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Preparing for Tranceformation: Mercury Retro and Summer’s Transits

This summer is not a rebirth, it is
a birth.  That difference is important.  It means that the
consciousness that emerges from the canal is a completely new species. 

In our desire to stay attuned to
the exciting new frequencies of this consciousness, we can seem stuck
between feeling both overwhelmed and empowered from the woven thread of
online connectivity.  We are increasingly etherealizing, spending far
too much time with our umbilical cords plugged in or making love to our
iphone — we tend to do this even more when the Sun travels through
Aries. We awaken from our Piscean slumber, and start to plan like
crazy for summer, prepare for travels and festivals, and the activation
of all we have been incubating in the winter months.  Aries is a
completely future-oriented, action-based sign.  It is that time of the
year where we emerge from the womb, passionate to share our gifts.

Yet the next sign of the zodiac,
Taurus, reminds us that there is nothing more crucial at these
transformational times than appreciating the sensual earth mama in all
her abundant glory — the delicious meal dancing across your tongue, the
tender caress of a loved one, planting roots firm in mountain pose,
hugging the bark of brother tree, breathing with the sunset, and
inhaling the flowers as they blossom into their new life — their
beautiful mirror for us as a species, in our youthful bloom as beings
of conscious light.  The Sun entered Taurus April 20th, to join both
Venus and Mercury in his retrograde motion since April 16th.

Re-trograde, re-newal,
re-surrection: on Wednesday April 28th, we experience the Full Moon in
Scorpio, allowing us to access the dark mystery as we regenerate
and rebirth in preparation for the summer ahead.  The Full
Moon in Scorpio is Wesak, celebrated as the day when the Buddha
penetrated the heart of the mystery, and stung the essence of
Scorpionic truth, attaining Nirvana.  Later in the week, the pagan
festival of Beltane, highlighting the re-turn of the Earth
mother in all her bounty, invites us to fertilize the gifts we have
been gestating all winter, especially creatively with Mars extended
journey though Leo.

From the Aries statements of I AM
and I WILL to the Taurean phrase, I HAVE, we expand our identity to
include our value systems, our self-esteem, our management of
resources, and our sense of secure belonging.  These are powerful areas
to focus upon entering this summer's catalytic shifts. The birth pangs
are shaking us from the core of the Earth herself.

To feel into the textures of this birth
canal, we can study the recent, nearly simultaneous occurrences of the
massive earthquake in Tibet  and the volcanic explosion in Iceland,
beginning with Mercury Retrograde.

For centuries, astrologers, have
studied Mercury's triannual retrograde motion, usually three weeks
long.  During the retrograde, Mercury dives closer and closer to the
Sun.  The Sun's plasma rotates at different rates, creating a dynamic,
tangled magnetic web with the possibilities of millions of poles, not
just one north and south pole.  When Mercury goes retrograde, we can
picture the messenger god flying about with his winged sandals tying to
dance between these huge knots of electromagnetic energy.  Does this
picture sound familiar to us who chronicle these retrograde cycles? 
Surely, Mercury and his psychic correlations in us — urges to
communicate, travel, trade, network — are all going to get jumbled in
the solar spiderweb.  But we can also feel these mental chaos and
confused contractual effects during Mercury's shadow period — when he
enters the degree to which he will retrograde back to during his
cycle.  This shadow effect usually lasts between 2-3 weeks before and
after the regular retrograde cycle.

If there was any doubt as to the
reality of the shadow effect, we need look no further than the volcanic
eruption in Iceland and its subsequent effects of travel delays,
cancellations, adjustments, refunds, etc.  The volcano erupted during
the shadow period and its effects have carried into the retrograde
cycle.  Additionally, the horrible 6.9 earthquake in Tibet, killing
between 2000-10,000 also demonstrates some of the Mercury retrograde
frustrations: coupled with the breakdown of phone lines for rescue
efforts, since the province is very remote and mountainous, it has made
travel to this region very challenging.

Importantly, the volcano and
earthquake also reflect one of the more uncomfortable and aggravating
sky transits exact from April through Summer of 2010: the Saturn-Uranus
opposition, and its challenging but stimulating square to Pluto in
Capricorn. Each planet and sign rule or have affinity with certain
elements of the weather or nature. Capricorn rules the mountains and
Pluto rules volcanoes; thus, the Earth's rumbling intensity of 2010 in
Haiti, Indonesia, Chile, Los Angeles, Tibet, and Iceland signify the
beginnings of many transformational, tectonic shifts over the next

In addition, all flight technology
is related to Uranus' impulse to move freely, at will.  But Saturn has
"grounded" this urge, delayed and constricted the ability to follow our
individual desires, creating the frustration that I cannot do what
I want to do, nor do I have the freedom to go where I want, when, and

How can you translate these
powerful transits into your personal life at this time?  Where is Pluto
challenging you to confront the shadow and embrace cathartic release? 
What are the Saturnian obstacles and walls to you realizing your
Uranian original genius, following your unique path, or breaking away
from limiting perspectives?

One only needs to look at the last
opposition of Saturn to both Uranus and Pluto during the ultra
conservative politics of the 60's in opposition to the electric
ladyland culture of the hippies to understand the uncomfortable, and
somewhat irresolvable tension of these two evolutionary forces.  In the
last two years, the Saturn-Uranus opposition has created the health
care crisis and the irritable and highly charged build up to the 2008
elections, when Saturn-Uranus were exactly opposed.

Big daddy Jupiter conjoins Uranus
the rest of 2010, amplifying the inspiration and excitement.  But his
opposition to Saturn also cranks up the volume on the friction between
the visionary potential and the "real," the hopeful possibility and the
gritty actuality.  This is beginning to show up for many of us through
our attempts at new models of exchange and currency — often we combine
barter, money, and payment plans into a single exchange for projects
and work.  But fairness in finance, love, politics, and business, a
Saturn in Libra theme over the next two years, will take a lot of
compassion and tweaking for us to fully realize the Libran ideal of

This limitless potential, these
horizons without edge, can also intimidate us, as we can easily feel
the frying of the nervous system. To help us, we receive the beneficial
quality of the opposition from Saturn, especially in his exalted
position in Libra.  While Jupiter-Uranus is strung out on radical
ideas, breakthrough awareness, and even Facebook overload, Saturn
centers and focuses all of these nervous, electrified psyches,
requiring responsible maintenance of our relationships.  In Libra,
Saturn reminds us that it will be these relationships that must mature
in order to fulfill their greater potential: to provide us an anchor
amidst the acceleration.   

Saturn asks: "Of all these hundreds and
hundreds of ‘friends,' how shall we prioritize and not get swept
away?"  With Saturn in Libra, we may discover the need to allow certain
social practices and relationships to pass away, while we nurture
others of more solid dependency.  The purpose of this process is to
gain clarity on what is balanced, harmonious, and equal in our energy
exchanges with others, including intimate personal and business

The symbol of volcanic eruption is
very important and pertinent to consider in what is beginning to emerge
all around us. We feel at these moments both as the volcano and the
lichen, the new life, on the crust of the volcano.  All the new life
will sprout from us.  Every action unfolds in butterfly-effect
repercussion.  Thus, we are nervous and erupting, we are anxious and
overflowing, like the symbol of the cosmic ocean of Jupiter and Uranus
conjunct in Pisces.  In the ocean, we recognize that we're all one, so
our sensitivity increases and we feel everything.  Then we wonder, "Am
I swimming or drowning here?"  That Jupiterian urge to expand and grow,
as well as overindulge and overflow without borders merges with Uranus,
the urge to liberate, break free, radically shift, even if it's
traumatizing… birth and the fetus bursting from the amniotic

With every Jupiter-Uranus
conjunction, once every fourteen years, new cultural phenomena emerge. 
Brilliant works of genius are channeled and shared with the world,
forever shifting collective perception. In order for each one of us to
become a conduit for this enlightened breakthrough, we must create the
space in our lives to receive the divine mind, to listen to our
intuition, and to leave our previous worldview behind.  Saturn's
opposition makes this easier said then done.  Due to all of these
planets' square from Pluto, the Lord of the Underworld and the
transformations necessary for evolution, we must surrender to the
catastrophic volcano that destroys the old structures and fertilizes
the landscape with molten vitality — the womb is abandoned in agony and
ecstacy.  For the infant's eyes to shine alive with golden sunlight,
the constrictive pressure of the canal must be surmounted.  

And if we relax, we may be able to
slide through this wormhole.  If we try to force, we may find ourselves
sucked in every direction.  Amidst this liminal, bardo awareness, we
should not be surprised to fall asleep and wake up crying at the sheer
potency of what is occurring.  Insomniac passages may become more of
our norm as well, as our Mother Earth roars from within us.  So we
release into what is.  Conscious, connective breathwork can help to
repattern us in these moments of birth once we assure ourselves that we
are both protected in our journey, and also going to appear quite
different in the mirror on the other side.

I was recently reminded by a good
friend that many pregnant mothers in the months preceding birth
experience a complete mental fog, as if everything they know clouds
over.  Indeed, their consciousness is preparing to enter the point of
no return.  The mother will forever onward play that sacred role, and
the old baggage of self-destructive stories and defeating wounds must
be discarded to care for the new life.

Each one of us is now being forced
into a similar situation.  We are pregnant with massive potential, but
we must first be willing to destroy our delusions, to abandon our
naivete, and to transform our karma into our dharma,
our restless soul-habits into the activation of our luminous and
evolutionary purpose.

The real juice of the undulating
tide we find ourselves riding can be found in the moment just as the
wave takes us under. We imagine the potent and revealing
conversations that must have transpired in the long overnights at the
airports, in the full lobbies of the hotels, in the waiting lines of
the rental car companies?  Struggle and suffering can seed an empathy
and insight into archetypal difference–the Taurean "being" vs. the
Aries "doing," Uranian freedom and Saturn constriction.

When you can't sleep, ask yourself
what god is keeping you up, hunkering in your ear with some hidden
wisdom.  When you break down, recognize why that catharsis was
necessary in order for you to break through into a deeper level
of self-awareness.  And remember the simplicity and necessity of
inhalation and exhalation.  And let Taurus sensuality guide you in the
month of May.




Preparation for Tranceformation, The
Astrological Transits of Summer 2010 Teleconference:

I invite you all to join me for a special teleconference Wednesday May 5th, where we will expand upon this
newsletter's themes.  We will explore in depth the specific transits of
this summer, far more powerful than those of 2012 — the culmination of
many cosmic forces in an unprecedented Cardinal Climax upon the
seasonal axis of Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn.  We will discuss
the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction, the Uranus-Pluto square, the
Saturn-Pluto square, the Saturn-Uranus opposition and more, giving
special attention to some key historical cycles when the planets were
in the same positions as this summer.  I will also ask for
participants' birth data to help personalize these transits, in order
to point out what evolutionary forces in your own chart will be
catalyzed by this summer's transformations, providing tools for how
best to allow your own unique genius to shine through.

All participants will also receive
a $5 discount copy of my new book, Codex of the Soul: Astrology as
a Spiritual Practice,
being released this June.  To pre-order copy
of the book and read excerpts visit

If you would like to read excerpts from
the book, please go to  To pre-order
your copy, send an email to
To follow the thread on Mercury Retrograde effects, visit me on

Please follow the paypal link on my
website to register for the Summer Transits class.


Image by Daníel Örn, courtesy of Creative Commons license


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