Archive for December 19th, 2016

Tarot for December 19th, 2016: Strength


Today’s Tarot card is the 9 of Wands (Strength).  We’ve already seen this card pop up once this month, and given that we are approaching the end of the Sun’s time in Sagittarius, it may seem a little odd to see it again so soon.  But perhaps it is fitting that we be reminded that Spirit is with us, and no matter how deep the darkness surrounding us becomes, we can and will be victorious.

As mentioned previously, the Thoth deck’s version of this card has both the Sun and the Moon on the central wand, so that both luminaries are united in their expression of Sagittarian fire, conscious and unconscious, masculine and feminine principles acting together equally.  Especially now during the third decanate of Sagittarius, the 9 of Wands invokes unity, as well as triumph over adversity.

The final degrees of any sign emphasize learning its last remaining lessons before we embark on a new sign and a whole new mode of experience.  The honest, free-spirited, idealistic, impetuous spirit of Sagittarius is a vital life-spark that we need to carry forward with us into the dark and cold of Capricorn season.  Being ruled by Jupiter means that Sagittarius wants to take ideas and run with them, expand on them, even overdo them in the quest to really experience them.  Now is the time to delve into the deeper meaning of things, to make sure that our horizons are as broad as we can make them.  It’s also a time to be social and fun, lest we forget as we enter 2016’s last Mercury retrograde today, with its intense Plutonian overtones.  The Sagittarian urge toward understanding is a useful push-off into that retrograde, as the mental reviewing characteristic of retrogrades unveils new layers of meaning and gives new insights for the centaur to pursue, and that in turn helps us learn the lessons of the retrograde with more hope and less resistance.

Now is the time to shake off doubts, bolster our courage, and go forward to meet uncertainty knowing that our conscious and unconscious minds are aligned with Spirit toward the same purpose, and we have the willpower to succeed.

Astrology of December 19, 2016: Finding a Way Through



Today sees Mars enter Pisces in the wee hours of the morning followed by Mercury stationing retrograde in Capricorn and then a flurry of Lunar aspects across the rest of the day.  

Mars entering Pisces changes our energy and drive from a logical, individualistic force to something softer, more spiritually and emotionally sensitive.  Pisces is a mutable water sign symbolized by two fish tied together at the tails, swimming in opposite directions, indicating an ability to integrate opposites in both viewpoints and action.  Mars in Pisces feels things out before proceeding, adapts itself to situations, flows through and around the players involved, and though it may tire more easily than Mars in Aquarius, in the end it has the quiet persistence of water flowing through even the tiniest crack in the wall.  Mars in Pisces can find a way through when no-one else can.

This quietly adaptive energy that overcomes boundaries may be especially useful when navigating the beginning of Mercury retrograde today.  At the very least, it can impart some patience in dealing with the potential technological and communication issues that so often characterize Mercury retrograde.  With Mercury stationing so close to Pluto in Capricorn, there is an unusual intensity about this retrograde, as it forces us to examine the structures and hierarchies in our lives, the goals that we have pursued since December 2nd, where it occupied the same degree that it will when it turns direct again on January 8th.  Pluto tends to break things apart into their essential components, decaying, dissolving, and forcing us to release that which no longer serves our purposes.  Necessary?  Yes.  Pleasant?  No.

This Mercury retrograde sees us turning inward at a time that normally encourages us to focus outward.  Remember the Piscean fish tied together at the tail?  Here is where Mars in Pisces may really shine, helping us to swim simultaneously within the social realms of Venus in Aquarius backed up by Jupiter in Libra and the introspective realm of Mercury retrograde in Capricorn intensified by both Pluto and the Sun.

Meanwhile, the Moon has its own instinctive plans for the day, some helpful, some not so.

Shortly after Mercury stations retrograde the Moon in Virgo opposes Neptune in Pisces.  The Moon in Virgo is distinctly practical, and in opposition to Neptune in Pisces says “we’ll have none of that dreamy, confusing stuff here!”  Neptune says otherwise.  The confrontation between these two may put us in a fog during the early morning hours, but could also produce some interesting dreams well worth noting, with the combination of these two forces encouraging us to balance boundary-dissolving vision with detail-oriented organization.

Several hours later the Moon finds itself inconjunct Venus in Aquarius, and that Virgoan practicality may find itself struggling to understand another kind of larger vision, one that is both distinctly individual and idealistically social.  With our values in this forward-thinking realm, our emotions may struggle to catch up, as our instincts during the Virgo Moon are to strive for exacting perfection while Aquarian vision is cognizant that human society is far from perfect, and not likely to be perfected by fussing over details at the expense of the larger picture.

The Moon in Virgo normally finds an ally in a trine to Mercury in Capricorn, but since Mercury is Virgo’s ruler and has just stationed retrograde, that Virgo Moon may find itself along for an introspective ride it didn’t bargain for.  Thankfully, Virgo is good at compulsively fact-checking and fine-tuning details to prevent technological and communications disasters, so this trine may help to smooth over the beginning of this Mercury retrograde.  With the Moon trining Pluto shortly after its trine to Mercury, that concern for details can also help to navigate the Plutonian intensity that marks this retrograde, and it is likely that we will have reason to be grateful for every little bit of help we can get in that department.  Still, emotions may also be heightened by this aspect, so the afternoon is not likely to be mild or forgettable.  This is a good start to the lessons we will be learning during this retrograde season.

The day ends with a late-night square from the Moon in Virgo to Saturn in Sagittarius.  After a day of confronting potential shake-ups in our neatly-ordered plans, our patience and self-discipline may find itself stretched a bit thin, and we may have a hard time dealing with viewpoints that contradict our own.  Given all that has contributed to a potentially exhausting day, we may be forced to confront our limitations through the effects of stress upon our health, so we are best off taking it easy tonight and giving ourselves some necessary self-care in order to keep from having our frazzled nerves lead to unhappy immune systems and a subsequent trip to the doctor.  The Lord of Karma suggests that we go to bed early! And while Moon in Virgo perfectionism might have us chasing worriesome little details into the night, I suggest that we listen to the cosmic taskmaster here and give ourselves some well-earned rest.  Chances are that we’re going to need it.


(All aspect times are calculated for Pacific Standard Time.  I do tend to speak in broad terms when I reference time on this blog, referring to time-frames like “morning” or “afternoon” rather than specific times, since I still have a lot of friends on the East Coast who read these posts and I’d like them to be pertinent to those friends as well as folks here on the West Coast.)