Welcome to 2019: Feet on the Ground, Eyes on the Stars


January was named for the Roman god Janus, who looked both ways – back to the past and forward to the future. Finding our center between past and future, in other words, staying in the present moment, might be the best way to navigate through life, but particularly through 2019.

Perusing through the elemental balance of the heavy-hitting planetary energies of 2019, we can observe there is a great deal of WATER/EARTH and some FIRE. What is glaringly missing is AIR. What do we make of this picture?

    • The Mercury Retrogrades this year all occur in the element of WATER.
    • The Venus Star Point starts the year in WATER, then changes to FIRE in August.
    • The Nodal Axis is now in WATER/EARTH (Cancer/Capricorn)
    • Uranus enters EARTH/Taurus in 2019, for the next 7 years
    • Saturn remains in EARTH/Capricorn all year and through 2020
    • Jupiter spends most of the year in FIRE/Sagittarius
    • Neptune remains in WATER/Pisces
    • Chiron goes back to WATER/Pisces then into FIRE/Aries for a while
    • Pluto stays in EARTH/Capricorn all year and through 2023

What does not having AIR predominant this year do for us?

AIR is the element that represents the mind and the airwaves in general. It is about information and what we do with it. It is about the mind and how we transmit the energies from our minds to another’s. AIR gives us objectivity and an inner dialogue that poses the question and then provides the answer. (Note: All of the AIR signs are symbolized by dual forces: Gemini the twins, Libra the scales and Aquarius the two airwaves).

The lack of planets in AIR can potentially be a good thing to help us tune out the multiple channels of information that pour into our brains on a day-to-day basis. But we also lack the measured response to outside stimulus, reacting rather than reflecting. This year, more than ever, it is important to think for ourselves in response to whatever type of information is coming at us. Don’t believe everything you hear is an understatement – it might be don’t believe anything you hear!

There are many different ways to look at 2019 – because each of the planets has its own agenda. Some of them agree with one another and some of them don’t.

If you are lucky enough to have your planet agreeing with the others, then no matter how hard the tasks at hand, and there will be some big ones in the coming year, with lots of responsibility and the feeling that you’re carrying your weight on your shoulders – the load will seem lighter.

If your planet is arguing with the others, it will seem as if there’s a constant drain of energy siphoning itself from your body, making every day seem like drudgery. The signs being affected this year (or challenged – or tested) are Aries, Taurus, Cancer, Sagittarius, Capricorn and Pisces. Other signs will feel a push/pull with the push/pull of some high ranking planets this year, but those just mentioned, particularly Cancer and Capricorn, may feel the tug-of-war the most.

Feet on the ground theme refers to all the planets in earth signs this year. Pay attention to what’s right in front of us. With Jupiter in Sagittarius, we also get an opportunity to keep our eyes focused on the “stars” or the goal. What are we aiming our arrow towards? Keep dreaming, keep aiming. This is Jupiter starting a 12-year cycle in its own sign. Think back to the end of 2006 and through most of 2007 when Jupiter was last in its own sign. What vision were you holding then and how has it worked out? Is it time for a new vision or is it time to refine the one you are still holding on to from 2007?

Capricorn/Cancer Tug-of-War (EARTH/WATER) meets Mars in Aries (FIRE)

2018 is ending with a government shut-down, and the people of the U.S. are witnessing this tug-of-war between the Capricorn Saturn square Aries Mars, a perfect example of a cardinal square involving these two signs. Mars wants to go, especially in Aries — my way or the highway. Saturn resists and imposes conditions and more conditions. How is this playing out in our personal lives?

Another year has gone by, another one is on the way in. But this year Mars is in the picture, by starting the calendar year off at its own starting position: 0 Aries, the so-called “beginning” of the wheel. 0 Aries represents spring, new life and new energy. The birth of a new baby, idea or motor takes place. Squares to Capricorn planets in the early stages of life will make Mars tougher and somewhat smarter than normal, due to necessity. But don’t give up or abandon it because it isn’t moving as fast as it normally would in Aries, because those squares are developmental learning skills along the way. You’ll get there. But pay attention along the way.

At the beginning of the year, Chiron, Hygeia and Mars are zodiacally joined on the cusp of Pisces/Aries. With Mars starting the year in Aries, we may feel a surge of new energy, all fired up and ready to launch our plan. This surge will last until mid-February when it leaves its own sign Aries and ventures into Venus territory— the sign Taurus. But along its way through Aries, Mars confronts Saturn, Jupiter and Pluto, indicating some delays, then a green light, then finally the push forward.

With four big planets in Capricorn throughout the year ~ Saturn, Pluto, the South Node and a couple of eclipses ~ everyone will feel a deepening sense of responsibility, more of a workload, less time and less bankable assets. In fact, you may be asked to work longer hours, with less pay. The “austerity” measures Greece went through a few years back (and is still recovering from) – could be something affecting a much larger population. Capricorn is the sign of the law, of bodies of power, whether governments, corporations, collectives, etc., and there are many forces bearing down on those bodies of power in this coming period. The response from those in charge of carrying out the wishes of the commander, the father, the principal or the CEO, will be to attempt to enforce tighter control, more rigid laws or rules, with less freedom and more responsibility. WATCH YOUR BACK, NECK AND SHOULDERS! You may be working harder and longer, to take care of others, to take care of yourself. Setting boundaries or limits is another important teaching of Saturn in Capricorn. Once the load breaks the camel’s back, there’s no moving forward. Listen to wisdom of your body, it speaks. It will let you know when you are starting to reach your limit.

With so much Capricorn energy bearing down on us, one way to navigate through the year might be the simple notion of finding joy in the mundane.

Uranus in Taurus — (EARTH)

Markets are bullish and then the bull goes to sleep, lays down in the pasture, takes time out. Ups and downs, roller-coaster like, keeping us forever guessing and wondering where the next stop on this wild ride will be, and will we get off or do we keep riding? Let the technology symbolized by Uranus, who, according to Richard Tarnas, is a Promethean carrier archetype, bring a new awareness on a collective scale. This planetary archetype delivers light – awareness – even consciousness, by assisting us, sometimes vigorously so, to move beyond the limitations imposed by Saturn. We can expect Uranus to bring light to the earth, to swoop down from the sky in his flying machine and to take charge. Investing in technologies that sustain earth and its fertility and its continued life is the top of the new pyramid. Uranus spends the first part of 2019 in Aries, a roller-coaster combination. By March 6th, it will enter Taurus for 7 years. Stay tuned for more on this.

Jupiter square Neptune (FIRE/WATER)

Very few planets are interacting with one another right now. It’s mostly planets interacting with lunar nodes. But the one exception is this pair, both in their own signs. There are three exact squares between this pair in 2019, the first occurring January 13th. This is something to watch this year!

The Jupiter/Neptune cycle began in 2009 when they were conjunct in Aquarius – in fact, it was a triple conjunction in Aquarius. Chiron was with them imparting a centralized feeling of hope and humanitarian progress. Obama was inaugurated into his first term that year having been elected on that legendary slogan: HOPE. Almost immediately he signed into law the Affordable Care Act, now being challenged as unlawful. Now, with these two planets entering the fourth quarter and both facing off with one another in their last quarter square, some are asking: Where is that Hope? This aspect is a firm reminder of where we began the cycle and take stock of where we are now. How to keep HOPE alive.

A closer look at Jupiter reveals his nature, which is to expand, feel confident, sometimes too confident and over-sure of himself. He’s the planet operating as the over-seer of Sagittarius, a sign we often refer to as the sage or guru, but also one who sorely lacks hubris. Jupiter, as Zeus or CEO, takes the law into one’s own hands and defends it on principles of high moral ground. And, who can question the supreme deity? But the moral implications commanded by this figure-head bring it back to one subject – oneself. The square to Neptune might be blocking the signal, but if one’s own moral compass is firmly hitched to the helm, one will know the right course to steer, no matter what your mind tells you.

Jupiter and Neptune also have a lot to do with faith and faith-based institutions and communities. Blind faith is easily a concept which could be filed under Jupiter/Neptune. The churches, synagogues, temples, shrines, mosques and chapels — places where people release themselves to a higher power — these are connected to Jupiter and Neptune and will point out what is still being hidden and what is now ready to be revealed. That said, no matter what is revealed, people still get to choose whether they will still believe the lies or whether they’re fearless enough to opt-out.

And finally, let’s take a closer look at Neptune, the master of illusion, imagination and dreams and Jupiter, the entrepreneur, gambler, adventure-seeker and wish-fulfilling genie. Something fantastic is about to come your way. Or is it? Did somebody just hand you the very thing you’ve been dreaming of for all of your life? Or was it just a tease? This is the time to review your dream. What is it? How is it working out?

  • First, what is the big deception going on right in front of your eyes that you can’t see?
  • Second, what is it you have believed all your life, seriously? Because this is a time that you will be testing that belief, rigorously.
  • Third, and this is probably the BIG one: Don’t believe everything you hear or read. To borrow a line from Edgar Allen Poe, “Believe none of what you hear and half of what you see.” Be sure to ask questions. Determine what the person selling you this beautiful dream is getting out of it. You may be given something you want. But what price are you paying for it? Get the quote up front.

Neptune has just passed the halfway point in Pisces (where it began in 2011). FAKE NEWS has never been more prevalent. It’s not just the media. Fake news is all around in the form of misinformation and disinformation, especially when you consider the time spent receiving that information from the internet. Unless you know the facts to be true yourself, like ‘Aunt So-and-So’ just died, remember to keep an open mind, don’t jump to conclusions and don’t over-react. The big questions of life are being asked now. Prepare yourself to have your mind blown or to release so many things you have believed for so long. Suddenly, the veil will be ripped away and you will suddenly see that the Wizard of Oz is operating the machine behind the curtain…and he may not necessarily be on your side. Or, is he?

In summary, Jupiter square Neptune from their own signs will either totally reinforce your faith in what you already believe or will completely turn it upside down. Most people are not ready to have life-long beliefs challenged so use the months of January, June and September to keep an open mind when you live-stream information coming through – simply to determine whether there’s another story behind the original story.

And finally, with Jupiter and Neptune – don’t be afraid to wish for the biggest dream you’ve ever had to come to fruition. It may or may not come this year, but it doesn’t hurt to hold on to the dream. Beliefs are a big part of our reality. Beginning with the 1970s best-selling author Jane Roberts of The Seth Material, who gave us the mantra “You Create Your Own Reality,” to the more recent epi-geneticist Dr. Bruce Lipton and his Biology of Belief, we actually do manifest our beliefs. And, it will give us something wonderful to be entertained by while we are slogging through the fertile mud of all the Earth and Water signs this year.

One final word about the dream. We might get a look at it through the lens of Uranus in Taurus, who will sextile Neptune in Pisces and quincunx Jupiter in Sagittarius. That quincunx might reveal that the long-held dream is being temporarily shattered, or at least re-focused. There might be a deeper truth that will be revealed, letting us know which way indeed, to aim the arrow of Sagittarius and hit the bulls-eye of the Taurus.

Much more to say about the year. Stay tuned to updates about the following topics:

  • Uranus in Taurus
  • Chiron in Aries
  • Venus Star Point for 2019
  • Eclipses and more…

To see a list of upcoming events, please visit the events page.

Venus Retrograde in Scorpio – Finding Buried Treasure

It’s a good time now to think back to March 2017, the last time Venus went retrograde and began a new cycle in the sign of Aries. As  we are about to witness the completion of that cycle, we are beginning a new one which will occur in Scorpio. There is often an overlap during this time — an ending phase and a beginning phase that occur simultaneously.  Think of this as the tidying up or even a releasing or renewing of what that period brought forth in the way of investments, commitments, engagements and the initiation of new activities in our lives.

We are getting ready for the next Venus Star Point at 3 Scorpio which will occur on October 25, the date the new cycle of Venus begins, while retrograde. The Star Point occurs when Venus, Earth and the Sun are all in alignment, something referred to as a “cazimi” or the Kiss of the Sun. But before that, we will see Venus go retrograde, on October 5th, at 11 Scorpio. Scorpio is the sign of things that might not be readily visible on the surface, calling forth Venus to look at what lies hidden beneath. What is beneath? Is it buried treasure or is it trash? As Venus slowly makes her way back over these first 11 degrees of Scorpio, we might discover a little bit of both. Scorpio is both private and secretive.

What happens when planets transit through this region of the zodiac? Things you thought were private can become public. Lies are exposed. The distant past may rear its head in frightening ways. Emotions bubble forth like the underground sleeping volcano or dragon that is suddenly ignited by a lightning bolt. Deception and betrayal can be evidenced. People whom you once trusted can now be seen to be not so trustworthy. The eagle-eye of Scorpio is upon us. As Scorpio is a Mars-ruled sign, it can give us courage to get down to the truth, even if it means bursting a bubble. And Scorpio is also a water sign. Call forth the feelings of the deep that do not lie. People with planets in Scorpio’s domain have a built-in b.s. detector. The mind may not wish to believe it, but the core feelings cannot deny it.

As I write this, the Brett Kavanaugh hearing is taking place, perfectly timed in this cycle of Venus in Scorpio. It is a gut-wrenching event, and no matter who you believe, the process will leave a fair amount of corpses in its wake. Sure, this is political. But in our current era, things are political. Last year in early October the #metoo movement began, when the Sun and Jupiter were transiting over early Scorpio, on the degree of this year’s Venus Star Point. So as Venus and the Sun reactivate that part of the zodiac in this time period, the battle is re-engaged. What is the truth? It is a contentious battle, with many people in power vehemently denying the allegations raised against Kavanaugh, a would-be Supreme Court nominee. Christine Blasey Ford was the first to come forward to raise a red flag against him for the sexual mis-conduct and abuse she received at his hand, and now is being joined by a chorus of others with similar claims.  Early Scorpio IS the region of sexual mis-conduct. It has been shown, again and again, that when planets are positioned over this region, people in high places are exposed. In the past, the people in power were supported. But the times are (slowly) changing and the tide is turning in another direction. Finally, the victims are being heard.

Embedded within the current Venus cycle, is an exact square between Venus (female) and Mars (male) principles, advancing the contentious battle being waged between the accuser, Dr. Ford and the accused, Judge Kavanaugh. While not every sexual allegation is necessarily male vs. female, the symbolism of Mars squaring off with Venus does not bode well for the male/female dynamic at this time. Venus in Scorpio is emotional, passionate, and feels things deeply. It asks to be heard. Mars in Aquarius can act like it is hearing the painful cry of Venus, but reacts with detachment and can coolly dis the whole affair. These two are like fire and ice. The hotter Venus becomes, the cooler becomes Mars.

Hopefully none of us will experience the level of drama that these hearings are engendering. But one thing is clear. It will bring up deeply felt emotions that may have been buried for a long time. This is why it is important to bring forth the buried treasure. Yes, deeply held emotions can indeed turn out to be treasure. You might refer back to this same season in 8 year increments, when Venus last transited in retrograde through Scorpio, such as 2010, 2002, 1994, 1986, etc.

But Scorpio is not just the sexual mis-conduct and cover-ups. Certainly, sex and sexuality are important elements of this time, as is gender. Scorpio is a Mars sign, while Libra is a Venus sign. Venus and Mars represent the female and male principles in life, polarities that are possessed of highly-charged reactions to one another. If it wasn’t for this dynamic connection, we might be faced with a diminishing population, possibly verging on extinction. Instead, it is the vibrant meeting of these two energies that brings incredible desire and ultimate mating, resulting in the dominant Homo Sapiens population of today’s world. It is what brings male and female together!

This is the era of the gender-bending phenomena. This year Mars, the male planet, reversed direction and is now being followed by Venus, the female planet. And the third party to this dynamic duo is Uranus. Uranus, known for radical change, affects both sexes so we may see more people embracing changes and coming out to themselves and the world. Whether we are dealing with a battle of the sexes, new definitions of gender, people’s phobias about trans-genders or same sex preferences, this is now how the current is flowing and cannot be reversed.

We are in the last decade of a 100-year passage of the Venus Star through the sign Scorpio. Important events of history occur when the Venus Star Point leaves a sign and enters a new one.  We can anticipate a shift in the masculine/feminine dynamic during this migration, similar to what we have witnessed during the dramatic gender restructuring that has occurred during these past 90 years of the Scorpio Star Point transit. In other words, women aren’t always from Venus and men are not always from Mars. Often, the reverse is true, especially as evidenced during these last 80-90 Aries/Scorpio Star Point periods. It is certain that male and female roles have transformed even for the hetero-sexual population. And now, as we approach the end of Venus’ passage through Scorpio and Aries, the mutation and morphing of genders is no longer limited to one’s emotional and psychological well-being, but is extending to physical realms as well.

The retrograde of the 2018 Venus cycle, shown here, represents the “hot” area of the horoscope in this cycle, between 25 degrees of Libra to 11 degrees of Scorpio, with particular emphasis given to 3 degrees Scorpio, the new Venus Star Point degree. Note that two signs are being impacted in this cross-over Venus cycle—both Libra and Scorpio.

Oct 5                 Venus SRx                          10°Scorpio50’
Oct 26               Venus Star Point                  03°Scorpio06’
Nov 16              Venus SD                             25°Libra14’

There is so much more to say. So please tune into one of the fine presentations that are upcoming on the web. Just follow the links below to access simply some of the best Venus cycle material available on the planet right now!

Mars Retrograde: June 26-August 26, 2018

Beginning its retrograde at 9 Aquarius and ending it at 26 Capricorn, Mars passes through the region of the Zodiac that symbolizes the cusp between the executive (Capricorn) and legislative (Aquarius) branches of government. Mars will trace a path three times over this region as it ends and then begins its current cycle. Mars will initiate some forceful action regarding the decisions and affairs that each of these two distinct entities face with one another.Whether it is applied to the highest levels of political office or to one’s own work team, sports team or family grouping, the energy demands some type of conflict resolution between the group leader and the group itself. But be patient. While Mars is in retrograde it moves very slowly, taking longer to complete its mission than normal.

To most observers of the USA birth chart, it is clear that Mars is dancing over the country’s natal Pluto, something that could be construed as a war dance or a victory dance, depending upon one’s perspective in the matter. This is especially true as it results in a democratic vote of confidence or no-confidence, and once the vote is cast, the appropriate action will be taken.

This bodes well for an angry population who would love nothing more than to capture the head of their leader and march it through the streets, the type of spectacle that frequently occurred in centuries past. But whether it seems like it or not, we are living in the Age of Democracy and situations like this are handled in the Capricorn Star Point era behavior of political correctness.

MARS Rx AND Direct CYCLE OF 2018:

5.13.18—Mars enters shadow—28 Capricorn

6.25.18—Mars goes retrograde—9 Aquarius

8.27.18—Mars is direct—28 Capricorn

10.10.18—Mars leaves shadow—9 Aquarius


We can see from the dates of the new Mars cycle that this is a 5-month period encompassing Capricorn and Aquarius. By election day 2018, Mars will still be in Aquarius, in a mutual reception with Uranus. That aspect becomes exact one week later, but will still be felt prior, making a somewhat agreeable aspect with one another (the sextile).

There are quite a few notable sign changes during the week of the election, including Uranus backing into Aries, Jupiter forward into Sagittarius, the Nodes into Cancer/Capricorn and But what is key about election day 2018 is the position of Uranus and the Nodes, in a tight cardinal T-square in late degrees of Aries, Cancer and Capricorn, right upon the US Pluto. This amount of weight-bearing energy from the cosmos landing on the nation’s Pluto is intensely tumultuous regarding the changes that will come about from this event. Considerable pressure upon Pluto in Capricorn which represents the executive branch of the nation could force a rupture and expose the dark secrets of an illegal and immoral under-cover op. With the US natal Pluto in the 2nd House, it is quite likely that dark money is involved and exposed.

Inner Wheel: USA Natal — Outer Wheel: Election Day 2018

What about the Mars cycle on a personal level? Generally, Mars in Aquarius would indicate actions being taken to benefit the many, rather than the one (Spock here). In Aquarius, Mars bows to Uranus. There is a greater sense of freedom, independent action and risk-taking in this configuration. In Capricorn it supports achieving goals on a personal or professional level and bows to Saturn where honoring tradition helps one’s success. Mars and Saturn in Capricorn are strong. From August 12th to September 10th this is where we will find ourselves climbing a big mountain, but taking it one step at a time, observing and listening, will assist. The voice of the elders, the ones who have the experience and a solid record of achievement—we can look to them for guidance and support.

The summer months of 2018 bring three eclipses along with this Mars retrograde. Plans keep changing. Explosive elements are in the air. Summer’s festivals of music and outdoor activities seem like the right place to be with Mars in Aquarius, but these same gatherings can take on an element of explosiveness. Mars in Aquarius doesn’t just dance in the streets, it shouts so loud it lights up the airwaves and demands attention. By tackling controversial issues such as guns, gender, racisism, sexual harassment, immigration—all of the hot topics of today—social gatherings become politically charged events. It is is the voice of youth that makes the most difference in these matters. They, at a collective level, can be heard. It was the youth in the 60s that commanded attention and it is the youth of today that can effectively do the same.

Uranus Exits Aries – A Road Filled With Fire and Fury

Seven years ago, the divine rebel and change-agent planet, Uranus entered Aries.

It was March 2011, and the day this planet crossed the equinoctial point and entered the fiery sign of the ram, we witnessed the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Power Plant in Japan caused by the nearby earthquake. A tsunami soon followed, spewing dangerous radiation throughout the region and spilling into the ocean.

Uranus is nothing, if not dramatic.

Here we are in the last days and degree of Uranus in Aries, before it enters Taurus on May 15th. Once again, this ‘shock and awe’ planet is making a dramatic exit from the sign as we witness the volcanic eruption of Kilauea in Hawaii, with evacuation orders being issued on the Big Island.

And it isn’t as if the last seven years hasn’t been exceedingly full of drama! In 2017 alone, record-breaking temperatures were held responsible for some of the worst disasters on record. Hurricane Irma in Florida, Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico are just a few natural disasters that impacted the U.S. Fires and floods in California and the dozens of other earth-shattering events around the world affecting India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Iraq, Afghanistan, Mexico, China ought to have issued a global wake-up call to just how severe the implications of climate change are in the real world. Now that Uranus is leaving Aries, what can we expect from Uranus in Taurus?

Uranus enters Taurus – Earth Changes

Probably the phrase that comes most to mind when thinking of this combination is “earth changes.” Taurus is an earth sign, a fixed earth sign at that. And fixed earth, while admired for its sturdy and solid nature, is also rigid to a fault. No pun intended here, but the fault lines around the Earth might seem to be most vulnerable during this transit.

Of course the metaphor here applies to all of us, not just the earth itself. What are we clinging to with stubborn rigidity that needs to be released? One thought that comes to mind is a lagging, backward set of political leaders who refuse to acknowledge climate change and who are investing little if anything into reversing the devastating affects of global warming and its resulting crisis to the earth.

Taurus isn’t just “earth”. It’s Mother Earth. Yes, it’s correct that Taurus is symbolized by Gaia, Mother Earth who mated with the sky god Ouranos (Uranus) and bore dozens of offspring, all whom were rejected by Ouranos. However unlikely a marriage this is, we find them together again for the next seven years. Gaia devised a plot to render Ouranos impotent by having their son Cronus (our Saturn) castrate him. Falling into the ocean, the severed genitalia of Ouranos gave birth first the Furies and ultimately Aphrodite.

This next seven years of Uranus in Taurus presents strong implications of raising enough havoc and destructive tendencies upon our Mother Earth to force something important to take place in the realm of turning our massive spaceship, planet Earth, around and steering it to a new, more sustainable direction.

Occupy New Ground

On a personal level we can envision how our next seven years, with Uranus in Taurus, will shape up. This is the time, mid-May 2018, when Uranus steps into Taurus for the first time in 75 years. Plant the seeds of change, whether earth change or personal change, that marches in step with the current conditions facing us.

Time to wake up the earthiness in all of us and get back to barefoot in the park.

We will awaken to the importance of nature in every day life and rituals/meditation/yoga will become mainstream

Read more about Uranus in Taurus here: 2018-coming-down-to-earth

Thanks, Catherine Boyer, for editorial comments and assistance.

2018: Coming Down to Earth

With Saturn’s ingress into Capricorn, the Venus Star Point in Capricorn and Uranus’ entry into Taurus this year, the earth signs are prominent. Coming out of 2017’s intense planetary line-up of fire, earth feels like a relief. With its needs for practicality and grounding along with sensible actions, manifestation of those visionary dreams seems more likely. The focus is on slowing down, taking things one at a time. This is especially true after mid-May when Taurus receives Uranus.

URANUS IN TAURUS—2018 to 2026

Yes, the change-agent, revolutionary Uranus, comes crashing into the Bull this year. Taurus isn’t a sign that necessarily welcomes change, but for the next seven years, people who possess key planets in this sign, will find themselves making bold moves, performing actions they never dreamed they would undertake. The last day Taurus hosted Uranus was May 15, 1942. And on the 76th anniversary, precisely on May 15, 2018, Uranus returns to Taurus with the message: “I told you I’d be back!”

Venus and Uranus share an interesting mythological story. In fact, it is the seed of Uranus, thrashing in the ocean, that gave birth to Venus. Uranus entering Venus’ sign, then, marks an important meeting. First, it will be changing from a Mars-ruled sign (Aries) to a Venus-ruled sign (Taurus). With the goddess of beauty, love, comfort, security and pleasure hosting the change-agent planet, we are sowing a new cycle that may certainly bring us back to earth, but at the same time, encourages us to plant sustainable (hopes, dreams and wishes) seeds that we can watch grow to full maturity over this next 7 years. Some may be seeking to provision life on Mars. But with Uranus in Taurus—the message might be—occupy new ground, right here on Earth.

Venus will move three times over early Scorpio, Mars three times over early Aquarius and Uranus three times over early Taurus in 2018. This presents a classic T-square involving three fixed signs. Fixed signs are generally hard to budge off their positions. But this year, with all that activity, those who do have early degrees of fixed signs (between 0-5) will see their worlds re-arranged in great measure. And you know what? They just might be up for the change!


In line with the idea of slowing down and taking inventory, especially of one’s resources, many planets will be in retrograde motion this year. Every year the outer planets turn retro for about 5 months each, yet it is unusual that all three inner planets will have overlapping retrograde and shadow periods all at once. With the triple alliance of Mercury, Venus, and Mars all doing retrograde loops this year, it will be a time of many directional changes for us all.


I’ve always appreciated the three times per year when Mercury goes retrograde. Rather than be concerned if my computer, phone or car will break down, I am grateful for the slowing down and reversal of activity. With so much information pouring into us on a daily basis, along with increased amounts of physical activity, our nervous systems need a break. So every four months, Mercury is programmed to force us to take a step back, before moving forward. Clearing out old files and engaging in any activity that begins with a “re-“ such as reviewing, resting, retreating, “re-tweeting”, rewinding, remodeling, re-financing, re-establishing (you get the message?) are appropriate. And this is our chance—during Mercury’s universally acknowledged “Retrograde Cycle”. The other planets may be occupying earth signs, but for Mercury the messenger, 2018 is his elemental year of fire!

Mercury does its retrograde 3x per year, every year. But each year these Mercury retrogrades occur in a different element. (I recommend Gary Caton’s excellent new book Hermetica Trypticha, which discusses Mercury and the elemental year.) For this year, it is fire. In other words, the three retrogrades are as follows: 16 Aries, 23 Leo, 13 Sag. All Fire Signs will feel the impact of the three fiery directional changes this year. This means we must keep on our toes. Think of doing a tango. It’s hot and fiery, but it moves in very precise, intentional, directional ways.

Fire is an element of passion and spirit, risk-taking, speculation and adventure. One of its negative manifestations can be outbursts of anger. Fiery reactions coming from the subconscious can have disastrous effects, whether we are looking at a mass shooting or an ill-directed set of words that produce deadly consequences. It can also be destructive, as once a flame becomes ignited and gets any encouragement at all from the wind (air) it can destroy an entire village. We can use the directions of fire to focus our energy on a goal and cast our vision in that direction. Then let it go. The secret to achieving what we want, as many spiritual teachers have instructed, is in the letting go. Mercury retro periods offer us great opportunities for dreaming, inner focus, and most importantly of all—listening!

Shadow periods, listed below, are part of the Mercury retrograde cycle. The shadow periods both precede and follow the actual retrograde. During shadow periods, people will often ask, “Is Mercury retrograde?” This is due to the deceleration process of our speediest planet, which takes place during these times.


3.9.18—Mercury enters shadow—5 Aries

3.22.18—Mercury enters retrograde—16 Aries

4.15.18 Mercury is direct—5 Aries

5.2.18—Mercury leaves shadow—16 Aries


7.8.18—Mercury enters shadow—11 Leo

7.26.18—Mercury enters retrograde—23 Leo

8.19.18—Mercury is direct—11 Leo

9.2.18—Mercury leaves shadow—23 Leo


10.29.18—Mercury enters shadow—27 Scorpio

11.16.18—Mercury enters retrograde—13 Sagittarius

12.6.18—Mercury is direct—27 Scorpio

12.25.18—Mercury leaves shadow—13 Sagittarius


Mars does its retrograde every 2 years. Its normal time in a sign is about six weeks. During its retrograde period, it can stay in a sign for five months, delivering a very Martian type of energy to that particular sign. Mars doesn’t mess around. It’s direct, to the point and seizes the moment. Mars hovering over a particular area brings decisive energy and action. Mars moves in on whatever has been hanging in the shadows.

The last Mars retrograde in 2016, occurred in Sagittarius. The big topic that year was immigration, a Sag-related theme. The one prior, in 2014, was in Libra. The big topic that year was same-sex marriage (marriage is Libra’s domain), and that was the year it became sanctified by law. This year it will retrograde in Aquarius, dipping back to the last few degrees of Capricorn. But most of its retrograde is Aquarius, an air sign. The entire airline industry may be scrutinized more closely at this time. As an air sign, Aquarius also rules media and media’s role is to report rather than create news!  Media’s principles could come under intense scrutiny. Watch for laws and regulations to be imposed on media networks and the free streaming of information, as well.

Because Mars will pass over both Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn on its way through the retrograde loop, there will likely be a number of trigger responses to current leadership (in all levels of government, corporate and even personal lives).

Yes, those that rule are in for a surprise this year. Many will fall. Although Capricorn is a sign of action (cardinal) it is also a sign of consequences—and the law. Repressive laws will cause suppression and suffering. But Martian energy through Aquarius motivates the people to oppose this by striking or striking back. Look for reversals of long-time pieces of legislation or legal actions taken. I would not be surprised if a precedent is set for bodies of the populace to file class-action, collective lawsuits against those in authority, for abuses of power and irreverent failings to support the constitution and the people they represent. Mars passes three times over the U.S. Pluto at 27 Capricorn during upcoming cycle change. As planets begin to mass around the U.S. Pluto, over the next several years (first the Mars retrograde this year, then Saturn in 2020, Jupiter in 2020 and finally Pluto in 2021) this particular theme will become more prevalent.

Look also to these next few elections. We are apt to see many incumbents ousted and many fresh new faces of change, especially female faces, pumping new blood into a dying, stagnant system that is all but on life-support.

MARS Rx AND Direct CYCLE OF 2018:

5.13.18—Mars enters shadow—28 Capricorn

6.25.18—Mars goes retrograde—9 Aquarius

8.27.18—Mars is direct—28 Capricorn

10.10.18—Mars leaves shadow—9 Aquarius


Venus goes retrograde every 1.6 years. Rarely do we find both Mars and Venus retrograde in the same year, but this year this is the case.

In fact, Mars and Venus are both in the shadow phases together—Mars leaving and Venus entering, in September. In the center of Venus’ 40-42 day retrograde cycle, she is conjunct the Sun, creating the astronomical “cazimi”, a term used to describe the planet moving into the heart of the Sun. This is the point I use as the Venus Star Point. Five of these points, over an eight year period, produce the brilliant and beautiful Venus Star.


This year we get two cazimis of Venus with the Sun. Cazimi is a term to describe the planet in the heart of the Sun. The first Venus cazimi took place on January 9th with her exterior conjunction of the Sun at 19 Capricorn; the second one will take place with her interior conjunction of the Sun at 3 Scorpio on October 26th.  Upon January’s “kiss of Venus” we greet Venus in the western sky, visible after sunset. We will enjoy this glorious view of Venus in the evening sky through the spring, summer and fall months this year. But by mid-October, Venus will disappear from our sight, once again to kiss the Sun while retrograde and bestow her brilliance to us in the morning skies by early November.

January’s Capricorn Venus Star will be in effect for most of the year. This involves January/Capricorn EARTH – practical, organized fix home, garden, nurture body, grounding, well-being, action oriented to reach goals, Feminine; Matriarch, Crone, Wise woman – organizing to reach unprecedented heights because politically and socially they are on the RISE!

This backwards dance of Venus passes through both Scorpio and Libra this year. Scorpio is a Mars sign. Libra is a Venus sign. Venus and Mars represent the female and male principles in life, polarities that are possessed of a highly-charged reaction to one another. Were it not for this dynamic connection, we might be faced with a diminishing population, possibly verging on extinction. Instead, it is the vibrant meeting of these two energies that brings incredible desire and ultimate mating, accounting for the Homo Sapiens dominant population of today’s world. Yes, it is this reaction that brings male and female together.

Speaking of male/female, this is the year when the gender-bending phenomena could reach new heights. Mars, the male planet, reverses direction followed by Venus, the female planet reversing direction. Uranus, known for radical change, affects both. More people embracing the change and coming out could be met by more people causing an infinite amount of challenges and opposition. A battle of the sexes? Perhaps. New definitions of gender? Most likely. Think of it as though the current is flowing in a certain direction and cannot be stopped.

The next Venus Star Point, at 3 Scorpio, will occur on October 25, 2018, in opposition to Uranus at 0 Taurus. The Full Moon, just preceding that event, on October 24th, is at 1 Taurus. Individual and joint resources will be key issues of the time. This Star Point in Scorpio shifts later this year into the depths of the swamp just in time for the early November elections in the U.S. Did we hear someone say they were going to drain the swamp, two years ago at election? This will be the time. Election time will see many more women thoughtfully and intelligently railing against the body politic.  Sheer determination – it will be an unstoppable movement (Fixed energy)!

In 2017, Jupiter and the Sun met at 3* Scorpio. At that moment, a small group of women summoned the courage to stand up and speak out about the pervasive sexual abuse taking place in Hollywood, resulting in the now infamous ousting of Harvey Weinstein and scores of other sexual predators in the entertainment industry.

This giant #MeToo wave, born in response to the sexual abuse, traveled around the globe and revealed the issue is not unique to Hollywood. Indeed, universally, in almost every occupation and walk of life, women (and men) were joined to the #MeToo movement.

It is worth noting that 3* Scorpio is one of the Venus Star degrees of our time, as it sits on the 8-year, 5-pointed star pentacle. Underneath that Jupiter/Sun (famous men in power combo) sat the higher vibration of Venus, the sacred feminine, coming up from beneath the surface, announcing to the world: Sexual Tyranny Will No Longer Be Tolerated.

How many retrograde planets per month for 2018?

Mercury, Jupiter (2) – March

Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn, Pluto (4) – April

Jupiter, Saturn, Pluto (3) – May

Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Pluto (4) – June

Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Pluto, Chiron (7) – July

Mercury, Mars, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, Chiron (7) – August

Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto, Chiron (5) – September

Venus, Uranus, Neptune, Chiron (4) – October

Mercury, Venus, Uranus, Neptune, Chiron (5) – November

Mercury, Uranus, Chiron (3) – December


Content of this issue © Arielle Guttman, Sophia Venus Productions, Santa Fe, NM
Thanks to Catherine Boyer, for editorial assistance and research.

Mars Retrograde again

On April 17th, Mars turned retrograde. About every two years Mars goes retrograde. What does that mean for us personally, for the world and how do I best make use of it? Here are some phases (or steps) through the process that might help make sense of it.

Phase 1: March 6-April 17: MARS DIRECT IN SAGITTARIUS
Mars entered Sagittarius in early March. Sagittarius is the sign of the goal, or in this case, the destination. Where is Mars (planet of action) headed? Maybe it’s somewhere specific; maybe you don’t even know. What are you hoping to obtain? A new job, a new relationship, a new home? Or, perhaps it is something more intangible. Perhaps it’s the search for meaning in your life right now.
Mars is also the archetypal male and represents the male in any male/female pairing. How is the male energy focused and what is it focused on? Keep this in mind through these steps of Mars as the male/female energy, which is often more Martian, gives way to Venus, during the apparent retreat of Mars. It’s okay to step back and receive now, rather than push forward and produce.
Mars is moving along, driving the car, sailing down the road in Sagittarius until April, when it begins to slow down and suddenly come to a complete halt.

Mars is still on the road, headed toward the goal, but now it’s temporarily stopped and reversing course. This is the phase where we define “What’s holding me back?” Take this time to review what it might be. Maybe the vehicle broke down. Maybe the road was washed out. Maybe we forgot something important and need to go back and retrieve it. Maybe we just forgot to say good-bye properly to what we left behind before we set out on our journey to a new land.

Mars goes back to Scorpio, re-visiting ground it has already covered a few months ago, during late February, early March. What is revealed to us now that was previously over-looked or not known? Use this time to “define the motive” behind what we’re setting out to achieve.

Phase 4: June 29-Aug 2: MARS DIRECT IN SCORPIO
Still in Scorpio but now in direct motion and moving forward once again, we may now experience true alchemy. In it’s own sign (Mars’ night sign) ask to bring forth the inner wisdom and get the confirmation or truth about the situation. An alchemical change will take place during this time as Mars in Scorpio is determined and delivers, no matter how tough it seems to keep up its strength, to keep up the fight.

We have just crossed the border now, into a new land. Proceed with caution, Mars is being told, as it passes the toll-gate of Saturn in Sagittarius and either pays the toll or is warned to slow down because there is a high price to pay here for speeding. In any case, still moving forward, Mars is now collecting the pieces it left behind in early March when it passed this way before.

New ground! Finally Mars gets to a new place on the road, with clear sailing ahead. By the third week in September, the journey that began in early March, now seems attainable. We may not arrive at the destination we originally intended on this journey, but after having made the repairs and experienced the alchemical changes that were necessary, we reach the the goal! As our little navigational devices tell us, “You have arrived.”

Tune into Arielle’s presentation: “The Lovers of Mount Olympus” for a lively discussion on planet/asteroid connections between two charts. Date: Sunday, May 15th
Time: 11 am PDT, 2 pm EDT (adjust for your timezone)
Information & Registration: https://geocosmic.org/education/webinars/
Lecture Description: What is the chemistry between two people as examined by the astrological chart? What is this relationship actually based on? Is it love or is it service? Is it business or is it pleasure? Is this a soul-mate relationship? Does it sizzle with passion and excitement? Is it a fleeting love-affair or a long-term, sustainable partnership? Using planet and asteroid connections, Arielle will outline the primary basis of the relationship between any two people.