don't give up!
the autumn astrological forecast
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|new moon||15:44' libra||october 9, 1999|
|jupiter square neptune||1:36' taurus/aquarius||october 10, 1999|
|neptune returns to direct motion||1:35' aquarius||october 13, 1999|
|uranus returns to direct motion||12:52' aquarius||october 22, 1999|
|jupiter re-enters aries||0:00' aries||october 22, 1999|
|sun opposes jupiter||29:56' libra/aries||october 23, 1999|
|sun enters scorpio||0:00' scorpio||october 23, 1999|
|full moon||1:00' scorpio/taurus||october 24, 1999|
|sun squares neptune||1:38' scorpio/aquarius||october 25, 1999|
|samhain celebration (hallowe'en)||-||october 31, 1999|
|mercury turns retrograde||1:04' sagittarius||november 4, 1999|
|sun squares uranus||12:57' scorpio/aquarius||november 5, 1999|
|sun opposes saturn||13:42' scorpio/taurus||november 6, 1999|
|true samhain (scorpio solar cross quarter||15:00' scorpio||november 7, 1999|
|new moon||15:17' scorpio||november 7, 1999|
|saturn squares uranus (second pass)||13:04' taurus/aquarius||november 14, 1999|
|sun enters sagittarius||0:00' sagittarius||november 22, 1999|
|full moon||0:32' sagittarius/gemini||november 23, 1999|
|mercury returns to direct motion||16:38' scorpio||november 24, 1999|
|mars conjoins neptune||02:10' aquarius||november 28, 1999|
|sun conjoins chiron||7:43' sagittarius||november 30, 1999|
|sun conjoins pluto||10:20' sagittarius||december 2, 1999|
|jupiter sesquiquadrate pluto (gibbous phase)||25:26' aries/10:26' sagittarius||december 4, 1999|
|new moon||15:22' sagittarius||december 7, 1999|
|mars squares saturn||11:14' aquarius/taurus||december 10, 1999|
|mars conjoins uranus||13:59' aquarius||december 14, 1999|
|jupiter returns to direct motion||25:02' aries||december 20, 1999|
|sun enters capricorn (winter solstice/yule)||0:00' capricorn||december 22, 1999|
|full moon||0:25' capricorn/cancer||december 22, 1999|
|chiron conjoins pluto||11:23' sagittarius||december 30, 1999|
all dates are based on pacific time.
st. augustine said it well: "a saint is a sinner who never gave up."(1) at no other time that i can think of is this thought more apropos than now. with the ball-busting planetary patterns of this time, it's important to remember not to give up. how can we withstand what we're dealing with? how can we endure? there are tools and perspectives that assist us in this process, and if we didn't face times like these, we wouldn't take the opportunity to sharpen our skills for dealing with adversity. such is human nature that we only do what is best for us when we are forced into it; and such is our divine nature that, if we are versed in the skills of dealing with adversity, we don't notice it.
in the i ching, it is called "dealing with times of no progress". ironically, learning to deal with "no progress" requires that we learn also to deal with progress. according to the i ching, dealing with times of progress or no progress is the same, no matter what happens. that is, we must put one foot in front of the other, dealing with whatever arises with balance and equanimity.
during a time of progress, success, or recognition, we may become lax and allow ourselves to be swept away by the enthusiasm of the moment. we may find ourselves having to backtrack once the wave that carries us has passed; we may lament our excesses or wish we had paid more attention or given more care to the opportunities that presented themselves at that time. in short, it is important to keep our balance, because we know that the wave will pass.
this is also true of times of no progress. during a time of no progress, we encounter obstacles that seems difficult. it is actually good that these obstacles come to the surface; even though it may seem like they occurred now, they have really always been there. it is times like these, when the resisting force reigns (see my past three or so forecasts), that they come to the surface. it is only when we encounter obdurate situations that our own stubbornly held attitudes and behavior patterns surface. it is only when we are faced with the challenge of no progress that we really get to see ourself at our worst and find our deepest reserves of discipline and inner strength. these times are "character building"--they lead us to express our higher qualities, but it is only through living with difficulty day after day, month after month, that we are able to hone the edge of our divine nature. we get to decide what we stand for, if we really want what we are pursuing, when it is so difficult.
"can i survive?" and "why is this happening to me?" (those self-pitying responses of the ego) deepen and change into "what do i stand for?" and "what is my purpose?", questions that penetrate to the depths of the soul and renew our focus and resolve. in this way, the planets that we are dealing with are rejuvenating: they do everything but force us to find the wellspring within us from whence arises our life force. this is what gives us strength, because it endures all, living eternally and identifying with what never dies. when we align our actions with this part of ourselves, we travel the path of the saint (or at least the sinner who never gives up).
when we feel stuck, it is because we think that we are in a time of no progress. it feels as though it will stretch on forever. inner tension and conflict arise. this leads us to try to find solutions, to search vainly for something to cling to, to convince ourselves that we're on the right path, to justify our actions up to this point. we don't want to feel that we have wasted our time or made a mistake.
we contribute to times of no progress through our own self-defeating attitudes. most of us have learned in our culture to dwell in a certain amount of negativity. many of our "background" thoughts are negative: "this'll never work. why bother?" sometimes it's just a vague feeling of discontent or hopelessness about our efforts that is never put into words in our mind. the times we are experiencing now give us the opportunity to ferret out all these forms of our own resistance. they seem harmless, but they prevent us from seeing the possibilities in any moment, the creativity that lies in every breath if we are open to it. in spite of the difficulties of these times, we are meant to learn that to let go of the negativity releases us from the stuck place.
perseverance and patience are virtues which few of us practice very well. in this culture where we are taught to constantly pursue instant gratification (in order to support the consumerist ethic of the free market--it's the underlying thought in every advertisement), quiet persistence and long-term thinking have unrecognized value. however, these are precisely the virtues which will see us through these times. not allowing ourselves to be pulled off course by the fears perpetrated by the media or the mediocrity that is expected of us. we do not have to adhere to the "norm"--in fact, to expect to do so is to doom ourselves to a lack of excellence. we can never achieve our heart's desire by accepting culturally endorsed thought patterns without examination, because they often place the collective above the individual (and sometimes the individual above the collective). individual and collective must be in balance in order for both to be healthy.
one of the implied questions of this search for greater depth and dedication to purpose--or at least one that, once answered, makes the quest easier--is "what do i value?" ultimately, this comes down to "what do i value in myself" and "what value do i place on what i find in myself". for most of us, our self-value is uneven, if we even think of it at all. yet it is the foundationstone of all that we do in life. we like some parts of ourselves, but not others, and we don't like any parts all too well; or we have been taught that it is wrong to like ourselves, and so we fight against self-value; we spent a lot of time in secret self-loathing; we come to accept the value which we perceive that the culture places on us by virtue of our rate of pay, our body shape, the praise we receive from others, or the latest news report on employability or crime in our neighborhood. when we accept this, we are taught to value "glamor" over intrinsic value. truly, the culture has "thrown a glamor" over us (glamor used to mean "spell") through the constant inundation that we receive from television. even if we don't watch television, the response that others have to our appearance teaches us what they have learned from that source.
if we get to a "bad spot" in our perspective, a time which feels like a crisis, we have lost our balance, our ability to put one foot in front of the other. because we cannot see things clearly, it is time to stop looking at the situation, even though we may be inclined to obsess about it. if we can pull ourselves out of that mode, that "energy bubble," we can eventually return to balance, and then we will be open to the right solution. it is also important to recognize that the times which feel awful to us are the times when we can go most deeply into our wound and find what it is that blocks us. the door isn't always that wide open!
we can benefit more fully from these times--gain the insights we need to flourish in them--if we cultivate our self-value. this means to see our own unique inner beauty, to be able to know what we're about and to live it to the fullest. some of us are meant to be on the cutting edge, to be an experimenter and try everything; others of us are meant to hang bank and observe. some of us are meant to express the fire of desire and burn their flame brightly, while others are meant to travel the careful path of the sage. whether your emotions flow like a river, or your cup of tea is a latte and an intellectual discussion, each of our ways of being is unique and has something vital to contribute in the world.
we will always be working on perfecting the expression of who we are, but we must come from the place of knowing what is beautiful within. once we have found our beauty, we can be at peace with ourself. once at peace, we can find the ways that we have covered this true self with pretense and falseness (however unintentionally). once we find our false self, we can begin to correct our mistaken attitudes with humility. this lays the foundation for breakthrough in times of no progress.
finding inner beauty is the task of taurus. with two of the heavy planets in taurus at this time, this task lies at the heart of our current and future successes. over the next three months, we get the chance to work through the big issues which underlie the surface events we have been dealing with for the past year. two of our yearly planetary cycles begin again, while two move into completion phases and two more are in the peak of their process. the planetary events of this quarter are not as tumultuous as those of the summer, and we expect worldly affairs to parallel the energetics of the planets. many of our experiences will arise out of those of the summer and may resolve those situations which still feel incomplete. other experiences will give us a sense of progress (or stuckness, depending on our inner state). either way, it is important to remember that whatever happens, it is just another step on the path.
october: our efforts pay off
the month opens without any more stresses than those we've endured during previous months. in fact, we may have some opportunities to relieve the pressure with a little ingenuity and lateral awareness. sure, we want the big storm that clears the air and brings final release, but this is not it--not yet. mild positive changes, open communications in relationships are the best we can hope for now.
the skies light up when the planets pick new partners on the 6th, so illuminating our experience and our awareness. the "layers" of our awareness start to intertwine like a celtic knot, threatening our orderly existence with chaos. the grist for the mill is new awareness we have about our own crisis in faith. we may feel like giving up; events near this date may trigger these feelings, whether consciously or unconsciously. at the same time, a doorway of opportunity opens to us, but we have to be able to detect it. in our "giving up" mode, we may not not be alert to its presence. .yet, if we can look at the big picture--what we have been dealing with since the beginning of the year with respect to our sense of freedom, ability to deal with shock, and openness to our path on the deepest level--we will be able to make this a very productive time. be patient with yourself, and give yourself the time to let your thoughts and feelings sort themselves out. this is not a time to act precipitously. when we feel a centeredness and confidence in our actions, this is the right path, the right decision. we are not then acting out of fear or any other unbalancing emotional state.
this shift of planetary thrust lasts through the 13th, when our anxieties will peak. that is, we won't know until after that whether we have been following the right path. even then, it will take some time for this certainty to evolve, but the rest of october will show us the merit of our resolve. give yourself time on the 9th for some pleasure, but don't overspend. we may want to end the waiting on a big purchase, when this may be the time for more modesty in our actions.
october 13th gives us back awareness of our faith and inner truth, although we may not feel it immediately. this date will tie in with the events near january 22nd, april 24th, may 6th, july 26th, and october 25th. because of the high level of activity surrounding the planet involved, neptune, there are many more dates when the theme you may detect now has been part of your process. although each of the slow-moving planets has a yearly cycle with which one of our developmental processes coincides, this year we can't talk about neptune without tying in mars, jupiter, mercury, and the eclipses. unraveling the influences of each of these is a daunting task, but suffice it to say that our idealism, faith and perseverance, dedication to spirituality, and sense of the truth have not been so challenged for many years. at this time, we may begin to feel as though the fog is lifting. the patterns of the past nine months are loosening their grip on our lives; we will still another go with neptune and jupiter (mar 16th), a brush with one more eclipse (jan 20th). however, this wave has crested, and new ones are in the works!
in the world and in our personal lives, this can also be a time when we shoot for the stars--we may try for those goals which should be realized because they are the right thing, even if they seem far away or impossible. the israeli peace process has been revived under this transit (and we hope this one is not far away and impossible!), as well as new efforts at stabilizing at-risk economies around the world. kosovar "peace" and repatriation is proceeding apace, and even some serbs are speaking out against milosevi.
sudden news or insights come up on the 14th or so, bringing back to light our issues with authority and control. we get the chance once again to examine our choices about freedom and autonomy versus controls exerted over us by others. it helps to remember that we nearly always have a choice, even if it may not appear to be so. that makes it easier to bear the yoke that others would place upon us.
the 17th and 18th may find us dealing with those long-buried issues in our relationships. no great turning points are likely to be encountered, although it is likely that what occurs will confirm what we had thought or feared might be true before.
as we approach the 22nd, our focus will be drawn to an issue we've been dealing with since early february (dates: feb. 1st, may 7th, may 21st, august 7th, nov. 5th). this is uranus, having to do with our urges toward freedom, expression of our true self, and the unexpected events that remind there is such a thing! in these complex times, other planets/events are also involved with uranus--saturn and the eclipses. of particular significance are events occurring around july 17th, august 11th, november 14th, feb. 5th, and may 13th (2000). the fact that so many of the dates are in the future means that we are in the "setting up" stages of how humans will manifest this energy. it is less internal, more volatile than the jupiter/neptune energy discussed earlier. some of the "promised" violence of bin laden and other terrorist and/or revolutionary forces may occur on or near these dates, most likely the eclipse (feb. 5th)--more on this below and in future forecasts.
when the sun enters scorpio on the 23rd, the challenges from the summer that we thought we had lain to rest boomerang back to us, but this time we may be able to work with them more effectively. for a month, we will be looking more deeply into everything--at no time is this more likely than when we feel the threat of winter (in the northern hemisphere), whether symbolic or real, at our door. it is a time to prepare for the seasonal change. in our culture, adjustments to seasonal changes may seem unimportant, muted by the sameness of most of our activities. however, there is a subtle inner process that takes place in addition to digging the warm clothes out of storage, putting snow tires on the car, and making sure we'll make it through christmas. (of course, the opposite shift occurs in some ways in the southern hemisphere.) people's business and household rhythms often shift at this time of year: some businesses gear up for great increases of activity, while others can put their books in mothballs and take a vacation. these times often give us a chance to look at the past year and examine our path, our life, to see if we have grown, if we can still make adjustments, if we can learn something for next year. even though we no longer make sure that the cellar is full of food for the cold months, we still prepare in many ways for the shift in weather and available light. the (in)famous celebration of samhain (hallowe'en) on the 31st is a ritualized way of recognizing and accommodating those needs. ritual satisfies the needs of the inner being so that it will allow the outer being to act unimpeded. when the inner being is unsatisfied, we may find our actions ineffective or unclear.
around the 22nd of october, an experience which we dealt with last year, but we thought was finished, comes back. this emerges over the months of november and december. the moral is, never say never! this has to do with a lesson in self-assertion, learning to let ourselves move unimpeded with what we feel at our core. for some of us, this will never be accomplished without effort, but for others of us, it is as natural as a sunrise. everyone will have the chance to step up now and make their mark. lost initiative can be recaptured, but sometimes it has to come in a new way. with the insight that we have added to our process over the past four months, we will surely have better insight into how to apply our intention and action. being alert to shifts in our perspective at this time will help us to mirror the planets' energies in the ways that we want. this is "intentional astrology", and it is the desire of all spiritual seekers (including pagans) to create through their own intention.
we receive support on the 24th--we'll feel better about things today, a feeling which is assisted by the full moon. those feelings may be quickly submerged in the confusion of the next couple of days. the month ends on a note of disquiet, but disquiet is better than commotion, which we've had plenty of this year! take your rest while you may.
november: never say never
after all the troubles we have had all year with feeling limited, especially by authority figures or long-term problems, we get a break, a chance to resolve these issues around the 4th. don't expect too much of this window of opportunity, for it may merely be suggestive, and you may be required to follow through on what you perceive at this time. the time is ripe for a retrospective anyway, since mercury turns retrograde, thus diverting our focus once again to the past. we may go deeply back, to as early as 1995. when mercury casts its gaze backward through the zodiac, we get to tie up loose ends, to finish what has been left undone. sometimes this comes as the flat in the ignored tire, but more frequently, it comes in the form of a recurrence of situations that we did not have the time, awareness, wisdom, etc. to deal with the first time around. this time, it occurs in not too troubling an area--it's away from the "hornet's nest" of planets that we have been coping with this year. often people notice that life slows down during the few days around the time of mercury's station--the time when it stops before changing direction. naturally, there are two stations for each retrograde.
in fact, a couple of events occur which are unrelated to mercury's action occur on the 5th and 6th, and they are tied in to the puzzle pattern of dilemmas we have faced this year. the first gives us a chance to tie up loose ends related to events we experienced on or around february 1st, may 7th and 21st, august 7th-11th, and october 22nd. yes, this has been at the very heart of this year's greatest challenges, but rising to the challenge and taking a reasonable risk leads (has led) to freedom. now we get to put the finishing touches on this year's accomplishments, to look back and judge our actions; then we can look forward, because there's always next year's cycle.
at virtually the same time, we reach the culmination point in a related cycle--that having to do with structure, limitation, and long-term gain. we get to check in and see how we're doing on the tasks that we took on near the end of april. what did we do then: did we hunker down for the long haul and determine to stick with it? did we decide to take a safer path than we'd been on? no one answer is right for everyone. the key is to find the way that feels right for each of us, and to check in periodically to see if we need to make any adjustments. events and inner awareness may have inclined us to examine our trajectory around august 9th and 29th so far this year.
we still get our rest period on the new moon of the 7th, whether we want it or not. we may feel some vague disquieting feelings about money, partnership, and the sureness of our position in life now, but it is not the time to do anything about them, since we are not likely to feel that any action is called for or have a sense of clarity about what is going on. allow yourself to dream and enjoy during this brief respite. this is also the time of the true solar cross-quarter, when we mark the passing of the half-season, for which the samhain celebration was originally created. this is a particularly benign time to focus on what plans you have for the winter months, the darkness that is descending upon us. darkness is not negative, though; it gives us rest, turns us inward. take advantage of the seasonal variations in your routines of life, and you potentiate your experiences coming during the times of light in the year ahead.
on the 14th, we get to work on integrating the energies which were activated on the 5th and 6th (discussed above.). we've actually been working on it all year, perhaps without knowing it, and we will continue to do so through the first third of next year. this is the inevitable balance between newness and tradition, change and stability, revolution and the status quo. the interaction of these forces keeps things alive and as such is healthy. however, they don't blend well by their nature, but we can learn to blend them by being flexible and open to newness. the old way of doing things can be very comfortable and comforting, but we stagnate if we do not allow growth and change to occur in and around us.
the planets are mellow for a change through the 20th. the planets of the 21st merely excite action, adding exhilaration to the day's football (and other) games. this is the highlight of the week during a year when boredom looks good. there will be just enough activity on the 24th's full moon to keep us from snoring through the next few days. it is an excellent opportunity for communicating, perhaps in non-verbal ways.
romance and healing will color our perspective as november comes to a close. as the sun slides into sagittarius, our hope and idealism rises refreshed, as if the difficulties of the past never existed. relax and enjoy!
on the last day of the month, the sun makes its conjunction with chiron, the wounded healer. wounding and healing are both doorways to our true nature, that we are all one. this begins a new cycle of liberation from the known physical world into other dimensions which are more real than what we see. this year's cycle is potentiated by chiron's interaction with pluto. it means that we have access to the deepest levels of our wound, the core wound. while clearing it involves pain, it is the pain of not knowing who we really are. releasing the pain leads to joy.
december: opening to the wound
december begins with a bang: a new cycle starts on the 2nd, one which addresses things that we need to change in a big way. that very thing that we've been hanging on to for dear life is probably what has to go, but if the planet that "oversees" this type of phenomenon, pluto, is not dialing your number, you won't be able to make the changes yet. and if your number is up, you will have a hard time resisting the changes. sometimes our efforts to affect what happens to us only make it more difficult; the key to a successful pluto transit is letting go, riding the wave to see where it takes us. dates to look forward to with respect to this cycle are march 2nd and 15th (2000), june 1st, august 20th, and september 2nd. as mentioned above, we can look forward to added depth in our process, and if any of us have been affected by pluto over the past five years, we will be once again under its influence this coming year. it is time to set your sights high, for much can be accomplished in the year to come.
after the 2nd, we once again get to find our feet. we'll have the energy to really put ourselves into our efforts during this time. the new moon falls on the 7th and gives inward inspiration as it lends its serenity to our lives. we will experience a recurrent of what was happening for us in early november on the 10th through the 14th, but the raging lion of before has become more a playful kitten by now--there's just not enough to get excited about. however, there is enough to work with, and we could damage our development if we act rashly at this time.
the millennium approaches, and we really begin to feel it after the 15th. it's like a really scarey roller coaster ride. once you're in the car and its moving, you can scarcely get out. so now we're here, we're going to go through it, and we'll get to learn if all the fear about y2k is real. (it isn't.) it's a time to enjoy, and drink your apple juice if the champagne runs out. life is too short to make this an issue.
the full moon comes on the 22nd as the sun enters capricorn and brings the return of the llight that the yule celebration is meant to commemorate. there's nothing like a fresh start to stir our enthusiasm, and this is when "true new year" occurs. so, if you want to get the edge on the y2k'ers, celebrate yule in all its traditional glory, and you'll be off to a fine start for the new millennium!
there's not much more to say about the rest of 1999. after a year of challenge through the resisting/stabilizing force, we know more about where we stand, what we stand for, and where we want to go. our resolve is firm, our direction unwavering. we have seen the miraculous and the devastating. we have seen the ordinary become unbelievable. we have needed to find the motivation to discipline ourselves, and now our discipline is second nature. these are the fruits of the resisting force--awesome indeed! although the wave has crested (in august), there will be another (lesser) wave next year, just as there will be other waves in the future. remember that planetary waves wash over us periodically, all the time. just as we have survived those of the past, we shall come through these times--stronger, renewed, more alive. allow yourself to feel the power conferred upon you by the grace of the god/dess and celebrate life!
terry lamb is an astrologer, healer, mother of two wonderful boys, and the author of the book, born to be together: relationship, astrology, & the soul. she is thoroughly dedicated to supporting others through a full range of personal and business services as an astrologer and a variety of techniques as an energetic healer. this column arises out of the convergence of her training in both fields. she can be reached for classes, bookings and appointments (locally or long-distance) at 619-589-1774 or via email.
1. i would like to thank russell rowe for mentioning this quote.
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