The Alchemists, Full Moons and Mercury & Venus in New Territory

“Even my best friends
Even my best friends
They don’t know
That my job is turning lead into gold.

Up in the morning
Up in the morning on the road
My job is searching for
The Philosopher’s Stone.” Van Morrison

So much of the ability to move freely forward in life has to do with the ability to transform perceptions of the past. The ancient alchemists spoke of this transformational process symbolically in their striving to turn lead into gold. In other words to change something heavy and burdensome into something of great value. Gold symbolizes heart warmth as well and often this process has to do with integrating more love, compassion and forgiveness into the old perception in order to understand it more deeply and release it in the old form.

This kind of process can be ongoing in nature but there are particularly auspicious times indicated by the movement of the celestial bodies in anyone’s chart. Full Moons are astrologically one of the times these crossroads can present themselves – particularly when a full moon occurs around twenty years after a significant event in your life. At that time the Moon will wax full at the same degree and sign as twenty years prior. If memories of that time or event occur to you or if someone enters your life who triggers those memories in some form, it could indicate that this is happening in your chart. The reason for the re-occurence is to offer another level of release of the original event in its old form and move forward in a more empowered, wiser way.

Today’s Full Moon at at 11 degrees of  Taurus. This Full Moon cycle will be in effect through the Full Moon on Dec 3rd.

This week both Mercury and Venus change signs. Mercury will ingress into Sagittarius and Venus into Scorpio. This placement of Mercury offers the opportunity to broaden perspective and brings in new info. Venus is Scorpio deepens passion and increases intensity in relationship. I have a good friend, a therapist in Ireland who used to say,”The two biggest issues in any relationship are sex and money.” This duo can be on the table now as well as the desire to break free of restrictions in relationship, the desire to move relationships in a more innovative direction and love at first sight occurrences.

The Sabian symbols for Mercury and Venus at this time are,” The ocean covered with white caps” and “A sight- seeing bus filled with tourists.”

Sabian symbols from Lynda Hill

Threshold Times

“The obstacles along the way sometimes
might feel so tremendous,
There are guides and spirits all along the way
Who will befriend us. ” Van Morrison

“Let us be silent that we may hear the whispers of the gods.” Emerson

The author Clare Martin has described the Lunar Nodes in the astrology chart as representing, “a doorway or magical threshold between this and other worlds.”

Another way to describe this is “meetings at the edge.” The author Stephen Levine, in his book by that title, evolved contemporary thinking about the path of being with someone who is dying. He described the kind of intimacy  that can develop between people when one of them is preparing to transition. It is a very inspired work.

Cycles of birth and death accompany us throughout our lives as we move forward and leave things behind.  “Meetings at the edge” can also be present at threshold times – when we might feel stuck but are actually at a crossroad waiting for information or direction. People may show up or experiences occur which clarify or affirm our way forward. It can be something that’s read in a passage of book, heard on a train from a stranger three seats back or can come in a dream or moment of inspiration and recognition.

In general the Nodes in an astrology chart describe which parts of ourselves we need to work on and evolve during this lifetime.

The Lunar Nodes are constantly in motion while the birth chart is stationary and captures a moment in time. This means that throughout time you are likely to encounter guidance in the sphere of life being targeted by transiting Nodes. For example if the Nodes are transiting the first and seventh houses, guidance can come through relationships that bring up the question of the balance between our identity and who we are  in partnership with others. Someone can show up at a time like this and clarify or evolve who we are in this area through their interaction with us.

The people who come into our lives at these times – in one form or another -put us in touch with a missing piece of the puzzle. They may be strangers or liminal people – people who come into our lives to transmit information or contribute to an experience that sets us on our way. Often they do not stay.

In the sixth and twelfth houses guidance can come through experiences in the daily routine, health, work and from the realm of dreams, ancestors and spirit guides. For example is a health related challenge asking us to change our daily life’s routine or our relationship to the Mysteries? Is work pushing us in another direction? Are the anscestors calling us to live out some side of the anscestral lines that they were not able to in their time and place?

Alot of people are looking for direction now- in this topsy turvy time we are living in. The Lunar Nodes can be helpful in this realm.


Mercury and the Lunar Nodes

“Behind our existence lies something else that becomes accessible to us only by shaking off the world.” Arthur Schopenhauer

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find that it is hitched to everything else in the universe.” John Muir

This week Mercury aligns with the Lunar Nodes which govern destiny and  life path. The Lunar Nodes are indicators of incarnational purpose or life mission in anyone’s birth chart.

Proactively, this alignment provides a good time to be open to information that may lead down another path towards resolving long standing or  challenging areas of your life. Best to put customary beliefs and responses aside for the time being and remain open to options.

It bodes well to raise awareness and provide quiet time when intuitive messages can be heard or come through.

One of the Sabian symbols for this alignment is, “A carrier pigeon fulfilling its mission.” Throughout time and in many metaphysical systems, birds have symbolized the arrival of messages. The four Pages in the Tarot deck symbolize this as well.

An astrologer or Tarot Card reader should be a trusted ally on your life’s path.


Jupiter, The Magi and This Week’s Astrology

“Molnar believes that the wise men were, in fact, very wise and mathematically-adept astrologers. They also knew about the Old Testament prophecy that a new king would be born of the family of David. Most likely, they had been watching the heavens for years, waiting for alignments that would foretell the birth of this king. When they identified a powerful set of astrological portents, they decided the time was right to set out to find the prophesied leader.” David A Weintraub 

“All wisdom is given to us on loan.” Thomas Aquinas

Over the years there has been a considerable amount of speculation in both the astrological and astronomical communities about which planetary alignment the Wise Men or Magi of old were following in order to find a newly born king and bestow gifts upon him. There is always one constant in the speculations – whether it was Jupiter /Venus or Jupiter /Saturn or others, the planet Jupiter is always involved.

Jupiter the planet of wisdom, hope, expansion, benevolence and generosity is making powerful alignments in the sky this week. This gives the opportunity to expand understanding, vision and compassion. It can be a very growth oriented time and can open doors of opporuntity for  progress and transformation in partnership and relationship. Do proceed thoughtfully and carefully though, with any endeavors like this as there is powerful energy about with the sign of Scorpio involved.

One of the Sabian symbols for this time is,”Neighbors help in a house-raising party in a small village.’

New Moon in Libra Opposite Uranus

“We die with the same chart we were born with, so the question is, what if anything, happened? Have we lived our life or has life lived us? Jung’s conviction that the psyche has an inherent urge towards wholeness and integration, urges us to jump onto the wheel of fortune, to grapple and engage fully with all the struggles and joys, and to live our lives to the full. Otherwise, as Gurdjieff said, “the future will be the same as the past- how could it be otherwise?” Clare Martin

“if you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want your children to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.” Albert Einstein

In the ancient Celtic tale of the Selkie Woman, there was one day of the year when a seal would shed her skin and become human. She would could be seen sitting on the rocks by the shore singing in the sunshine. One year a fisherman saw the Selkie Woman and instantly fell in love with her. He found her sealskin where she had hidden it, and took it-  making it impossible for her return to the sea and making it inevitable that she live out her human side as long as he had it in his possession. He took her home and made her his wife. He was not unkind to her but his actions separated her from her home and children in the sea which she longed for.

In our time the loss of the seal skin is akin to the loss or fragmentation of the True Self due to over accomodation to parental, ancestral, cultural and religious influences. Much of the evolutionary journey towards recapturing wholeness- like the Selkie getting her skin back –  has to do with freeing the soul from undesired influences and living a more authentic life in terms of personal authenticity and  personal evolution.

The New Moon in Libra on Thursday is a good time to respond to old problems in a new, more innovative way as Uranus – the planet of suprises and sudden occurences – opposes the Sun and Moon. Mercury is now in Scorpio providing depth and insight in looking at your relationships with others, who you are in this realm and who you aspire to become.

Jupiter is in Scorpio too, providing a broader perspective on where  personal initiatives may have become stalled out. This can help move foward in a freer,  less encumbered way by developing a different strategy.

Venus just entered Libra – bringing a good time to look at the kind of relationships you have and what kind of relationships you would like. It is a good time to brainstorm ways to evolve relationships in a way that is more authentic. As Eric Francis wrote,” It’s a good time to look at where the relationships you are involved in now started.” Fairness and diplomacy are always key elements in moving things forward with the sign of Libra involved. You just need to watch for overly accomodating the needs of others and losing the sense of yourself in the process.

One of the  Sabian symbols for this New Moon is, “An eagle and a large white dove turning constantly into each other” and another is.” A man alone in deep gloom. Unnoticed, angels are coming to his aid.”

Sabian symbols from Lynda Hill.


Plato and the the Currently Active Cancer/Capricorn Axis

“For Plato the universe was a single, living, rhythmic organism subject to the two opposing principles of strife and love, and it was the tension between these two principles which created life itself. The number 36 was the key number of change, and the universe breathed in for 36,000 years during which there was an increase of Strife and breathed out for 36,000 years during which there was an increase of  Love, with each complete cycle being 72,000 years long. Like the Assyrians before him, Plato believed that the crisis or turning points in these cycles coincided with powerful conjunctions occuring on the Cancer/Capricorn axis”  (which has been very active for several years in our time).”It was humanity’s task to align and harmonize with these great rhythms, to help the universe balance itself.” Clare Martin

Jupiter Enters Scorpio

“Our ancestors acknowledged doubt while practicing faith. We moderns are drawn to faith while practicing doubt.” Adam Gopnick

“Faith is not merely a way of knowing, it is also a way of participating.” Robert Ellwood.

Jupiter the planet of abundance, of faith, hope and optimism just moved into the sign of Scorpio – the sign of the Mysteries, of life, death and transformation. Jupiter will travel through the sign of Scorpio for the next year bringing opportunities for expansion and growth in the area of life indicated by the house with Scorpio on the cusp in your astrology chart.

This transit provides a good time in general to expand and deepen your belief system and to explore the Mysteries. The sign of Scorpio has a profound nature to it. It is wise to explore shadow issues under this influence as well.

Sometimes when I meet someone who looks like the old fashioned images of  a benevolent Santa Claus – with his joviality – it reminds me of Jupiter. Jupiter rules good times – when hope and optimism prevail. Santa Claus comes shortly after the Winter Solstice and what Robert Frost called,”The darkest evening of the year.”

In mythology Jupiter loved pleasure and good times and  this often led to trouble with his more traditional wife, Juno.

It’s a good time to enjoy life while keeping equilibrium in mind.

In describing his system for understanding the great cycles of time, Plato believed that at times of challenge on the planet, there is an opportunity for humanity to help the universe balance itself. Hope and optimism play a significant part in this.

The Sabian symbol for the ingress  of Jupiter into Scorpio is,” A broken bottle of spilled perfume.”

Sabian symbol from Lynda Hill



Thursday’s Full Moon in Aries

“Anger is loaded with information and energy…We cannot let our fear of anger to deflect us nor seduce us into settling for anything less than the hard work of excavating honesty.” Audre Lorde

The Harvest Moon is full on Thursday the 5th of October at 12 degrees of Aries. The pressure cooker energy continues under this influence and in a proactive way it provides good timing to form a more healthy relationship to anger.

With the Sun in Libra conjunct Vesta the focus is on how you communicate and relate to others. It is a good time to look at unprocessed anger -and the effect it has on relationships. It is wise to factor in that we are still under the influence of the Saturn/Chiron square which brings up issues of core wounding. This applies personally to each of us as individuals, it applies to relationships and it applies to the planet and the environment – being  reflected in the many painful events we see around us.

Recently the astrologer and writer, Amanda Painter suggested that when people lash out at you, it is wise to consider that it comes from the place of their own personal wounding.

The Moon is squaring Pluto at the time of the Full Moon indicating there is a higher level of self mastery that can be attained with the willingness to work with and tranform these dynamics.

It is wise now to provide healthy outlets for excess energy and anger and to defuse situations rather than letting them get out of control – which will be more likely now. It’s wise to remember that anger can cause more damage than anticipated.

Lynda Hill’s  Sabian symbol for this time is, ” A bomb which failed to explode is now safely hidden from discovery” and she defines it this way, “This Symbol shows that often in one’s life explosive elements need discharging. Pressure cooker energy needs to be released, but it often needs to be done slowly and carefully. By keeping a sense of control, one can handle situations, elements or people without things getting out of hand. Be an example to others of how calmness and quiet can take the charge out of things.”

An astrologer or Tarot card reader should be a trusted ally on your life’s path.


This Week’s Astrology

“Anyone can become angry- that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose in the right way – this is not always easy.” Aristotle

“When anger arises, think of the consequences.” Confucius

It is wise to factor in restorative down time this week as there are some testy aspects moving towards the Pluto station and the exact opposition of Jupiter and Uranus at the end of the week. This is pressure cooker energy.

Mercury is squaring Saturn which can slow things down and create obstacles. Mercury is in Virgo now and with Saturn in tow, it can be overly focused on the details. it’s best to sidestep being overly critical or judgemental.

Mercury will also make an awkward aspect to Eris and  – the asteroid of conflict and discord. Eris is correlated with injustices inflicted on the Feminine (in both men and women)  throughout  time that have resulted in lack of empowerment and repression. Eris stirs up discord to release what has been repressed. This can be the motive behind a lot of the anger this week.

It is good to make an effort to work with anger or irritation this week and to pause and get clear on exactly what is causing trouble and the best way to deal with it. The tendency to lash out is likely to be strong. It is also wise to remember we are in a phase of rapid evolution on the planet and  have the opportunity to build a new model – individually and collectively -for a better future.

Jupiter will exactly oppose Uranus this week which can be a disruptive force also.  But if the energy is worked with consciously there can be sudden and surprising breakthroughs about relationships with others and an opportunity to find new and more just and comfortable ways to relate. The tendency towards anger can be revealing in this area. Anger can be a good clarifying and motivating force if implemented in the right way and not weaponized.

There can also be a strong drive for freedom this week  – wise to consider this in the context of relationships with others as well with Jupiter in Libra.

With Pluto’s  station and direct motion there can be power and momentum for moving forward in a more authentic and actualized way if you are not resisting change.

One of the Sabian symbols for this time is,”Through imagination, a lost opportunity is regained.” Another is, “The Music of the spheres.”

Sabian symbols by Lynda Hill

The Autumn Equinox and Michaelmas

“We live in a time when the greatest form of courage is to act as if our lives made a difference.” William Sullivan

“Courage is a willingness to act from the heart, to let your heart lead the way, not knowing what will be required of you next and if you can do it.” Jean Shinoda Bolen

Today is the Autumn Equinox which marks the time when all the inhabitants of our small planet experience an equal amount of day and night. The Equinox also marks the time of the Sun’s ingress into Libra – the sign of equilibrium and duality.

At time of the Equinox Mercury is in an exact trine to Pluto.  This combination in seen often in the charts of private investigators and gives the ability to see below appearances and understand, “what really is going on.” As the chart for the Equinox is said to speak of the time until the Winter Solstice, it is wise to factor in this kind of perception into your thinking and call upon it as necessary.

The time around the Equinox bodes well for looking back at events of the last season and charting your course for the upcoming one.

Following soon after the Equinox comes the Feast of Michelmas – an ancient Celtic festival – which celebrates one of the quarter days of the year. These festivals in general are meant to bring us more closely in touch with the magic of the seasons, the rhythms of the earth and the earth’s connection to the cosmos.

Michelmas celebrates the passage of the earth through the late summer meteor showers and the time when the northern hemisphere begins to tilt away from the sun.

In many Michelmas celebrations a play is performed about how the lowly peasant George slays a dragon. George was able to face great odds and persevere with great courage due to the help and guidance of the Archangel, Michael.

The celebration of Michaelmas is a reminder to cultivate courage for the sometimes daunting tasks we all face. And to rekindle the inner fire as we move towards the darkness of the season.