The tunnels of the Temple Of Confusion flush with emotional fluid, swell with romantic waters, cascade in intuitive significance, like a great skull floating through an eternal sea, the liquid filtering through its salt softened sinus passages whispering a narrative into a dreamers ear, dreaming they are awake, going about their business as usual but much further and wider and vaster and deeper than normal, the periphery of their perception scrolls back to reveal more of the world until they are enveloped in ebb and flow of a meaning and feeling drenched world. Thoughts are like krill, tiny crustaceans and free floating bits of aquatic flora picked by the surging waters and carried off into the ambient motion. Notions are many, yet dispersed, disparate, and widely distributed. They might cling to a passing hull, shuffle into the baleen of whales, link up together in odd formations, collections of thoughts that congeal amass and pretend to have continuity. They have begun to find each other, summoned by a silent sound muffled by the sentimental sea. What was once a tangled lump embraces a chain of feathery fuzz which links onto a length of shell and ropey weed to create somehow a lithe limb; knee, shin, ankle— it finds a hip and collides with a torso, soon digits, knuckles, neck and head collect until a whole body coalesces into form, animated by the waves, it seeks the surface, and whole again swims toward the shore. This is more than continuity and direction than was previously available, but still this being is subject to waves and tides and weather, and must struggle if it wishes to reach solid ground. Plus the shore is elusive, and presents problems of its own: cliffs, reefs, rocks and rough surf. Still, now there is a body, and a mind, and together they strive to take leave of illusion.
From high above this person glimmers as a jewel in the clear water, an identity warmed by the sun, summoned to the surface, skin warmed by the rays of light which define them and beckon them to action, asking them to do what they will and to show what they are capable of. They realize there are other swimmers, and when they come into proximity they banter and volley in lively fashion, quickly becoming argumentative, they debate solutions such as building a raft of the flotsam and jetsam they pass, but amongst them there is no agreement, only opposing opinions. Despite this intellectual tension, they reach out for each other in the night, and in the throes of foam and saline splash they pursue their unbridled desires, knowing only the beauty of existence which comes from everywhere and no where at once. Any cold construct they may have had before this time must be released, or else like an anchor it would quickly drag them down to the bottom and crush them beneath its leaden bulk. They are with the whims of winds and the movement of the water and the fire from within, and when they look to the lands which circle them all around upon the ring of horizon they see it tremble, then vibrate, then lurch up and change. Trees divide and dance into new forms, landing on all fours sculpted into alternate shapes upon which vines sprout and tendril down to the open earth where gourds grow like fruiting fungus. Cliffs collapse and carry with their weight crystal cores upturned to the sky and cleaved by the fall fissure into impossible arrays, symmetrical relays that traffic light and restore lost moments, managing our memories and singing back to us songs our ancestors had forgotten; things we thought not possible occur beyond the shores, the swimmers seek, returning after the long dream to not only a reality changed, but one that is changing and transforming all the time. Perhaps their time dissolved into plankton and krill and sand and seaweed scraps will ready them for a world unfixed and give them new instincts with which to live in the intersection of before and after, of yesterday and tomorrow.
Mars In Gemini
April opens with Mars on the first degree of Gemini, which brings a noticeable shift into yang modality compared to the past two months dominated by earth and water signs. I compared the time we have just traversed before it came as a period of manipulating clay at the potters wheel in the best case scenario and trudging endlessly through sinking muck in the worst. With the Sun now in Aquarius and Mars in Gemini things speed up and dry out quite a bit. In Taurus Mars is slow yet methodical, the tactics are those of craft, repeated gestures in a repetitive groove that slowly sculpt our reality around us in a hands on way. This is frustrating for impulsive mars who wishes to cleave things instantly in half rather than slowly sand them smooth with grit and paper. Mars gets to speed up considerably in Gemini but in a rather unfocused way; realizing he is suddenly off leash he darts this way and that, rushing into whatever action catches his fancy but easily becoming distracted and scurrying away after other curious glints and glimmers that beckon attention. Gemini is a social sign, and so Mars here puts his confrontational and competitive capabilities towards debating this topic or that, but might shift views quickly and argue for opinions that he doesn’t even believe in, just to exercise the brain. Where Mercury’s earth sign Virgo is like the report on findings from many detailed science experiments done in the field, Gemini instead is like a newspaper; many enticing one liners accompanied by a couple brief paragraphs covering a wide variety of topics. We all know that the news can make us nervous and neurotic, and for fiery and fidgety Mars who needs to channel the energy that builds up into outlets or else he lashes out, finding focus within the very energetic and excessively quick mental terrain becomes incredibly important. He gains some footing in the second decan where he has dignity by Face, exhibiting selective cleverness, but this time around he squares Neptune from there on the 27th, adding illusive solutions via phony articles and misunderstood information; as you’re trying to keep focused on doing what is most important and effective make sure to double check that the article you clipped and pinned to your cork-board isn’t actually from the Onion.
Venus In Pisces
A planet we are quite happy to have moved into the water is Venus, as she finds her exaltation in the sign of Pisces, amplified this year by Pisces’ ruler Jupiter being dignified in rulership in his own domicile of Sagittarius. Venus presides over attraction, desire, pleasure, beauty, luxury and romance. She is what ables us to form bonds with that which we are attracted to and come to love whether it is a place, person, painting or poem. In this way she also rules over art and creative expression. In Pisces she is able to love without bound, to experience pleasure without limit, to express herself creatively in a freeform and flowing manner. When Venus is in Pisces everything is beautiful, you love everyone, and anything can be art. Interpretive dance, ambient music, expressionist painting, improve theatre, and universalist aesthetics typify Venus’ functions in the fishes sign, as does free love, polyamory and non-monogamy. With Neptune midway through this can certainly be laced with the psychedelic edge which commonly accompanies these modalities and dynamics. This is a time to engage with your fantasies in an expressive as well as receptive manner, to bring your dreams to life in your aesthetics, to allow yourself to love and to luxuriate in an unbridled act, to go with the flow, to indulge, to let loose; but with all Piscean as well as especially Neptunian contacts, take from these experiences learning, knowledge, understanding, skill, awareness and satisfaction but be careful to not over-identify with that which might be more at home in dreams and get swept up and away into illusions, as imagination reigns here and should be put to noble as well as delicious purpose but not deleteriously misunderstood.
Mercury Direct and Ingress into Aries
Mercury turned direct on March 28th, but takes another nearly three weeks to exit the shadow of his retrograde and enter Aries, where he also escapes his very debilitated status in Pisces. He stationed direct upon Neptune as we were attempting to get our ideas in order and communicate amidst the heights of confusion, our thoughts and emotions hopelessly blended, but the Messenger managed to right himself and make for solid turf, hopefully coming back from the hallucinatory depths with retrieved pearls and keys to future doors. With these keys and jewels in hand he hops atop the fiery Ram of Aries April 17th after a long and arduous nighttime navigation un-losing himself at sea. Once mounted upon Mars’ vehicle (with Mars deep in his own domicile and sextile by sign) Mercury begins to fire off impulsive thoughts and rapid rounds of speech. This suddenly clear head itchy to pull the trigger on so many ideas which can finally be kindled might become quickly accustomed to talking before thinking, speaking about ourselves, rash logic, devising sudden strategies, rushing through analysis, saying “ok, got it lets go!” before things have been completely explained, or initiating debates you can’t win. This very closely mirrors what Mars might get himself into in Gemini, so there is much potential to sway this way. This might sound irritating, but it will be guided for the most part by being copresent with the Sun in Aries who is exalted there, and displays confidence and capability, being the initiator of spring and new action, this is the planet that “shows you how its done”, and can help eke out the potential for original opinions, new ideas, fresh language, and the positive side of ‘thinking for oneself’.
Sun in Aries
It is the Sun’s ingress into Aries that marks the vernal equinox and begins the season of spring when the length of light and darkness equalize and then the day begins to grow from thence forth. In 2019 this occurred on March 20th, so by April the Sun has already reached the second decan where he has dignity by face in both systems of attribution as well as containing the highest degree of his exaltation at 19 degrees. As previously stated, the Sun here radiates and resonates character and charisma not by being simply himself and carrying natural regality but by showing what he is capable of as an individual through his deeds and actions, the “check this out, I’ll show you how its done.” attitude. The Sun is both the universal experience of everything ‘under the sun” or within the “kingdom” as well as the sense of centrality and identity within that light; it is our vision, what we see to be true and clear, and thus how we are oriented and from which footing we establish our identities. In Aries we ‘see’ what to do and what must be done and don’t hesitate to take the clear tactical steps to proceed. When it becomes spring the world thaws and there is no ambiguity about what is happening; animal and vegetal instincts kick in as the world wakes up, and like the race initiated by the starter pistol, living things get moving to seek light and food and life. The Sun is also vitalizing, delivering necessary vitamin D directly to our skin, and so the Sun’s time in Aries breathes warmth and life into our bodies as we get our blood pumping, clean our our dens, burn off our ills and air out our furs and linens. This much needed “knowing what to do”, especially from a higher or more noble, central, collective or archetypal mind is much needed after a long sweep of emotional and personal submersion; we awake energized after a lengthy night of delirious sleep, and hopefully with intent not to forget what we dreamt but to hold it as guidance to inform our daytime actions as we move forward toward that which we strive.
Saturn Conjunct The South Node
Sober, serious and stern Saturn moves onto the degree shared by the South Node over the course of the month, accomplishing conjunction by the 30th. Together they form a formidable force, only amplified by their proximity to Pluto only a few degrees away. Saturn rules over obligations, restrictions, limits, structures, skeletons, mortality, history, foundations, systems, management, laws, discipline, pessimism, endurance, durability, hardness, dryness, stability and inescapability. The South Node, who is called Ketu in the Indian traditions is not a physical body, but a potential shadow, the point at which eclipses can occur. He is ascetical, disgusted with the stuff and excess of manifestation, has had enough and only wishes to purge and rid himself of all of this mess and become spiritually purified; so his action is one of becoming cold to the topics he touches, making you just not care about certain things anymore so you can be rid of or release them, guiding you to reduce belongings and attachments to old ideas, desires, constructs, safeties, both physical and non. At times he has us taking our old clothes to the thrift store and others he steals things we were holding right out of our grasp depending on the severity of the configuration. This configuration is about as severe as you can get, although it may not be active here as it is not an eclipse season, it might be here that situations begin to be sewn together that are pulled into inescapable tension by June and July. This is especially true as the Sun comes to the bends of the nodal axis while simultaneously squaring Saturn between the 10th and 12th. As actions that express our identities come clash against what the management of the tangible system of obligations demands we may glimpse something in the crosshairs that could get clipped come the eclipse on July 16th. Saturn’s absolutely non-negotiable nature paired with the South Node’s focus on tossing things irreversibly into the fire spells out a situation where things we are reluctant to let go of are ordered out of our hands. This may not be as depressing or disruptive for everyone as it is for some. Many might experience this as a time that ghosts who have long haunted are finally exorcised and corpses that have been stacking up can finally be cremated and the souls attached to them may at last proceed into heavenly peace. For others, its drop the cargo and swim to safety or keep clutching the treasure chest and sink to your doom; although Saturn and Ketu assure you’ll do the latter when faced with the Reaper’s scythe (he/she’s always worse than you imagined and you’re sure to turn tail, or if nothing else realize in the quick that the contents of the chest can’t be ported through the passage, in which case you release them in an enlightened lesson). If you can identify what story is playing out in this particular eclipse narrative for you personally you will likely be able to sit with it more maturely, and save yourself some dark surprises later in the season. What needs to be nurtured, coddled, fed and protected, carefully nursed and raised to maturity in your life and what needs to be pruned back, dismantled, cleared away for this particular newborn to thrive.
Uranus in Taurus
Much has been said about Uranus in Taurus and what it might hold for us and the world, and you may reference some writing about this topic here, but this month the Sun conjoins the Promethean planet soon after his entrance into Taurus on April 22nd, at which point we’ll put on our labcoats and get to tour the experiments ourselves, on the other side of the blast wall, getting to see for ourselves just how volatile this thing is and what kind of potentials the planet of disruption, change, radicalization and revolution holds for the organic world, its rhythms, materials and the stability of wealth they bring us. Hold on to your hats and get ready to shuffle the parameters and work with ‘stuff’ in a state of flux.
Monday April 1st to Sunday April 7th
-Monday April 1st : Moon waning in Pisces conjunct Venus after Fomalhaut
-Tuesday April 2nd: -6am: mercury separating from Neptune
-Wednesday April 3rd: -11pm: Venus ingress Pisces 2:
-Friday April 5th: 4:45am: New Moon at 15*17’ Aries
-Sunday April 7th -2am: Mercury ingress Pisces 3
-5am: Mercury sextile Saturn
The month begins on a Monday, considered by many to be the start of the week with the Moon waning in Pisces conjoining Venus just after passing over Fomalhaut. April opens with feelings and intuitions of free art, romance and mystical poetry potential, although the Moon here is waning and the nights are dark with only a shrinking sliver so you may have to search inside or beyond the curtain to receive these notions from a reflective state, as if in seance, listen and hear the voices dictate you poetry from the beyond and allow your hands to move guided by this spectral force, which is in part your own deep desires and drives for pleasure which well up from within. The Moon square Mars and sextile Uranus here, so the above dynamic clashes with an energetic yet argumentative lack of focus and mental excess but can work hand in hand with the current radicalization of pace and rhythm of the material world; our poetry, art, lusts, luxuries and pleasures can excel from partaking in the sensory experimentation.
Tuesday morning by 6am Mercury begins separating from conjunction with Neptune and slowly starts to distance fact from fantasy. This is a long and convoluted process in which we take what we learned from the emotional high seas of the past couple months and allow it to be one long journeying experience that contains valuable insights while also remembering to not hold on too tightly to distortions and impressions in a literal way which only serves to make the picture murky. When we watch a movie that is not too well done and proceeds with an “and then, and then, and then, and then…” type narrative it occurs to us that life is much more non-linear than we might like to make it with our calendars, clocks, schedules and alarms. Yes, time can be tracked and traced, but our experience is a sine wave that oscillates in a wide berth of novelty as the hands tick away. In this sense we at times live out myths and metaphors that will never fit neatly into any rational explanation, synchronicities that defy materialist definition. The past two months was soaked in this type of significance admixture, and you will only transfer it into categorizations at the cost of it all slipping through your fingers. There were certainly a few solid things floating throughout, and we likely clung to them, but which were which can only be ascertained as we get some distance. Write it all down and reread it as the time passes.
On Wednesday Venus progresses into the second decan of Pisces, given to Jupiter in one system and the Moon in the other, which is a little bit more comfortable for her than the first decan, which some say belongs to Saturn. This place is more inclined to being purely free and mystical than the previous ten degrees; where Pisces 1 sees boundaries and believes in going beyond them Pisces 2 knows no boundaries at all and is more purely concerned with expansiveness. Pisces 1 might say “there’s more than that, allow yourself to go beyond this limit”, where Pisces 2 would ignore the limit completely and focus totally on being in the feeling of universal flow.
On Friday the 5th we receive a New Moon in Aries at 15*17’, an inception of a manifestation cycle seeding in vision of actions, in proving oneself, in announcing the gestation of the noble self by confidently acting it out, by in “coming out” as it were. This is the first New Moon since the Aries ingress, so the first lunar seed planting in this annual astrological cycle from vernal equinox to vernal equinox. What are the kinds of things the new you does? What first steps do we make into this fresh and updated version of ourselves? What is the opening move in this years game? It’s a fresh start, what course do we take? What would be the truest and most honest thing we could do, and what could we do to best display our capabilities? The perennial lesson that doing what we like to do the most and what we are the best at doing is where we might find our most success.
Early on Sunday Mercury both enters the third decan of Pisces and squares Saturn. Here Mercury is both susceptible to and expert at telling tall tales, being the kind of story teller that envelops the audience in an imaginative alternate world as well as the kind of Mercury who gets thoughts lost in seas of emotions. This Messenger can deliver express of a wide and deep emotional range but rational analyzation becomes awash in emotional high drama, the kind often only reserved for the stage. Shakespeare is loaded with doomed motives, poisoned projects and inflated personae that are larger than anything we normally see in real life, but when Mercury is in this decan there is the potential for balloons to fill with that much water, even though they almost always eventually burst. Interestingly, the above dynamic receives a sextile with stable and enduring Saturn in the third decan of Capricorn, so this Mercury reciting the lines of Romeo and Iago or captivating crowds with accounts of Johnny Apple Seed might find the right form to fill up balloons within where there is enough support as well as weight the apparatus just right so the over all structure is properly managed. Overly dry systems seize and stop being functional, and it requires not only lubrication to keep things rolling but also people who can think big. Echoing previous notions in this weeks forecast; our dreams, journeys and fantasies often have the right information within to quench our rational soldiers and deploy them hydrated and inspired into the physical field. An example might be “I had this weird recurring dream as a kid that I lived in the French countryside with 12 St. Bernards, recently this opportunity came up to sell my house so I did, then moved to Paris to scout it out and while I was there I happened to fall in love with someone who owned a dog breeding business and the rest is history”. Maybe I didn’t do service to what I’m trying to depict, but what we might shoot for is where the dream and the rational, stable steps are starting to match up or at least overlap; where following fantasy and correct procedure are happening simultaneously.