Reflect During the Retrograde 

For the week of September 16-22, 2009.

Tension, frustration, and overload sweep through emotional bodies this week, and as these mighty currents coalesce with personal and collective situations, emotional bodies are sure to move into overload and overwhelm. And it isn't likely anyone is going to be "over it" anytime soon. You can say you're letting go, but that doesn't actually mean you are releasing the stress and strain or practicing non-attachment, skillfully. It's going to take concentrated effort and expanded awareness to override the intensity, internal or external. It will also take determination to find and maintain a peaceful stance that will do no harm. Rather than drowning in a sea of reactions, devote time and energy to figuring out how to breathe your way to conscious and considerate responses.

The first source of stress is Mercury Retrograde — and this one is packed with snafus, mechanical, technical, and communicational. (Yes, I know there is no such word, but, hey, Mercury rules language, so I guess that means I can make up a retrograde word.) Retrogrades are never a good time to update or install software, or change your voicemail message. It also wrecks havoc with contracts, negotiations, and traffic. (And today, as I write this, especially traffic.) Terrible retrogrades demand drastic measures, so don't hesitate to take your patience pills. (Just don't resort to heroin — the retrograde will be over by September 29.) Remember, Mercury Retrograde slows the pace of daily life, which should create opportunities to reflect and review. Unfortunately, when the slow-mo-rewind-go-over-the-details-one-more-time pace of the retrograde turns glacial, frustration morphs into intolerance. Give up the need to hurry and instead, make nice.

But the true source of tension is the third exact contact of the Saturn/Uranus opposition, which occurred yesterday, Earth time (and, measured by cosmic moments, is still occurring). This opposition signifies the dissolution of the status quo and the resistance of the status quo to that decompensation. And we are definitely in the resistance stage of the breakdown process. To say that this opposition represents unrest would be an understatement. It would also be an understatement to say the current political and cultural turbulence is going to end anytime soon. When the structures of society are forced to change because they no longer serve, chaos is probable. (But that doesn't mean it will lead to civil collapse.) From my astrological perspective, we've been living in chaos since the last time Saturn and Uranus opposed each other in the 1960s. That series of oppositions also challenged the status quo and the status quo has been resisting ever since. The religious right and the glorification of Reagan are actually responses to the last Saturn/Uranus cultural revolution; we could contextualize what's happening right now as a continuation of what started then. And while I'm not suggesting (although I want to) that the solution is wearing flowers and love beads, making love instead of war might move us out of the mess we are in.

This week, put a flower in your hair and do your best to believe in the power of love.

If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon sign, read that, too.

ARIES The solution to your most immediate dilemma is figuring out how to reconcile seemingly oppositional forces. Consider taking no "unnecessary action," and rather than forcing the situation, allow it to unfold.

TAURUS You can blame the retrograde for what seems like interminable delays. Or you can praise the retrograde for providing opportunities to review and reconsider certain choices. It's up to you — but I'd go with gratitude.

GEMINI Time is once again what's needed to gain perspective, so continue to take daily life at your own pace. Rather than rush from one responsibility to another, do whatever is necessary to maintain your mental health.

CANCER Spontaneous conversations reveal startling information, and your reaction is likely to be deeply emotional. Be authentic about what you feel, but try not to get lost in the process.

LEO Be determined to find a peaceful resolution and then quiet your mind and allow your intuition to guide your choices. I'm not suggesting miracles. I'm simply advising listening to your heart.

VIRGO It's all about calling in your deepest wisdom — and then following that inner counsel. Just be prepared to be inspired to make some previously unconsidered and definitely unconventional choices.

LIBRA As Mercury reviews the details of recent weeks, the secret of your success will be not allowing that review to devolve into an inner litany of regret. Stay open to what you can learn, but refuse to brood.

SCORPIO Your normally deep waters run even deeper this week as you take in your immediate environment at a new level. Give yourself enough time to digest the information and you'll make the appropriate adjustments.

SAGITTARIUS Try not to let strong feelings about your career circumstances throw you off track. Yes, the situation is intense, but you have an innately optimistic attitude to pull you through.

CAPRICORN Be in the moment, stay in your integrity, and resist the temptation to try to control the outcome. As hard as it might be, simply let the situation unfold in its own time and its own way.

AQUARIUS The challenge is staying objective, and while this sounds like a "can do," maintaining neutrality may not be possible when you factor in strong emotions. Make "keepin' it real" your mantra, and you'll do fine.

PISCES Once again, it's all about refusing to position yourself as a victim. So rather than concentrate on the "cost" of certain relationships, focus on what you're learning about yourself and others.


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