The Low-Down on the Far-Out

Lunar Eclipse in Capricorn, July 5, 2020

Chart for the Full Moon in Capricorn
Chart for the Lunar Eclipse ~ Full Moon in Capricorn

Lunar Eclipse
Full Moon in Capricorn:
Systemic Wounds and
the Healing Crisis

These so-called bleak times are necessary to go through in order to get to a much, much better place.
~ David Lynch

Jul.05 – LUNAR ECLIPSE ~ FULL MOON in CAPRICORN (13:37 of Capricorn)

Do you have eclipse fatigue yet? I know I do! Just when we thought we could breathe a sigh of relief on the other side of eclipse season, along comes a third one – the Lunar Eclipse in Capricorn.

And as if that's not weird enough, the New Moon following this Lunar Eclipse is yet another New Moon in Cancer. This is actually not that unusual – when we have a New or Full Moon at 0 degrees of a sign (like the Cancer Solar Eclipse of Jun.21), the next one is usually 28° or 29° of the same sign.

...But I digress.

Back to the current Lunar Eclipse – the last in a sequence of 3 eclipses. This Lunar Eclipse is in Capricorn (the last one was in Sagittarius). Capricorn is ruled by Saturn, who has been a busy boy of late. Four days ago, Saturn retrograded back into Capricorn where he's been since December 2017, except for his brief test-run in Aquarius (Mar.21 to Jul.01) to get the venue ready for the big Jupiter-Saturn-Aquarius-Zero-Degree-Conjunction symposium scheduled for Dec.21 of this year.

(And you thought 2020 was going to be boring.)

...But I digress. Again. (Mercury, behave yourself.)

So, this lunar eclipse, like the one in Sagittarius on Jun.05, is just a penumbral lunar eclipse whose precision is annoyingly sloppy by Capricorn standards. You won't get much of a light show from this kind of eclipse, even at the best locations (South America, Antarctica, eastern Canada and USA, and much of Africa and western Europe). The Moon only dips into the outer shadow cast by the Earth, so its light may dim somewhat, perhaps with a pale yellow or pinkish colour, but doesn't usually become deep red or orange like a total lunar eclipse.

That said, astrologically this "mini-eclipse" doesn't necessarily mean it will have "mini-effects."

Life is going to throw you some blocks.
You will decide if they are going to be
your stumbling blocks or your building blocks.
~ Saji Ijiyemi

Let's start with the easy stuff – Mercury retrograde in Cancer, for example. Yes, this could actually be the friendlier side of this eclipse. ;-) Mercury direct is just a week away (yippeee!!). For now, he's conjunct the Sun and opposite the Moon, bringing an aura of thoughtful contemplation to the lunar eclipse.

Mercury Retrograde aspects

Venus in Gemini is disposited by and in semisextile aspect (30°) to Mercury. This can contribute a reflective, introspective, tender, sensitive quality to how we connect with companions, buddies, lovers and significant others—although this could involve interactions that are sweet or sour. It might be a good time to talk about the subtle ways you connect, or perhaps discuss issues that are irritating or unsatisfying.

Lunar Eclipse T-square

Mercury is also square Mars and Chiron, suggesting you could be extra sensitive to controversy, disagreement and conflict, especially if it pushes old emotional buttons. These three are part of a T-square with the Sun and Moon (discussed at length below).

For now, be aware that your tolerance for discord could be a bit short for a while. Stay aware of what's going on inside of you and what old issues are being triggered. Allow yourself plenty of time to process and let go of the stress. And know when it's time to step back and give yourself (or the other person) some space. On the plus side, this combination can also sensitize you to the suffering of others through empathy, bringing a fresh understanding of them through recognition of your own struggles, and vice versa.

The eclipsed Moon is Out of Bounds by declination, which was also the case with the Solar Eclipse in Cancer. The OOB Moon seems to raise the emotional pitch and amplify whatever you're feeling. If you're outraged or upset or angry or in grief, this can feel a bit stronger than usual. If you're lonely, depressed, feeling isolated or marginalized, this could be intensified as well. Do what you need to do to take care of yourself. Reach out to others when you need to – human connection, even at a distance, can make a huge difference.

The OOB Moon can also make it tempting to give up on others – you might feel the urge to let go of a friendship or relationship that's not working well. Unless you've given it a lot of thought, try not to make impulsive decisions since you might find a different perspective about the situation that makes an extreme response unnecessary.

Capricorn Stellium

The Moon is also part of a Capricorn Stellium which includes Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto. Capricorn's ruler Saturn is in the final degree of that sign. Usually this would have an energy of "I'm almost there but not quite," but since Saturn is retrograde it's more like "I'm back again and seeing the things I need to change before I can move on." So, if you feel like you're a bit stuck or obstructed, do what you need to do to clear away the debris in preparation for what comes next—and be patient!

There is a triple conjunction of Jupiter, Pluto and asteroid Pallas Athena, all at 23° of Capricorn. The mythological Pallas Athena is about independent feminine energy that isn't afraid to step up and embrace her Animus. She can harmonize masculine and feminine energies – she is a formidable warrior, yet also associated with weaving and crafts, and is concerned with justice and wisdom. Being precisely conjunct Jupiter and Pluto, Pallas brings a need to balance aggression with compassion, the courage of battle with the detachment of wisdom, and retribution with good judgement.

Wedge figure to Uranus

Uranus in Taurus forms a Wedge aspect pattern with the Sun and Moon. Despite the Capricorn roadblocks, limitations and caution, Uranus is here to tell you that you neither have to remain stuck there, nor should you.

Uranus is currently the only planet in a Fixed sign, so his message is that it's possible to be both concrete and visionary, stable and spirited. Look for innovative ideas for change that can be put into practice without ripping apart what's good about the status quo.

The Sun is tightly conjunct asteroid Vesta (one itsy-bitsy minute of orb). This suggests an essential resource to have is a safe place to retreat to (with or without a friend) and nurture yourself when things get stressful. Have a safe place to seek refuge, and exercise safe practices to keep yourself and others from harm, whether it's your home nest or with your family or your best friend.

Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.
~ Cornel West

Chiron forms a T-square aspect pattern with the Sun-Moon opposition. A T‑square typically brings tension, conflict, controversy and complications, although this can also be motivating, dynamic, and activate progress in a difficult situation.

T-square pattern

In this case, we're talking about Chiron, often associated with health issues. So, naturally, the concern is whether it may indicate problems related to COVID-19. Mercury is tightly conjunct asteroid Hygeia, which brings a need to focus on health-related issues as well. In addition, Mars is conjunct Chiron, just over 5° away from exact (Jul.14).

Mars tends to throw a lit match into whatever pile of tinder it finds, so things can escalate quickly, for better or worse. Although Mars is too wide in orb (9:23) to be directly involved in the T‑square, his conjunction with Chiron means his presence and effects will still be felt, particularly through Chiron themes – health, healing, chronic struggles, human fallibility, and teaching what you need to learn.

One possibility this suggests is that COVID numbers could surge again in July, especially with Mars stoking the Chiron-in-Aries fire and amplified by the lunar eclipse. We might see the beginning of a rise around the lunar eclipse which increases over the following week-and-a-half, as the Mars-Chiron conjunction becomes exact.

Astrologically, this T‑square could (worst case scenario) grease the wheels on a runaway COVID train. For example, both Canada and the US have national anniversaries in early July, and any public celebrations where precautions are not taken (mask wearing, hand washing, social distancing) could result in an abrupt rise in COVID numbers in these places.

Sadly, we don't need astrology to know this is a possibility. Case numbers in the US continue to skyrocket, and given recent numbers there are dire predictions of up to 100,000 new cases daily, although thankfully the death rate is currently slowing. Even here in Canada where the number of daily new cases have greatly decreased, more and more cities and regions are implementing mandatory mask laws in cautious anticipation of a possible "second wave" as we begin to open up public venues again.

The smallest act of kindness is worth more
than the greatest intention.
~ Kahlil Gibran, The Essential Kahlil Gibran

Mars has been a prominent player in all three eclipses, so it's not surprising if this feels like an unusually intense eclipse season. For the Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius (Jun.05), he was in Pisces and exactly square the Sun and Moon (90°), forming the apex of a T‑square pattern along with Neptune. At the Solar Eclipse in Cancer (Jun.21), Mars was still in Pisces and conjunct Neptune, and again square to the Sun and Moon. This time, the Lunar Eclipse is in authoritative Capricorn, and Mars and Chiron—both in forceful Aries—are T‑squaring the Sun-Moon opposition. Mars currently only squares the eclipse point vicariously through Chiron, and later directly squares it on Jul.22.

On one hand, this might aggravate the resistance, rebellion and defiance of people who see only arbitrary restriction and oppression in the efforts of authorities trying their best to avoid an even worse health disaster. On the other hand, Mars is a motivator, providing an opportunity to find new ways to assert your independence and rediscover your self-confidence and courage. That means different things to different people, so we will likely see a wide range of how people feel moved to express these qualities, from open rebellion against what seems unjust, to doing brave things to help others stay safe and hopeful. Mars is a powerful tool, but is most effective when used with cultivated skill, good judgment, and a bit of detached objectivity to balance out the passion.

Mars typically reactivates the eclipse energy when he finally squares the eclipse points exactly. Tension and emotions have continued at a high pitch throughout this eclipse season. Mars in Aries, in general, is likely to sustain or even further intensify that pitch, and it's important that how we express and use Mars energy not get completely out of control.

So, it's good to be forewarned that we will have 6 months of Mars in Aries! – from Jun.27 to Jan.06.2021. This unusually long time is due to Mars going retrograde from Sep.09 to Nov.13 (15-28° of Aries). What effects, if any, might this have on the pandemic?

Graph of Mars with COVID-19
Graph showing Mars conjunct Capricorn planets and the rise of global COVID-19 cases.

Mars has been an important astrological factor in the initial rise of COVID-19. The rapid escalation of worldwide cases began in February, as Mars entered Capricorn (Feb.16), then conjoined the South Lunar Node (Feb.25), then Jupiter (Mar.20), then Pluto (Mar.23) and finally Saturn (Mar.31). During that time, the number of daily confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide skyrocketed dramatically before beginning to level off somewhat until late May.

Mars is now spending 600 years or so in Aries – could this create a resurgence of the coronavirus? Sadly, that's one possibility. On one hand, Mars was in Earth sign Capricorn in February and March, and Earth signs do tend to manifest in a more concrete way than with other elements. Mars is also very strong in Capricorn (the sign of its exaltation), which increased likelihood that the COVID effect would become concrete and enduring in its manifestation—for better or worse.

If the system is the problem, the truth is that there will not be
satisfactory answers in the here and now for lots of people.
That is one of the (painful) ways you know that the problem is systemic.

Which means that either you build forward no matter what, or you lose. Period.
~ Gar Alperovitz, What Then Must We Do?: Straight Talk about the Next American Revolution

Mars is now in Fire sign Aries for the rest of this year. The energy is likely to be more erratic, more impulsive, reactive and unconstrained. The results could be less predictable than in Capricorn, and possibly also be shorter-lived. Longevity and endurance require substance for the Aries Fire to burn, like Earth. On the other hand, the Big Boys remain in Earthy Capricorn, which might provide enough fuel to keep Mars burning steadily.

Another factor is that both Capricorn and Aries are Cardinal signs, which means their energy seeks intention – it's looking for a purpose, a direction, a goal to fulfill. Mars rules Aries, so it's like a double dose of strong Mars. This is great if you're looking for something to light a fire under your backside to get you moving, but not so great if you need stability, reliability and calm maturity.

Mars will be squaring those same planets it previously conjoined, from August 2020 through January 2021. (*Note that for the January passes, Mars will be in Taurus, and Jupiter and Saturn will be in Aquarius.)

There are real concerns about a "second wave" of infections, which is a scary thought considering that we now know it affects much more than just the lungs. However, the knowledge we have gained so far (and from past pandemics) points to some hope that taking swift decisive action could minimize its damage and extent.

Another concern points to evidence that the virus is mutating to become even more infectious, although not necessarily more dangerous (fingers crossed, knock wood). There is still so much we don't know about this virus, complicated by the fact that both it and our knowledge are constantly changing. So, Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn seem to warn us that vigilant action and caution are essential if we are to avoid worsening an already bad situation.

On a more personal level, it's possible that Mars taunting the Capricorn heavyweights could bring some setbacks, roadblocks or intensified frustration. For best results, find constructive ways to channel your energy in ways that are more focused, practical, realistic and results-oriented—admittedly not the happiest mode of expression for Mars in Aries, but far more effective than getting stuck in react-mode. Learn ways to plant both feet firmly on the ground, even as you sprint boldly into new ideas, inspiration, enthusiasm and renewed freedom. Keep coming down on the side of practicality, common sense, asking yourself what you really want from the situation and what you need in order to move in that direction.

The combination of Mars and Chiron in Aries could also shine some pale moonlight on chronic issues that carry no easy answers and may be painful or arduous to resolve. For example, you might experience a struggle with self-confidence and courage, or how to get yourself moving when you're feeling lost. It may be a good time to look more closely at the ways you sabotage your own efforts and capability, like with pessimism, over-reaction, getting stuck in anger and resentment, or working so long and hard that you burn yourself out. On the other hand, remember to give yourself credit for the times when you've resisted the urge to succumb to procrastination, fear, hopelessness, discouragement or cynicism. Recognizing what you've done that works is just as important in the healing process as changing what you do.

On a collective level, Chiron represents deeply rooted problems like systemic racism and persistent injustice, and paired with Mars could bring a focus to violence and the role of the police. There are deep psychic wounds that become embedded in generation after generation of people subjected to oppression, fear, interference, marginalization and injustice. In the US, the list of black people assaulted or killed by police just in recent years is a mile long. Indigenous people are also targeted, being arrested, shot or assaulted by police here in Canada at an alarming rate. Trans women and men and other non-cisgendered people are also victims of disproportionate violence and arrests. People in mental illness crisis tend to be assigned to the police rather than mental health professionals, too often with disastrous consequences. The homeless too are subjected to harassment, assault and murder.

These are just a few examples of chronic problems that persist throughout society, which we are collectively struggling to resolve and which could become visible under the Mars-Chiron T-square with the lunar eclipse in Capricorn. This planetary combination may also aggravate chronic pessimism, cynicism, hopelessness and depression (collectively or individually), all of which are expressions of suppressed, oppressed or unresolved Mars energy. This is anger turned inward.

The way out of a repressed Mars through an expressed Mars. Taking action and doing what you can, even when you don't think it will change much. Acknowledging how you really feel – anger, fear, outrage, disagreement, grief, sadness – and find constructive ways to express it. Whether that's pounding a pillow or protesting in the streets, writing in your journal or writing your political leaders – when you're emotionally frozen or numb, sometimes the best thing you can do is something rather than nothing. The hitch is to do it in a way that doesn't create more problems than it solves – constructive not destructive, assertive not aggressive, decisive not desperate.

Someone once said that pessimism is a tool of white oppression. And I think that's true.
I think in many ways, we are still slaves to the notion that it will never get better.
But I think that there is hope, and I think that it's important that
we celebrate Black joy and Black life, and we remember that
change is possible, change is probable, and that there's hope.
~ Isidore Dharma Douglass Skinner, 15 years old;
the great great great great grandchild of Frederick Douglass
(from video: Descendants Read Frederick Douglass' Speech)

Capricorn is about systems. Systems are organized structures assembled from components that fit together as seamlessly as possible to form a greater whole. Each part has its role to play and serves the greater purpose and function. A working system needs to be enduring and self-sustaining as much as possible, requiring minimal intervention to keep it running.

The whole point is to create something from which something more can be created in turn. So, it's pretty pointless if you have to keep going back to the drawing board to fix a system that keeps breaking down or doesn't produce the required results. And when that happens regularly or persistently, it's time to figure out what to do – tear it down and redesign and build a new system from scratch, or replace the components that have worn out and are causing problems throughout the entire system.

On a global collective level, we are witnessing increasing levels of conflict, contradiction and controversy in many sub-systems, including law enforcement, social justice, health care, support for vulnerable members of society (e.g. elders and the disabled), the role of mass media, political purpose and governmental effectiveness. These are huge sub-systems with their own internal dynamics and disputes. And each of these sub-systems impacts others in ways that are complex, intricate and increasingly problematic.

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It seems humanity is tasked with examining numerous social and societal systems to assess how they are affecting the greater cultural, national, political and global systems. And when problems pop up repeatedly in the greater system, job number one is to diagnose the core problem so that by fixing that, the benefits will ripple out and make it easier to repair and improve problems in other areas. The problem is that it may not be just one sub-system that's broken, and until you can address each of the core issues, it can seem like you're just fighting a bunch of small fires while the whole forest is ablaze.

This is a very long-term process (600 transpersonal planets in Capricorn), and yet, progress is often made sporadically and dramatically (moving into Aquarius). It's not unusual for things to seem worse before they get better, and is often an essential phase in the transformative evolution. That's because in order to fix an ongoing problem, you first have to identify it and zoom in on a closer view in order to redirect it or change it. As the problem's dynamics become clearer and more understood, it looks like they've grown worse, but it's mostly that you're seeing it up close and more distinctly – something that's been there the whole time operating in the background.

On a personal level, we also carry systems inside of us that are composed of expectations, boundaries, assumptions, activities, priorities, and ways that we maintain stability and/or resilience in our lives. Some of this is on the inside (drives, attitudes, beliefs, principles, needs, self-image), and some of it is on the outside (daily routines, family, friends, authority figures, work, groups, goals, and alliances). The lunar eclipse in Capricorn, with its T‑square to Mars and Chiron, can be a time to examine the inner and outer systems in your own life to see how effective they are and whether they're effectively providing what you need from them.

If not, this can be a time to assess how much the problem is disrupting your life and well-being, or whether there is another deeper issue that is pushing it from below. If it's a serious problem for you, you might need to rethink your involvement with that sub-system in your life. It might help to redirect some of your energy in a different way, or it may require a more sweeping change a whole new direction. In order to find out, you'll need to examine, analyze and assess what's working, what's not working, and what is missing that could improve the situation.

Alternatively, this is also a time to take stock of the challenges you have made progress with, weaknesses you've strengthened, struggles you have survived, and skills you've developed that have improved your life and well-being. Perhaps you have conquered past problems but still hesitate to trust or believe in your success. What do you need in order to give yourself the credit you're due?

This lunar eclipse in Capricorn is an opportunity to take the good stuff and patiently allow it to "set" and solidify. And it's a chance to dismantle the not-so-good stuff to determine what's not working, so that you can heal what is broken.

Whatever you do, please do it safely – for yourself and for others. Stay awesome. :-)

Ready? It doesn’t matter. The world is changed by people who aren’t ready.
~ Richie Norton

Day to Day Transits for the Next 2 Weeks

Jul.08 – Mercury Retrograde square Mars (06:06 of Cancer/Aries)

Fiery speech, argument, hot debate and impatience characterise this transit. You may encounter conflicts of interest and want to solve them NOW. And in your haste to find a quick fix, you could wind up creating more problems than you solve. You might also feel like you have hit an impasse or roadblock in a problem that began since Mercury entered the shadow. What you thought was a solution or agreement might now show itself to be unworkable or needing adjustment. Getting angry or frustrated is likely to just aggravate the situation, so it might be wise to vent these feelings well away from the actual situation or people that are triggering them. Your mind may see what needs to be said, but you could wind up blurting it out before you've had a chance to choose your words more carefully. Figure out what you really want, and when you feel a bit calmer and more grounded, THEN have your say. On the other hand, this could also be a time when you find the courage to speak up or assert yourself in situations where you have been overly inhibited before now. Don't become so calm that you lose your edge, but do use good judgment when choosing when and how to act. Use this energy to stoke your motivational fires and use your ideas to generate action (not reaction). Pace and harness the energy like a race horse. This is a time to "do your homework" and find new solutions to existing problems.

Jul.10 – Venus sextile Chiron (09:26 of Gemini/Aries)  (Jul.11 in AU)

Although this transit lasts for only a few days, it is possible to make some progress in your healing and rebalancing efforts, although it will take some effort to make it happen. This may show itself in relationships, social interaction, finances, values, health or your spiritual connection to the Universe. You have an increased ability to negotiate with others and with your circumstances to achieve a fair compromise that results in equal sacrifice and benefit for all concerned. However, there is a risk of wanting to avoid conflict and discord so much that you negotiate beyond what you are truly comfortable with – peace at any price. By accepting and embracing the effort or struggle that is required, you can get out of your own way and achieve a more healing balance in those struggles. You now have increased ability to facilitate changes in situations that are within your control. It can also be easier to accept and adapt to that which lies beyond your control. Your effect on others can be potentially healing right now, especially by helping them find a new balance and point of acceptance in the conflicts and struggles of their lives.

Jul.11 – Chiron Stationary Retrograde (09:26 of Aries; Rx until Dec.15)   (Jul.12 in AU)  ("What's a Station?"  "What does Retrograde mean?"  Read more about Retrograde planets.)

The retrograde station can be felt for up to a week before and after this date. Since Chiron is often about health, you may find health issues coming to the foreground now. General issues about wounding, healing and hurt—physically, psychologically and/or spiritually—may come to a turning point now, making it necessary to take some time for healing, reconstruction, and reconciliation of the energies that are out of balance in your life. The retrograde station (now) begins this process, which gradually unfolds over the next 5 months. Focus your energies on acknowledging the areas that need healing in your life—literally or figuratively. Don't forget that although there are areas that still need healing, you have made progress on much of this in the past. It's important to balance your acknowledgement of the work yet to be done with recognition of what you have already achieved in the past.

Jul.12 – Mercury Stationary Direct (05:29 of Cancer; Direct until Oct.13)  (Jul.11 in HAST)  ("What's a Station?"  "What does Retrograde mean?"  Read more about Mercury Retrograde.  Read more about Retrograde planets.)

Mercury finally turns direct! Yippeeee!!!! ;-) But we're not out of the woods just yet. For up to a week before and after today, you may experience mental intensity, confusion, and miscommunications or simply changes in your outlook. After being Retrograde for the last 3 to 3½ weeks, Mercury is now taking a slow turn to resume Direct motion. This period has challenged you to rethink and rehash things that required some fine-tuning or revision. The Direct station can be a time when clearer decisions start to emerge from the issues and struggles you've encountered during the retrograde period. Or, it might turn your perspective around so that you're seeing your situation fresh again.

Over the next couple of weeks, while Mercury is still in the Shadow, your brain may feel a bit like it's gradually waking up after a deep sleep. During this time, you can gradually put into practice the learning and knowledge you've gained from your retrograde "dreams" and moonlight visions. It will take time to get fully back into sync with the Mercury direct energy. So, take it slow, one step at a time, and untangle yourself one strand at a time.

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


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Jul.12 – Sun trine Neptune (20:51 of Cancer/Pisces)  (Jul.13 in AU)

Faith in the bountiful blessings of the Universe is within reach under this transit...but then, so is the fantasy that you will be magically granted anything you wish for. Hope, optimism and imagination spring eternal right now, which can bring some relief from any depression or discouragement you might be feeling. Your creativity can become very inspired under this transit. Your sense of self could also get an infusion of uplifting vision. And you experience a sense of mission, feeling that you are truly a Child of the Universe. There is potential to lift you out of the ordinary and into the sublime – spiritually, creatively, romantically or compassionately. Enjoy it while it lasts, but before you make changes based on what might feel like a permanent condition, remember that this is mostly a temporary influence and you will still have to live within the bounds of the physical world after it passes. Don't make overly optimistic promises now, that you will have to fulfil later when the euphoria wears off.

Jul.14 – Sun opposite Jupiter (22:20 of Cancer/Capricorn)  (Jul.13 in HAST, AKDT)

Your confidence and ambitions may become amplified, possibly to the point of becoming a problem under this transit. It may be difficult to judge how much is too much versus just enough, and it could just be easier want more and more..."just in case." You may feel the urge to travel or do something that could expand your horizons (literally or figuratively). However, satisfaction may seem just out of reach under this transit, so there is a risk of pushing too hard and lacking perspective or good judgment. You could find that tolerance, compassion and understanding are hard to find, either in you toward others or in others toward you (or both). You are seeing things through a mental magnifying lens, which may be distorting your perceptions or reactions. On the other hand, this can be a good time to take an honest look at how closely you are living by your integrity and values. Feedback might come from others who could be seeing something more clearly than you can see it in yourself. Or, you might find that a minor irritation about someone or something outside of yourself suddenly becomes a major problem. This is probably because you're seeing it more clearly (although not necessarily more accurately). The lesson of this transit is that everything gets amplified together – the positive and the negative, and at a certain point the difference between them may become meaningless. Reaching a balanced understanding of all that lies within that expanded view is the key to gaining wisdom from the experience.

Jul.14 – Mars conjunct Chiron (09:26 of Aries)  (Jul.13 in HAST)

There is a lot of potential for both healing and harm under this transit. The forcefulness of Mars is like a surgeon's scalpel that can heal by cutting through resistance, lethargy, pain or denial – but could also be a knife that causes damage when not used with precision and care. The healing aspect of this energy can bring some relief to chronic or persistent problems, but if inflicted with anger, hostility or insensitivity it could just aggravate those problems. Physical energy could be affected by this transit, either beginning a new approach that can bring improved strength, or by depleting your energy through physical, emotional or spiritual malaise. You might feel a bit discouraged or powerless...or you might start to see a light at the end of the tunnel that you can start to move toward. This is the beginning of a new cycle of working with these combined energies, which lasts about 2 years. To participate with positive intention in this initiation, it can help to observe what conflicts, problems or struggles come up around this time, since there is something about these issues that will unfold and develop over the next two years.

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Jul.15 – Sun opposite Pluto (23:44 of Cancer/Capricorn)  (Jul.16 in AU)

Who owns the power? This is a time when you may be called upon to stand up to a situation or person who pressures you to dance to their tune instead of your own. This is a chance to assert and empower yourself in new ways, putting into practice the inner strength you've developed in the last 6 months. The trick is to face the situation or person while rooted in inner honesty and authenticity, rather than trying to annihilate the enemy using overkill. Strive to negotiate (or struggle) together using just enough force to establish a workable balance of power, without either of you being nuked in the process. Also, be open to the possibility that your "opponent" might be holding up a mirror, which is showing you something about yourself that you may not want to acknowledge. That doesn't necessarily make your opponent right and you wrong, but there might be something for you to learn from the situation. If you are in a situation that doesn't involve an "opponent" as such, there may still be an aspect of your environment that is holding up a difficult mirror, requiring you to find a more centred and authentic point of inner power. It is by finding new balance within this kind of dynamic, whatever the circumstances, that transformation can be found.

Jul.18 – Moon goes Out of Bounds (29:02 Gemini to 24:27 Cancer; OOB until Jul.20)  (_ in AU)   ("What does Out of Bounds mean?"   "What is Declination?")

The Moon goes Out of Bounds (OOB) by Declination, during which time your feelings and emotions may be a bit stronger than usual. You might feel a little separated from the world around you, and as a result you might feel a bit lonely or in need of some reassuring human contact. On the other hand, this detachment might be a welcome change if you're feeling a bit stressed or overwhelmed by the energy around you and need some time out. Or, you may find it's time to go your own way a bit more, to seek your own company or search for a more supportive environment. Your creativity and imagination might be more willing to follow unusual ideas, whims and impulses.

A planet goes OOB when its declination is greater than 23:26 (23 degrees and 26 minutes), which is the maximum declination of the Sun, and the Sun defines the Bounds. In 2020, the Moon's maximum declination finally goes beyond the Bounds in March, for the first time since 2011, and will continue to go OOB until January 2030.

For now, the Moon's maximum declination increases very gradually each month, and only gets to 24:52 by December 2020 (compared to her maximum declination of 28:34, which she'll reach in 2025). So, in 2020 the Moon is only a little OOB and this energy might not be very noticeable until around September. On the other hand, the OOB periods can be a time when your emotional reactions may be somewhat more amplified than usual. In any case, if you have the Moon or other planets OOB in your natal chart, you might be more sensitive to this energy.

Available by January 28, 2021.

© 2020 Wendy Guy. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or used without the author's written permission. Astrology diagrams © Wendy Guy unless otherwise noted. OTHER CREDITS: Most or all of the quotes on this page were found at Illustration of Zodiac Sign by Natalia Hubbert, via Sabian Symbol image: bas-relief with gods Bêl, Ba'alshâmin, Yarhibôl et Aglibôl - photograph by Rama, Wikimedia Commons, Cc-by-sa-2.0-fr / CC BY-SA 2.0 FR

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