We, at the center of the wheel, our hides pinned onto the place which we stand, witness the spectacle of the spinning vortex of circumpolar stars and the arc of volleying light across the ecliptic, studded by a blazing eye of gold, chased and repeatedly lapped by the morphing pearl of silver. The sphere we inhabit also spins, and so when the planets that we track reach ends of their orbits that make little progress from our perspective they seem to stop, turn around and head the Other Way, A Rebour, Against The Grain. These moments where they slow down to turn in motion, for some days and for others weeks, we find them moving very slow or for a period stationary.
Recently we have had multiple slow motion planets. Jupiter stationed retrograde on March 8th, Mercury turned direct on April 14th and has been since steadily picking up speed, Saturn stationed retrograde on April 17th and has only moved three minutes since, Pluto stationed retrograde on April 21st. When planets are stationed or slow moving the effect is often that we have an abundance of that planets influence, and when that’s turning retrograde it is not necessarily their most clear or straightforward expression. If they are not moving and gaining new territory or forming new aspects then nothing much is changing; this doesn’t mean necessarily that nothing is happening, it means rather that its still happening. If something stays as is for a long period of time then there is plenty of opportunity to observe it in detail, making it seem like a bigger deal. If something changes quickly the new information diverts our attention. If the past weeks have settled into stagnancy you may find yourself performing more bond breaking or road opening rituals to stimulate the ethers and shake sympathies from the shadows. Some planets have recently switched signs; The Sun into Taurus and Venus into Gemini. Solar influences in the inaugural Earth sign place an emphasis on planting seeds and then carefully tending them so we may have our material desires fulfilled in the future. This certainly can add to feelings of lack and slow pace, as Saturn in another Earth sign opposes the Moon each Month when she comes around to rulership. For the most part this is a period of inner change and personal growth that sets us on a new course in the material world, and the empty larders and dusty wallets we find today signal us out of necessity to new methods of manifestation; As Greek Ananke with her spindle is Roman Necessitas, both emanations of Hekate in her Chaldean incarnation; How else does the Goddess of Witchcraft teach magic other than by baiting you to enchant for what you need? You follow her torch by improving your craft. Indeed, she holds in her hands a golden scepter encircled by a formula inscribed by Great Kronos himself, who gave it… in order that all things remain steadfast.” Agriculture as a phenomenon didn’t emerge because it seemed like a fun hobby, and didn’t Woden sacrifice “himself to himself” because he was bored; As bulls in Taurus we graze until the grass is gone and then wander to the next lush patch; when we are called to mate we move toward coupling; the bear sits and eats berries and then wanders to its next meal, even if it is 30 miles away. If you’re spells have yet to bring in cash payoff you might have to enchant your way through a flow chart, or be satisfied with the door prizes that Taurus brings. Nice stuff and things don’t always pay the rent, but if you’ve got that covered, the clothing, furniture, compost and foods that are likely conjured in Taurus may be satisfactory.
Venus’ ingress into Gemini on the other hand has quickened the social and cultural pace; curiosity and information, paradox and speculation, media and ideas all get tickled with Venus’ feather, fed wine and coated in chocolate. The webinar and book menu becomes maybe a bit more digestible; let yourself get a little intoxicated, its fun, just remember to steer clear of absolute junk food. This could have a beneficial effect as going from Aries through Taurus normally is a period of everyone in their own head to everyone carrying their own load down their own path. Some Geminiic pleasure could create a nice social release valve, literally adjusting the air pressure, so ease into elemental balance. As Jupiter retrogrades his way back into the 2nd decan of Scorpio in a slowly separating sextile to Pluto, he may be more likely to award philosophical understanding of your shadow self rather than call up a cue of strangers bearing new opportunities. Venus in an air sign on the other hand can usually turn up the social activity if that might be all you need to get some balls rolling.
Sunday April 29th
In the evening the Moon will reach its fullness in Scorpio, but along the way some aspects to Saturn transpire and drop some leaden weights into the already dramatic lunar juice. This either will splash some of the simmering phlegmatic humors or render the texture of tides cement. Early, at 6am the Sun in Taurus trines Saturn in Capricorn, and our eyes fill with visions of fecundity and fertile preparation in the key of natural law. We might begin to identify with agricultural techniques which heed heavy restrictions, or work with the meagre resources we have to plant bountiful gardens between the cracks in the pavement and behind forgotten walls, using the crumbling cobble to bolster our terraces. The productive and pragmatic preparation possible after delusions and fantasies are finally swept aside. We will never achieve what our younger selves imagined, but we may now create many things our previous personalities hadn’t even thought of.
Just under an hour from the main event, at 7:50pm the Moon sextiles Saturn and revelations of deep churning emotions willing to work hand in hand with local boundaries, territorial infrastructure, the foundations around us, the maze in which we run, and not necessarily in a positive sense, but not in a negative either. It is all a matter of perspective what we make of deep needs and hungers brought on by limits. This can be sublimated and put to good use. This is the need-fire which incepted Woden’s hanging from the Yew. This is what drove us to the brink and glimpse technology, the ability to create strategies and cheat fate, to go about things in another way. We yearn for what we lack and are hungry for in our souls and why we can’t have it now so we can figure out how to get beyond limits and have it in the future or alternately, simply calm our over active or destructive appetites. Which ever path is healthier for you to take, utilize the gnashing to strive toward positive evolution rather than thrashing in the cage.
The Full Moon culminates at 9:pm as the Moon at 9 Scorpio opposes the Sun at 9 Taurus, illuminating passions, obsessions and other emotional lava in the psyche. Christopher Warnock says of the 18th Lunar Mansion Al-Qalb: “We do not want to rouse this energy against us. This Mansion may warn of impending danger. We benefit from its ominous message by acting to put ourselves in protective mode.” “We should be careful not to eat to excess, as we are particularly prone to stomach upset under this Mansion.” Indeed, Insatiably hungry Scorpio in full sight of sensually satisfying Taurus is an excess recipe, so best to take the better percentage of the bezoars back from Scorpio’s claws if you can and return them to Libra’s scales.
Monday April 30th
Still dribbling with colloidal silver syrum for a few days, the Moon has passed the pivot point and begins to roll out once more into the lunar abyss. The next morning at 5am the Sun enters Taurus’ second decan, rallying its light around the creative and fertile principle itself, like a golden shaft of identification rising and falling in penetration of the soil to a slow and methodical rhythm, the pace of slowly growing crops, of gradually unfurling vegetation. What we do and strive for in sync with the cadence and measure of nature’s song; our purpose and passion tethered to the yoke of a cyclical and seasonal ox, promoting a methodical practical approach. Plodding forward toward success in an organic rhythm and pace. In formula that relies on steady, smooth progress we become susceptible to upsets and could become massively irritated with wrenches in the gears and sudden surprises; we may tolerate the odd grain of sand that scratches the lubricated piston and compromises its precision, but having to stop and recalibrate altogether is not fathomable. We are able to be naturally, or even nonchalantly productive, as long as nothing goes so long we are forced to stop or divert our course too extremely, as we are less adaptable or flexible in Taurus season. “If everything goes smoothly we’ll have XY&Z no problem we say. What if it doesn’t go smoothly? We should perhaps revisit Louis Malle’s Phantom India and scrutinize the footage of Jagannath rolling in Madras.
As the morning progresses the still quite full Moon trines Neptune at 8am releasing emotional hungers, churning passions and obsessions flowing together with fantasies, dreams and delusions, or, dark and brooding imaginations which soak our infernal intuitions. Later that afternoon at 3pm Luna conjoins Jupiter, and these strange intuitions swell with the juice of wisdom and philosophic understanding, forming diabolical fruit which droops from the vines of our spleens. The Moon glides on from the gas giant like a rolling pearl as she does, but by 9pm Jupiter achieves the degree which hosts the fixed star Zubeneschamali, which hangs in the balance of both Libra’s scales and the suspense of Scorpio’s claws. Here recognition of leadership, polished professionalism and personal sovereignty or the elevated status of kingship, such as that symbolized by Jupiter’s Eagle, are utilized to affect positive social reform; and despite the storm in our deep waters we may be inspired to use are privileges to aid in a good cause.
Tuesday May 1st
Jupiter’s proximity to Zubeneschamali is interesting as Mercury sidles up to Alpharatz at 8am, where the logic and language of the radical, outspoken journalist takes charge of our faculties and our tongues, sparking possible new thinking to increase self-sufficiency, even leaning into overconfidence. There may be some deep revelations this week leading to discourses and decisions that make our fingers itchy to sign over the line and shove off to where the action is at; we can’t just sit at home and watch the problems on TV, we’ve got to go do something (or at least SAY something) This may be what the Morai have in store for some, the other wise ones will come to understand how their actions and efforts here at home impact the whole.
Wednesday May 2nd
An even more overt approach to a fixed star is enacted by Venus at 2pm, as she strides up to the door of Aldebaran. This is Taurus’ red and flashing eye, and as the Bull is central in the Mithraic Tauroctony, Venus here extends her influence on the arts to that appropriate for “Lord Of Contracts”; sexual or creative reciprocity, to be bound by oath to fulfill a need for arts in society; a duty for society and culture to creatively accept Venusian expressions, and reversely, social commentary through art. Much of todays art does not revolve around the sacred oaths we make, but perhaps this is a good opportunity to remind us of such divine contracts, whether in our creative life, our sexual activity or even in how we approach pleasure in general. As this is Gemini, we must not leave out the potential for high publicity and head-spinning curiosity.
And with that note, Venus enters into Gemini’s second face at 6pm, where explosions of ideas and interests settle on the seesaw or oscillations of opposites, and paradoxes become absolutely apparent. Artful attraction of opposites, paradoxical pleasures and aesthetics, contradictory and also amalgamation, pandrogyne as well as androgyne, trickster beauty, neither-either-both, endlessly combining and opposing simultaneously; night day and twilight, and twilight’s antithesis. Our costumes are pied and our tongues forked, for aesthetic purposes, but we might even like the way we talk and reciting poetry back-masked in double-speak projected in split-screen and skyped from screen to screen so that it echoes and feedsback. For every painting we compose another is lost as we chose to do this one and not the one we could have, as each Tarot card can only show up once in a reading, until the day we pull our signifier again and again and look up to see our doppleganger, like seeing in a mirror, but a mirror reflection of a mirror reflection. Venus is free to get romantic with such Mecurial themes, as she is not utterly out of place, she also rules an air sign, and holds dominion over this decan by triplicity attribution; appropriately enough Mars holding the title by the descending order; yin and yang equally comfortable in the same space.
Thursday May 3rd
Venus’ experience in Gemini is likely to be assisted slightly by Mercury’s exits from shadow at 5pm. Fresh thinking may now commence, and new information may inform our logic, the latest stories and investigations crop up which help us forget about the kinks and adjustments made throughout the retrograde which are finally falling into the past, as we proceed into new analytical territory. In Aries this still means individual actions and impulses sparking and firing off. Daring to say the newly thought things that come to mind and expressing emerging ideas free of past issues and entanglements. Certainly becoming more than a bit ubiquitous, (like the term “meme” which before coopted by general digital culture was being considered by more magically inclined psychologists and physicists to be the rna of the ideaosphere, something more reminiscent of Rupert Sheldrake’s morphic resonance), you might do well to convert your upcoming bright ideas into sigils and slip them into your social media output.
The last couple days of the week from here on find the Moon transiting Capricorn, conjoining Saturn and then heading on toward Pluto and Mars. This is just the Moon, so is not necessarily world news, as this will happen basically every month for the next two years, and she transits past Saturn and Pluto ultimately in other signs perpetually anyway; although, as this is a pretty malefic pile up in a place they are powerful, its worth noting in the forecast that this flavors the tail end of the week. Not the end of the world, certainly (we hope anyway), but probably draining of energy and prone to discomfort, at least as far as health and emotions go. Interesting as Saturn is about time, definition, the skeleton beneath it all, and in his earthly domicile we are forced to note every time the Moon brushes past him: for here he is the least abstract, he is an object, and with the skeleton hands of a great clock he caresses and grasps us each month, and checks our vitals. A very creepy thought, but if we are to be ready to get dismissed by the Doctor and not be strapped down to a bed in intensive care, we’ve got to give ourselves extra support and rest to stay on our feet as needed and maintain a marathon pace. Here he plays his role acutely: confirm or deny; and through this he matures us, makes us stronger, better, more enduring. Rather than mother us and give us what we need he blows the whistle and drops the gate, saying, “nope, too tired, too sluggish, you’re out of the game”, until we learn to adjust our strategy and pass his test. Then he simply nods and drops his eyes to his clipboard as we walk on.