Here's some of the important astrological news this month ...
Full Moon at 10Pi28, 9-2
Mars enters Capricorn, 9-8
New Moon at 24Vi36, 9-17
Juno enters Leo, 9-17
Jupiter quincunx Pluto, 9-19
Saturn Retrograde Station at 14Gm58, 9-26
An online ephemeris for the month is available.
September feels like a sleeping giant waking up. The month has a number of powerful patterns that are active, creating a couple of potent planetary storms. Fortunately, the energies present now are more constructive than we've seen in quite some time, making it much easier to get things done or just plain cope. The full moon on the 2nd is an amazing chart, signifying a complex set of influences that will be batting us around the next two weeks. The last few days of the month, a major storm quickly blooms, leading into an impressive wave of activity in early October -- that's the giant getting out of bed. Get moving!
For all this action, there's surprisingly little going on in conventional astrological terms during September. We have one big aspect, one retrograde station and a pair of planets changing zodiac signs. It's just that the outer planets are in a tight configuration which the inner planets are more than happy to kick into overdrive. We'll be seeing this effect often the next two months.
The full moon is a spectacular chart, the first rumblings of our "giant" pattern. Most of the activity is centered around 10 degrees in a huge double fan-shaped configuration. First of all, the Sun and Moon form a Grand Cross with Vesta, Saturn and Pluto. Between two of the arms of this cross lie Ceres and Neptune; between the opposite arms are Jupiter and Venus. The rest of the planets are pretty much "also rans": Juno, Mercury, Pallas, Chiron, Mars, and Uranus.
I don't think I've ever seen a double-fan chart like this before. It definitely brings the whole Saturn-Jupiter-Pluto story right out into the open, so take note of any new trends that cross your path the next two weeks. Chances are, these issues will be with you a long time. This is a time to take a serious look at the roles you play in life and how they affect you. There's also an inner life of dreams and fantasies, where knights still joust with dragons, that's clammering for your attention. It's critical to strike a healthy balance here, particularly if you tend towards one extreme or the other. It takes both ends of this spectrum to make a well-rounded person and you may be experiencing the pains and troubles of being out of balance. This seems to be a time of making choices and decisions instead of sitting on the fence. Just realize that there are potent unconscious forces acting in coming months that you can't begin to really fathom yet. If you aren't confused now, you should be. Mistrust anything in your life that seems completely true or certain -- that's often the first thing the outer planets attack. Listen to the stories other people have to tell. It may feel like there are more stories than truths these days -- that is also an insight into how weird life can get. This is a difficult energy to surf, but it's also incredibly constructive in the long run. And it's here to stay...
Mars slips from Sagittarius into Capricorn on the 8th. This is actually one of the best placements for our Warrior God, since old Capricorn supplies elements of discipline and earthy "get down to it" that brings out the finest in the physical activities associated with Mars. If you've got some hard physical work to do, the next 6 weeks are an excellent window of opportunity. The emphasis should be on creating tangible results, not just some "pie in the sky" vision that has no lasting effects. Keep an eye out, however, for the possibility that you're running roughshod over others. It's easy to get so focussed on the goal at hand that you don't realize all the roadkill you've left behind you. Neither Mars nor Capricorn are known for their emotional sensitivity, so it's likely that others might complain if you get too carried away. Listen to them carefully and take the criticisms to heart, since the tendency is to interpret them as "just" an obstacle in your path. It's better to have partners instead of enemies when you're trying to get some work done. Mars moves into Aquarius on Oct 27.
The waveform for the new moon is considerably calmer, but less organized. Notice that the taller peaks have shifted over to about 24 degrees. Shifts like this are subtle, but can indicate major changes in the overall "mood" of the energies, because it's caused by a different cast of characters. The Saturn-Jupiter-Pluto crowd is quiet for a time, perhaps the only time all month -- take a deep breath. The inner planets are flying in formation, with Venus, the Sun and Mercury in a fan-shaped pattern that's now crossing the 20-25 degree area. The only slow moving planets in their path right now are erratic and surprising Uranus and wild-man Chiron -- expect some big changes indeed!
Our personal lives may feel very up in the air in coming weeks. Some of it is stress and chaos, but there's also an "aliveness" about this time that's very refreshing. Frequently, when something looks like an "issue" or a "problem", the solution is to simply look at it from a different angle. Uranus has an intriguing way of turning reality on its head and giving us a new perspective. And if that part of life is no longer scary or difficult or whatever your excuse is, it's easier to do something about it. What's interesting is that not only the thinking mind is affected ( Mercury), but the feelings (Venus) as well. It's one thing to try on different ideas about something, and quite another to intentionally feel different emotional responses about it. Quite often, despite the thinking mind knowing something is right, it still "feels funny" and we fail to change anything. It's these intuitive urges that we're seeing now and how to make them conscious. Don't be so concerned about the big questions and broad social issues I mentioned with Saturn-Jupiter-Pluto for a short time. Start with yourself, with your moment to moment shifts in awareness. Daily life is lesson enough for now.
Juno shifts from Cancer into Leo on the 17th for nearly 9 months, due to an upcoming retrograde cycle. She does manage to stick her big toe into Virgo for a week around Christmas time before hitting her retrograde station (12-25 at 0Vi03) and falling back into Leo, but that's all until she resumes normal motion and returns to Virgo for good on 2002-6-12. Juno in Leo is a curious mixture of warm companionship and personal ego wrapped into one package. Juno loves to be appreciated as an equal partner in a relationship, while Leo just loves to be appreciated, period. Obviously, this is a good placement for giving and receiving affection with your partners, as long as it is genuine and heartfelt. While it's tempting to place your needs ahead of your partners and focus on your own happiness alone, this is a strategy that will likely backfire. Leo needs to love as well as be loved, so let your heart open up little by little. Given the extended stay of Juno in this sign (9 months versus a more usual 3), these are issues that we need to concentrate on until we get them right. Listen to your loved ones, take seriously their suggestions on how to improve the relationship. Let them shine just as much as you wish to shine yourself. In the end, the partnership will flourish, and that can be the greatest happiness of all.
Jupiter is quincunx Pluto on the 19th. This is the 1st of 3 such contacts -- the others are on 11-26 and 2002-5-31. This aspect is a complicated affair, intimately tied in with the opposition of Saturn and Pluto that started last month and which also finishes up next May. These 3 heavy hitting planets are the backbone of the "sleeping giant" that we'll be experiencing from now until December, and then again in May-June of 2002 -- get used to them. It's interesting that Jupiter and Saturn are both known as "social planets", meaning they rule over our connections and responsibilities to society at large. With Pluto representing the power of our inner nature that forces us to change and grow in ways that reflect our true nature, there's obviously some problems of adjustment going on. Our social contacts are often defined by expectations and roles that we play as we hide behind a pleasant persona (from a Greek word meaning "theatrical mask"). For the purposes of fitting into society and enjoying the fruits of associating with others, we submerge a large part of our psyches -- it's called being civilized. Sometimes, though, the parts of you that are hidden, even from yourself it seems, demand to be acknowledged and accepted. It shouts "I'm tired of always being only half a human!" and demands that the persona give up some of the control. These can be very disturbing times, since something wild, unconscious and "out of control" is emerging. Well duh! If you act "civilized" all the time, all your uncivilized parts are shoved into the psychic closet and ignored. So when you hear a knock on that closet door, you don't really want to know what's on the other side. The good news, as well as the bad news, is that it's Pluto -- it's just yourself. But if you open the door and let yourself in, it's going to change everything, including the way you interact with others. That can get to be an issue, if you no longer fit easily into the roles and expectations that others have of you. People don't really like to "renegotiate" relationships like this, especially the casual and non-intimate ones, unless there's a good reason. Everyone will have to feel out where on this continuum they are most comfortable. Some groups of people may quickly open up more, others will maintain the status quo, most people will fall somewhere in between. More specifically, since we're discussing Jupiter, the way we give and take with others, "bartering" at many levels to enhance each others lives, may need some adjustment the next few months. Perhaps the kinds of "goodies" you share with others no longer satisfies you like it did before Pluto woke up this deeper part of you. Maybe the changes you're going through freak out people a bit and they start backing away from you subtly (they're probably not even aware of it). Or it could even be that your desire "to get my share" upsets the unspoken status quo. There are many possible manifestations of this aspect. Be open and flexible -- this can be quite a tightrope walk at times. Be honest, especially with yourself. Don't try to manipulate others for your ends, ever. And get used to being alone more than usual, since it's hard to drop your persona in public. Some old friends may pass out of your life, while some interesting characters may enter. Just be ready for some deep changes...
Speaking of Saturn, he reaches his retrograde station on the 26th at 14Gm58 and goes into reverse motion. Saturn backing up can be one of the most trying times for most people. It's a time to buckle down and put in some hard work. There may not be much in the way of rewards or recognition for your efforts (Saturn tends to present kudos after the fact) and the work can be unglamorous, but it needs to get done. You can tell the general area of your life to be working on by seeing which house in your birthchart contains the retrograde zone (it's between 8Gm02 and 14Gm58). The entire zone is within Gemini, giving this period a very mental tone. It's a good time to chip away on some mental project that involves coordinating lots of information and finding the deeper patterns. It's also a good time to do some "mental housecleaning" by letting go of ideas and attitudes that are holding you back. Saturn and Gemini can bring out the best in each other. When Gemini gets too flighty, distracted and disorganized, Saturn brings some discipline and focus to the task. When Saturn gets too serious and stuck in a rut, Gemini gets him to lighten up and try something different. It's hard to maintain that level of disciplined lightness for very long -- maybe that's one of the lessons to master now. So get ready for the tasks ahead. You'll like the results.