June Astromusings -The Mars Factor, New Moon in Gemini

Mission to MarsThe fascination for the red planet Mars has long been in the collective unconscious of us Earthlings. There have been many missions to Mars some failures and some successes. Since 1996, Mars exploration has undergone a Renaissance, with data from four orbiters and four landed missions developing a revolutionary new view of Mars as an Earth-like world with a complex geologic history. Richard Branson-and-Virgin-GalacticThe British entrepreneur, Richard Branson,  described the future of American spaceflight, saying that people will eventually settle on Mars — and he hopes to be one of the first.  Branson isn’t alone in dreams of life on Mars. SpaceX is also developing a reusable orbital launch system that would make spaceflight affordable and permanent Mars settlement a reality.

Men are from Mars Women are from Venus book The book Men Are From Mars Women Are From Venus written Men are From Mars Women are from Venus Broadway showby relationship counsellor, John Gray Ph.D proved popular in the self help category. This publication led to further books on this topic, board games and a Broadway show of the same name etc. However, it could be argued that this is a bit too simplistic as Dr Carl Jung would describe the masculine principle, Mars, as the woman’s animus, and the feminine principle, Venus, as the man’s anima. Both sexes are capable of assertiveness, anger and aggression as well as being harmonious and loving. It may be that women are conditioned to be more placating and less assertive but it doesn’t necessarily preclude assertiveness or aggression in their nature.

Poor old Mars has had a bit of a bad press going back to Hellenistic astrology where Mars along with Saturn were classed as ‘malefics’ i.e. the baddies. However, it depends how one uses one’s Mars energy whether it is constructively or destructively channelled. I have been thinking a lot about Mars energy lately with the anger exploding on an individual and collective level. We have the collective anger that the Machiavellian Donald Trump is tapping into and exploiting in the US presidential primaries, the prevalence of mass shootings in the US, the recent election in the Philippines of President Rodrigo Duterte who supports killing journalists and criminals, the Paris riots over Hollande’s proposed workplace reforms, the collective outrage against the gang rape of the teenage girl in Brazil, not to mention the scourge of global terrorism and closer to home the ugly clashes between pro and anti refugees in Melbourne and the rage against the Baird government’s forced council mergers and the WestConnex etc.

It is no accident that Mars energy is currently so prevalent as Mars was conjunct the last powerful Full Moon in Sagittarius. It has now retrograded back into volatile Scorpio. Mars energy is quite complex and we only have to study the mythology of Mars and Aries to gain an insight into it. Aries glyphAries’ ruling planet Mars, or Greek Ares is the God of War. In its highest aspect Mars serves as the vehicle of new outpourings of energy into the material world, which, if used constructively can bring advancement to humanity.

Mars ancient glyph 2The ancient glyph for Mars, a circle with a cross on top, represents the sceptre, the symbol of authority and royalty. It is Venus turned on its head.Mars glyph The second glyph that is currently used  is an image of the shield and lance as well as depicting the erect phallus, a symbol of virility and procreative powers. In the Roman Pantheon Mars was accorded great honours. Mars was second only to Jupiter-Zeus, The Romans attributed many positive qualities to Mars. He was the great god of Nature, a giver of fertility, a protector of fields and herds, as well as a general inspiration to all new projects and ideas. It was in his honour that the Romans dedicated their first month, March, which coincides with the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere.

Positive Attribute of Mars
Let us examine the positive attributes of Mars. Apart from representing aggression and anger, Mars can represent nobility, courage, heroism, daring, invincibility, stamina, enterprise and physical courage as expressed by the exploits of ancient heroes such as Hercules, Theseus and Jason etc. Aries rules the head so it also symbolises ideals. In alchemy Mars is equated with sulphur and was often referred to as the wolf. Romulus & RemusThere is an interesting synchronicity with Mars being the father of the twins, Romulus and Remus who were suckled by a she-wolf and raised by shepherds and who grew up to found the city of Rome. In the alchemical context sulphur represents the aggressive instinct, the primal life force, the bestial aspect before it is subject to those transformative forces which will result in humanisation. Each of the planets represent a different stage of our personal development. In its raw force Mars represents the ‘terrible twos’ stage with tantrums like volcanic eruptions.

Donald Trump, Sandra Fluke, Megyn Kelly, Hillary ClintonThe Mars Factor in Donald Trumps’s natal chart
It is interesting to note that Mars is one of the most prominent planets in Donald Trump’s natal chart with Mars in fiery Leo placed in the first house of ego ruled by Aries. Trump is notorious for his dummy spits, arrogance and narcissistic behaviour so characterisic of unevolved fire sign energy.

In its destructive mode as expressed by Donald Trump, Mars energy can be crude, cruel, insensitive, petulant, combative, bullying, violent and egotistical. He has offended women, the disabled, Latinos, blacks, Muslims, American Indians, journalists, other politicians to name but a few. His behaviour is reminiscent of the schoolyard bully where the Mars energy runs rampant with absolutely no filter. He belittles his political opponents, taunting them with derogatory adjectives such as ‘little’ Marco for Marco Rubio and ‘crooked’ Hillary for Hillary Clinton and ‘Pocahontas’ for Democrat Elizabeth Warren. Trump would be what Liz Greene refers to on her section on Mars in the book The Inner Planets the ‘Berserker’ of Teutonic version of Mars, drunk on the wine of combat.

Trump rally violence in New MexicoWe have seen the recent riots at his rallies in New Mexico and Santiago. Trump’s use of Mars is divisive and polarising pitting one side against the other, threatening to build a wall between America and Mexico – a symbol of his own inner divisiveness.

French blockadeRiots in France against labour reforms
Meanwhile in France three months of student and union-led protests against Hollande’s Socialist government labour reforms have descended into violent clashes between demonstrators and police around the country. Unions have threatened to disrupt transport for the millions of visitors to the Euro 2016 football championship which kicks off across France on June 10. The contentious issue around these reforms will give employers more flexibility to hire and fire.

Protest against council mergersMeanwhile at home in Sydney about 200 protesters, angry at the NSW Government’s decision to merge Ashfield, Leichhardt and Marrickville councils into one entity, and the WestConnex project drowned out Inner West Council administrator Richard Pearson during the meeting at Petersham on Tuesday night.

Anti Iskam protest in MelbourneIn Melbourne last weekend there were ugly clashes between pro refugee and anti refugee protesters. Police used pepper spray to separate more than 300 angry protesters as anti-Islam and anti-racism groups clashed in the streets of Melbourne.

The 3 Hs – Hopelessness, Helplessness and Hostility
However we choose to express our anger individually or collectively, psychologists all talk about the 3 Hs – hopelessness, helplessness and hostility. There is a sense of powerlessness that often accompanies our angry outbursts. I know for myself I have Mars conjunct my natal Moon representing emotions in Gemini in the 6th house of work and health. I find that the I can blow off steam by venting my anger verbally. It might be in the form of yelling expletives at politicians on TV whose views and policies don’t concur with my own. Having Mars in the house of health I can suffer from inflammations, digestive or gynaecological problems. I find that practising martial arts provides a good outlet for expressing my Mars energy.

Martian Heroines in Mythology and History
Both mythology and history abound with Martian heroines. In mythology there are  the Amazons, Egyptian Sekhmet, Ishtar, Aphrodite, Pallas Athena etc. In history we have such

Boadicea

Queen Boadicea

feminine role models as Catherine the Great, Queen Elizabeth I, Joan of Arc and Boadicea to name but a few. As Liz Greene acknowledges the expression of Mars may be more basic, urgent and literal for men. Traditionally, the channelling of Mars energy for women, the ‘fairer sex’, has been limited and circumscribed. Women have to learn to channel the Mars energy constructively and even if they do so can still be labelled as ball breakers or bitches etc.

Psychologists refer to natural root aggression which endows us with the will to unfold more of who we are and grow into our full potential. Healthy aggression leads to independence, autonomy and individuality. It is more dangerous to suppress our drives and aggression as it can lead to passive aggression, sexual dysfunction, illnesses such as migraines and gastro-intestinal problems as well as depression.

The suppression of the natural Mars energy can play havoc in intimate relationships if one partner denies their Mars energy the other partner may act it out for them. There can be covert Mars energy showing up as the passive aggressive, the hen-pecked husband, the woman playing the role of victim or martyr. Liz Greene refers to the trio of closeness, dependency and anger when we are close to someone we are likely to project our unresolved infantile complexes onto them.

Rosie BattyDomestic and Family Violence
When we look at the alarming occurrence of family or domestic violence in Australia and across the world we can begin to see how vital it is for both men and women to have a healthy constructive outlet for their Mars energy. Statistics show two women are murdered by their partners every week in Australia. There are many initiatives set up now to rehabilitate and re-educate men on how to handle their anger. We all need to take responsibility for our anger. As Dr Carl Jung theorised we are often both repelled and fascinated by our own shadow contents. Many people are attracted to violent movies and video games. According to Jung people who commit murders, atrocities, rapes etc. are carrying out the collective rage. This may be unpalatable to some but it is worth giving it some consideration.

New Moon In Gemini
There is a New Moon in Gemini 4/5 June. It will be at 14 degrees 53 on 5 June at 12.59.31 am Sydney time. This New Moon will be conjunct Venus forming a grand mutable cross with Jupiter in Virgo, Neptune in Pisces and Saturn in Sagittarius. This could be chaotic energy making it difficult to handle. However, the grand trine in Earth with Jupiter, Pluto and Mercury should help to bring some stability and balance to the more chaotic energy of the grand mutable cross.

Sources
Alan Oken’s Complete Astrology by Alan Oken
The Inner Planets by Howard Sasportas and Liz Greene

Contact Anne for an astrological consultation
Mob: +61 (o)431 471 994
Email: Annefertiti@gmail.com

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Happy Birthday Cancerians and Leos, Retrograde Neptune and Retrograde Venus, Winter/Summer Solstice, Jupiter Venus Conjunction in Leo, New Horizons’ Images of Pluto

4 Cancer Happy Birthday to all the Cancerians who celebrate their birthdays between June 22 and July 23 and to all the Leos who celebrate their birthdays from July 23 to 23 August.

Design by Sue Robertson

Design by Sue Robertson

neptuneRetrograde Neptune,

Neptune, the planet of spirituality dreams and visions, turned retrograde ℞ on 12 June, at 9°49 Pisces, and will resume its direct motion on 18 November, with Neptune at 7°01 Pisces. Anyone with personal planets between 6 and 10 degrees mutable that is Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces will feel this retrograde most strongly. For the next five months, our perceptions around the elusive, spiritual and transpersonal realms will become more intensified. Retrograde Neptune vibrates to a higher music. When a planet turns retrograde the energy becomes more internalised so it is an ideal time to review our inner life. Keeping a journal, recording our dreams, going on a spiritual retreat are ideal ways to attune to our deepest yearnings. It is as if we have a more finely tuned antenna to the hidden side of life beyond the veil of the mundane world. It’s a time to fine tune our inner vision and a time of heightened sensitivity and attunement to our Souls. Neptune can bring tests for us – as it requires us to be discerning so that we are not susceptible to deception and delusion. Strongly Neptunian people, that is Pisceans or those with Moon or ascendant in Pisces need to protect their boundaries so that they don’t absorb the negativity of others.

Winter/Summer Solstice

Winter/Summer Solstice occurred on 21 June when we experience the shortest day in the Southern Hemisphere and the longest day in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Northern Hemisphere the summer solstice begins at 0 degrees Cancer while in the Southern Hemisphere it marks the winter solstice. The annual journey of the Sun through the sky from the vantage point of Earth is marked at four distinct points: the spring equinox, summer solstice, autumn equinox, and winter solstice, each at equidistant points of the year which forms the symbol of the cross within the “wheel of the year” with the sun at the centre. These four annual events marking the seasons have been celebrated since time immemorial by many different civilisations from the ancient Incas, Egyptians etc. as evidenced by the alignment of the Sun with their monuments such as the pyramids, Stonehenge etc.

Jupiter-Venus_30Jun2015_940x400

Jupiter Venus conjunction in Leo

New Horizons’ Flight past Pluto & Jupiter conjunct Venus

Pluto's heart

The Heart of Pluto

During the month of July we have had some spectacular celestial events such as the conjunction of Jupiter and Venus in Leo at 21 degrees on 1 July and the New Horizons’ dramatic flight past the dwarf planet Pluto on 14 July. New Horizons probe was programmed to gather a wealth of images and data as it sped past Pluto and its five

Charon-closeup

Charon-closeup

small moons, Charon, Styx, Nix, Hydra and Kerberos. It is interesting to note the symbolism behind Pluto and its Moons which conjure up images of the Underworld. Pluto or his Greek counterpart Hades were the gods of the Underworld ruling over earthquakes and volcanoes symbolise death and rebirth. Pluto abducted Persephone and took her to the Underworld to be his bride. The abduction of Persephone, the daughter of Demeter/Ceres, the Goddess of the Harvest caused her mother so much rage and grief that she stopped all growth until a deal was brokered between Zeus/Jupiter and Pluto where Persephone spent some of the time with her husband in the Underworld and some of the time with her mother in the Upperworld. Pluto’s Moon Charon is named after the ferryman who ferried the souls across the River Styx to the Underworld.

Charon the Ferryman

Charon the Ferryman

Nyx Goddess of the Night

Nyx Goddess of the Night

Nyx or Nix was the primordial Greek Goddess of the Night. A shadowy figure, Nyx stood at or near the beginning of creation, and mothered other personified deities such as Hypnos (Sleep) and Thantos (Death), with Erebus. In the Labour of Hercules related to Scorpio, Hercules has to slay the nine headed Hydra. At first he is unsuccessful as each time he lops off one of the heads another one grows in its place. It is only when he kneels down in the mud and lifts the creature to the sunlight that it withers and dies.

Hercules capturing Cerberus

Hercules capturing Cerberus

Kerberos was named after Cerberus the gigantic three-headed hound that guards

the gates to the Underworld. In the 12th and final labour of Hercules he has to capture and bring back Cerberus.

Greek Debt Crisis
It is interesting to see what events were occurring in the collective during this Pluto

Queue outside Bank in Athens

Queue outside Bank in Athens

phenomenon stirring up some primal energy as personified by Pluto and its Moons. We had the ‘do or die’ situation with Greek debt crisis with Greece negotiating with the troika of the IMF, the European Central Bank and the European Commission for Greece’s economic survival. There has been much criticism levelled at the troika for the crippling debt burden current Greek governments have been subjected to with recurrent austerity measures which have only exacerbated the situation causing massive unemployment and despair resulting in suicides.

Delegates at the Iran-Nuclear Deal

Delegates at the Iran-Nuclear Deal

Iran Nuclear Deal
Other Plutonian issues during this period on the world scene include the Iran Nuclear deal. On 14 July the very day New Horizons reached the closest Pluto in Vienna Iran and a group of six nations led by the United States reached a historic accord on Tuesday to significantly limit Tehran’s nuclear ability for more than a decade in return for lifting international oil and financial sanctions.

Gill Hicks & Policeman who rescued her

Gill Hicks & Policeman who rescued her

London Terrorist Attack Revisited
Another very Plutonian incident that was revisited was the 10th anniversary of the London terrorist attack which occurred on 7 July 2005. Four Corners program on Monday 13 July featured the victims and saviours of that traumatic event where innocent people were maimed and killed. Australian survivor, Gill Hicks who featured on the Four Corners program had an emotional reunion with Pc Andrew Maxwell, one of the Metropolitan Police officers who got Ms Hicks to safety by using a makeshift stretcher to carry her out of a Tube tunnel so she could receive emergency medical treatment.

The First Anniversary of The Downing of Malaysian Airlines M17

Families remember their loved ones

Families remember their loved ones

_sunflowercloseupThe 17th July marked the first anniversary of the Malaysian Airlines M17 disaster where families and friends and strangers remembered the victims in Australia and overseas. There were tributes of sunflowers which have become a special symbol for the families of the victims. Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. A few hours after departing Amsterdam on July 17, 2014, bound for Kuala Lumpur – with 283 passengers, 38 of them from Australia,  and its 15 crew was shot down while flying over territory that most were probably unaware was being torn apart by civil war.

Retrograde Venus

On 19 July Venus, the planet of love, moves into the sign of Virgo only to go retrograde on 25 July 7.30 pm AEST Sydney time and goes direct on 6 September, with erratic Uranus following suit going retrograde on the following day. Venus moves back into Leo on 31 July.

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VenusI recall during the Venus Retrograde period of 2012 we had a members’ forum at our astrological society, SARS in which various members shared their insights of the symbolism of Venus Retrograde. Venus is the goddess of love and war. In handling retrograde Venus, Cheryl shared astrologer, Stella Woods’ wisdom: “Symbolically, the Venus retrograde period makes us re-evaluate our deepest values. As Venus moves towards conjunction with the Sun in this cycle), we are challenged to let go of our old ideas of purity and ‘right behaviour’… Going within (to the underworld or unconscious) a battle takes place between our values (Venus) and our essential self defeats our outmoded values, we are forced to surrender and release them. We can be reborn with new values and a more honest heart.”
Venus will spend a lot longer in a sector of your chart than usual, and functioning more like an outer planet. The effects will be felt much stronger if you have natal planets in Venus’s path. If you are in a relationship, any unresolved issues are likely to come to a head at the actual retrograde when Venus hits the planet a second time, but they should be resolved by the time the Venus Direct reached the post-shadow degree.

Venus Synodic Cycle

Venus Pentagram

Venus Pentagram

What is also very significant is Venus’s synodic cycle which forms a pentagram in the sky. Every 8 years Venus will make another point of this magical 5 pointed star so it is worth keeping a record of what happened at the Venus retrograde of 8 years ago and see if there is a pattern. If you were born during a Venus retrograde then your birth synodic cycle should also reveal some valuable information to you.This area will be vulnerable again. Possible manifestations include infidelity, jealousy and hatred – the dark side of passionate and romantic love: a cold hard look at relationships of all kinds, often leading to break-ups but also to reconciliation and to new more honest expressions of love; understanding what is needed to maintain personal integrity and awareness of hidden needs or desires which can create emotional turmoil. It can also foster self-love and raise the vibration of love enabling one to express unconditional love where one has the capacity to accept a loved one without conditions or expectations.