American Eastern Time):

Aug.10 – Mercury Direct trine Pluto (15:25 of Virgo/Capricorn)  (Aug.11 in UK, AU)

It is possible to dive deep below the surface now, in your perception of situations, other people and yourself. If you have been working on trying to understand the deeper motivations and dynamics of what is happening in your life, there could be a breakthrough now. The light may finally go on in the darker corners that have eluded you, and your penetrating insight. You could find a way to articulate these perceptions and speak your mind in a way that is unusually powerful or intense (so be careful you don't inadvertently blow your audience out of the water). This transit can bring an opportunity to shed and leave behind old worn out perceptions or ineffective forms of communication. Try writing down your thoughts and ideas to capture the energy of this transit. This is the only exact pass for this transit, since Pluto was out of range when Mercury came through this area two months ago.

This is the first of 3 passes: Aug.10, Sep.20, Sep.23.

Aug.12 – Jupiter opposite Chiron (24:20 of Virgo/Pisces)  (Aug.13 in UK, AU)

Jupiter, the planet of justice, hope, confidence and broad perspective is tipping the balance with Chiron, the planet of wounding, healing, chronic uphill climbing, and paradox. This could bring optimism to persistent struggles, or it might weigh your confidence down with old woundedness.

On the difficult side, you might feel like you're fighting fly up to reach a positive outlook on life, while feeling like there's a ball and chain of struggle and persistent problems wrapped around your feet. This could possibly manifest as health issues, or general melancholy and discouragement. It might also show itself through giving or receiving criticism and judgment. Negative or harsh opinions may amplify problems. You might also find that discouragement over lack of progress with problems could lead to feeling that your efforts are pointless or not worth it.

On the other hand, on the positive side this transit can inspire you to reach out for a more uplifting and understanding of the struggles and difficulties that are plaguing you. It can be a beneficial time to learn more about what the problem is really made of, especially on a detailed level. Expanding your awareness of the true nature of these issues can broaden your perspective of them and help you reframe the problem in a way that leads to a better solution. In particular, viewing struggles (especially chronic or long-term ones) through a spiritual lens may allow you to see them in a more meaningful way and give you a clearer sense of purpose.

What is called for is a better balance between optimism and discouragement, overconfidence and shame. It can be easy to focus on one while losing sight of the other, which tends to create a reactive effect that just amplifies both extremes and makes you feel worse. It may help to make small adjustments rather than big ones � the balance might seem to take a bit longer but it is likely to bring peace more effectively.

Jupiter is opposite Chiron: 1908, 1921-22, 1936, 1954-55, 1968-69, 1982-83, 2001-02, 2015-16, 2029, 2046-47.

This is the last pass of this transit for this current Jupiter-Chiron cycle. Dates for the current Jupiter-Chiron cycle:

Aug.13 – Saturn Stationary Direct (09:46 of Sagittarius; until Apr.06.2017)  (Aug.12 in AHST)  ("What's a Station?"  "What does Retrograde mean?"  Read more about Retrograde planets.)

For up to a week before and after this date, Saturn�s energy is especially intense and strong. You might experience this as physical or mental heaviness or sluggishness. You might find you have to "get real" with some responsibilities, or make some difficult decisions. This can be a turning point in long-term projects and plans that you've been developing over the last 5 months or so. Or, you may start to deal differently with old limitations, either finding ways to move beyond them or finding ways to make peace with them. If you�re dealing with closure or endings in some area of your life, this could be a time when you can finally start to let go and move forward.

Aug.13 – Venus square Saturn (09:46 of Virgo/Sagittarius)  (Aug.14 in AU)

Finances, relationships, social contacts and/or pleasures may seem blocked or require extra effort right now. Manifesting your desires may require added hard work, but this struggle could also bring you closer to your goals. It may feel like there is a huge rock blocking your path that keeps you from fulfilling your heart's desire. It may be necessary to face some difficult aspect of your situation before it is possible to know how to proceed. This is ultimately a problem to be solved by confronting that which is unrealistic, unworkable, or just not in your best interest. This can also be a time when you arrive at a crossroads and must make some firm choices, or when circumstances might force you to change your direction. This transit can make your choice clear, although it might not be the one you hoped for.

Aug.14 – Venus opposite Neptune (11:08 of Virgo/Pisces)  (Aug.15 in AU)

Romance, idealism, fantasy and imagination are blossoming into a bright aura right now, which is likely to influence your relationships, interactions, finances and values – for better or for worse! Compassion, caring and selfless giving can be good ideals to aim for, as long as you remember that ideals tend to lose some of their shiny glow when they're translated into hard reality. If you forget this, the end result may be disappointing or disillusioning. Disappointment may also indicate that there have been hidden hopes or high expectations that no one can really live up to. Aim to balance your innocence and longing with the judgement of your older, wiser, mature self; and do a reality check with a trusted friend or adviser if in doubt. That said, this can also be a very creative and inspiring time – just remember to keep one foot on the ground.

Aug.16 – Venus conjunct North Lunar Node (12:47 of Virgo)  (Aug.17 in UK, AU)  ("What's a Lunar Node?")

Your love, beauty and joy are especially visible to others right now. You are likely to be at your most attractive � both in body and personality. You could become a magnet for what you desire today � just be careful what you ask for, since you might get it! What you attract to you might be material abundance, admiration and appreciation from others, or perhaps a sense of well-being that brings you into a more beautiful balance with those around you. This can also be a time when you begin a new relationship or social contact, or perhaps you begin a journey to make yourself or your world more beautiful, loving and kind. At worst, or if other stressful transits are also in effect, you might also have a tendency to fall into over-indulgence, empty glamour or compulsive craving.

Aug.16 – Sun trine Uranus (24:22 of Leo/Aries)  (Aug.17 in AU)

You are more open than usual to spontaneity, surprises and "flying by the seat of your pants!" Your sense of humour and fun are let loose during this transit, as is your ability to break out of old outworn habits. You may get a flash of insight, a burst of courage or a surge of inspiration under this transit. The spirit of who you are can become released now, possibly leading to you behaving a bit "out of character." It's a great time to try new things and experiment with something that's out of character for you. In fact, it may be surprising how easy it is to break out of your usual much so, that it's good to be careful not to be too reckless under this transit. If your self-confidence, self-expression or self-esteem have been stifled or dampened lately, these could come flying out rather erratically, carelessly or chaotically. Strive to have fun pushing the envelope without ripping it. ;-)

Aug.17 – Venus trine Pluto (15:17 of Virgo/Capricorn)  (Aug.18 in UK, AU)

Close one-on-one connections with people (close friends, lovers, partners of all kinds) will tend to gravitate to a deeper, more intense level now. Instead of automatically doing the diplomatic, "nice" thing, you may find it is more fulfilling to share more of your authentic feelings. It may be possible now to connect with people on a deeper level, while still ensuring that your interests are equally balanced with theirs. The trick is to do this without trying to control or overpower the other person, and it may be easier to avoid those traps now. You could make some deeply intimate connections with people under this transit. Financial dealings with other people may also go smoothly, although it might be wise to get clear confirmation that you're both on the same page about the fine print.

Next Update:  LUNAR ECLIPSE ~ FULL MOON in AQUARIUS – available by August 19, 2016.

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