Thursday, April 8, 2010

Astrological Events for April,by Michelle Procter

Cosmic Forecast, April 2010

April started with Pluto, planet of depth transformation, shifting Retrograde on the 7th. This feels like a wave pulling back to sea where it builds intensity before crashing to the shore at a later stage. In mid-September when Pluto goes Direct again, the wave comes to shore and transformation takes place. In the meantime, deep parts of ourselves mull over and address our current life circumstances. In our own quiet, private ways we can strengthen our weak points. It's a bit like someone joining a gym in secret now and then in September revealing an amazing new look. Between now and September, Pluto helps us face facts and fix problems behind the scenes.

On the topic of Retrograde planets, Saturn has been Retro since January and on 8 April, takes a further step into the past when, still Retrograde, it shifts into Virgo. Over the next few months, we might find ourselves working through, as if in slow-motion, some of the themes that were present in our lives in October. Saturn was in a rush back then to get out of Virgo into Libra. But now Saturn is backtracking over the last degrees of Virgo, helping us attend to overlooked details. Perhaps there was something quite meaningful in the months around October that we rushed past in a bid to end one thing and move onto another, in the fast way that Saturn rushed out of Virgo and into Libra. Sometimes we're so eager for the new that we forget to appreciate what's happening in the now. We might recover the seed of a happy event that we can nourish and develop further or we might discover the cause of a frustrating situation playing out now. Over the next few months this gets sorted out so that from late July we can move forward comfortably when Saturn finally settles again into Libra.

Retrograde planets seem to be all the rage this month! Mercury goes Retrograde on 18 April, joining both Pluto and Saturn in helping us integrate and process the past few months. This could ignite feelings of frustration because we've had Mars Retro for a few months, and even though Mars is now Direct, it's moving slowly. By the end of April, Mars picks up speed but it won't be until 17 May that it's finally out of the old energy.

So no matter which way we look at it, April is a month for taking stock and becoming more inwardly focussed. This matches the energy of Autumn (in the Southern Hemisphere). Generally we feel the need to become more internal when there are so many planets Retrograde.

Mercury doesn't go Direct until the middle of May, so throughout April while Mercury is Retro it's important to double-check all communications. This includes everything from how computers connect (e.g. across the internet) to how we communicate with others. Telecommunications, technology and public transport can all go a bit haywire under Mercury Retro. Be sure to make back ups and tend to important documents before Mercury goes Retro. Many a long hour has been lost under the influence of Mercury Retro due to glitches or misunderstandings, and then trying to sort them out. Generally we're far better off taking things slowly in the first place to save drama and chaos, then recovery time later. Under Mercury Retro we might feel rushed into having to close a deal or make a decision. For example, we might cave in to a door-to-door salesperson for fear of missing a good deal, only later to discover we would've been better off waiting. 'Stalling' is often the best bet when we feel unsure or pressured. Especially as Mercury is in Taurus, a perfect zodiac sign for going slowly.

When planets are Retrograde, it's possible to become incredibly focussed and not thrown off course by distractions. We can achieve what's important under the intensity of Retrograde energies but only when we use our energy to do what our core selves most want. When so many planets are Retro the cosmic flow is in opposition to the fast-paced tempo of the 21st century. Modern-day 'clock time' pressures us to move quickly and stay on top of things so that we're up to the minute, informed and aware in worldly terms. But the planets this month are encouraging us to be 'backward'. To slow down, savour each moment, breathe more deeply, rest, sleep, hibernate, stretch, yawn and let our deepest inner voice speak. This month we are encouraged to not perform to unreasonable time demands and to instead find our own inner rhythm and sync it with the steady calm pace of the Retrograde planets.

On 14 April, the New Moon in Aries offers a fresh burst of energy. Aries is all about self-actualisation, initiative, action, enthusiasm and courage. This is a passionate New Moon energy, energising us to go out after what we want. Yet with so many planets retrograde, our actions might not yield immediate results. Don't be put off by the Retrograde planets otherwise the flipside of Aries might erupt - sudden outbursts from ourselves or others over built frustration.

Two days to be especially mindful of in terms of frustration or massive energy output are 22nd and 23rd April when Mars and the Moon travel together. There is so much energy building in each of us, but so many apparent blocks to moving forward with the Retrograde planets, that we might 'burst a blood vessel' or encounter others who are boiling over on these dates. If you are fortunate enough to be in circumstances where you're not feeling limited or thwarted in general, then these are likely to be incredibly focussed, satisfying and productive days.

On 28 April, the Full Moon in Scorpio brings another energy burst. Here Mars is also evident as Mars rules both Aries and Scorpio. So the April New Moon and Full Moon are both Mars affected. To top that off, at the time of this Scorpio Full Moon, Mars makes a square alignment to the Sun and the Moon. This could be explosive. When there's a Full Moon in Scorpio, anything that has been kept under wraps is likely to make itself known. Full Moons reveal what's going on. These are days when we might have major breakthroughs or breakdowns. There is so much energy being released under this Full Moon that it's almost like a bomb going off. Throughout April it's worth keeping an eye out for 'ticking bombs' and dealing with them before they explode at the end of the month.

From mid to end of April, Saturn and Uranus have their fourth clash, culminating in an exact stand off on 27 April, the day before the Scorpio Full Moon. These two started fighting it out in November 2008. And really all of April feels like this energy. Saturn in general has a retrograde feel to it (limitation, caution, holding back), whereas Uranus has an energised Mars feel to it (action, impulse, bravado). Here there's a tug of war between the forces within us for caution and change. One part of ourselves holds us back, just like the Retro planets all month, but another part of ourselves wants liberation NOW! We're being encouraged to find a way to juggle how to be sensible (Saturn) with how to be groundbreaking (Uranus).

All of this is in preparation for what's to come at the end of May, when the rebellious change planet Uranus moves into Aries - the start of a whole new era. Throughout April, the Retrograde planets help us gather our resources, conserve our energy and put ourselves through some resilience training. They help us not 'sweat the small stuff', but instead understand what really is important to us and to put our energy into that. To use a "Star Wars" metaphor, it's almost as if in April we are Jedis in training, but at the New Moon (14 April), Full Moon (28 April), Saturn-Uranus opposition (27 April) and two Mars-Moon days (22 & 23 April) we rise to the challenge of being Jedi masters. April offers the opportunity to really notice what we want changed in our lives and to make plans for it so that we can ride Uranus's wave of change with joy after May and not get distracted by trying to change things that really don't matter that much to us.

Fortunately on 20 April, Chiron moves into Pisces, which brings to mind the image of a glorious rainbow after a thunderstorm. Chiron was in Aquarius for 5 years and now moves into new territory in Pisces. With Chiron, the wounded-healer planet, in Pisces we are more easily 'healed' or 'wounded' by others' actions towards us or vice versa. An overload of Mars, Uranus or Aries energy can bring selfishness. Chiron moves into gentle, compassionate, loving Pisces before Uranus enters fiery, warrior-like Aries at the end of May. We therefore have a month of Chiron bringing us into our hearts before the change energy really starts to kick in. Chiron in Pisces shows us how to follow our own dreams while still being heartful toward others. In the second half of April if we, or others, get aggressive with all the Mars energy around, Chiron will be there for us like the rainbow after the storm. What we learn this month about making a stand for heartfulness, even when we must move forward on individual trajectories, will be good practice for the months ahead. I've planned the Heart Chakra workshop on Sunday 2 May to coincide with this time. Chiron is associated with the Heart Chakra.

April is the perfect month to take special notice of what our inner selves are urging us towards (possibly new directions; possibly making more time for the paths we are already on) and to prepare for the change energy that builds momentum late May.

Radiant Living
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