As we head into today’s New Moon, we’re coming off an exciting couple weeks. Time cycles in Astrology happen at many different levels. There are the big, outer planetary movements and interactions that define decades and years. Within years, there are the rhythmic shifts of tides, pushing big currents this way or that. Then, popping up through the months for a few days or a couple weeks are the crests and peaks, moments when several planets converge.

The past couple weeks, we’ve had several quick crests and peaks—aspect patterns activated by Venus or Mercury that have coalesced specific qualities or themes. These quick aspects might have been giving the feeling of movement and depth of feeling and thinking, but unclear resolution. The coming month will give us a couple more defined aspects, which may prove to be memorable moments of the summer, followed by a big shift of tide just before July’s New Moon as Jupiter goes direct. These will give us poignant tastes of larger movements happening throughout this year.

The first noteworthy aspect activates the Mars/Ketu (South Node) conjunction that’s been present for a couple weeks and will be active and important through this summer’s Eclipses. These two represent a shift in the fiery, assertive dimension of the masculine. Mars is the Warrior and the Athlete, Ketu represents the past and its passing away; together, we’re seeing a digestion of strong masculine energies, a release and letting go of forms of fire that are no longer useful. I see this aspect behind last weeks suicides as well as this weekend’s conversations with North Korea. It’s said that this brings up difficult emotions in the collective—if we can individually deal with them, finding a healthy way to burn off the heat, it might be easy for us to process and understand the shift that’s taking place. Otherwise, the nightmarish tones can overtake us and create violence.

If you’re already tuning into this process and figuring out a way to work with the heat, awesome. If you’re having a difficult time with it, listen for new connections to be made the first week of this Lunar Cycle. Venus will be entering a conjunction with Rahu during this time, which also brings it into an opposition with Mars. On this face level, Venus/Mars speaks to strong encounters between the masculine and feminine—it’s a romantic, sexual, aesthetic, animalistic dynamic. Venus conjunct Rahu can bring intense desire and destabilizing hunger, but there’s also magic in this. Listen for something that’s truly an experience of the unknown, rather than simply alluring or glamorous. In turn, this will reflect back on our own Martial self, which is intimately tied up with seeking our desires. What do we truly want? What contrivances can be discarded? What muse inspires our deepest strength?

In the Qabalistic tradition, we’re taught to experience a multi-dimensional devotion to the Holy Guardian Angel, simultaneously treating it like a God/Goddess, patron, parent, sibling, friend, and lover. All of these give us a taste of different aspects of Divine love, combining to create a sharp and poignant devotion. If Venus is the object of our devotion and Mars is its counterpart, contemplating our different experiences of love and the effects each of them make on us may tighten our sense of dedication. This tension between lover and beloved will feel most intense around the Solstice.. Let it change you!

Savoring this encounter with the inspiration of our aspiration could be super helpful as Mars takes its retrograde through the rest of the summer, which begins on June 26th, the day before the Full Moon. This retrograde will be emphasized through the eclipses—in many ways, this Summer is about this transformation of our Martial selves. While astrology always plays out in each individual life uniquely, we can definitely affirm that the hoops and trenches of July and August are aimed at reconnecting us to our Warrior’s Heart.

Following this face-off between Venus/Rahu and Mars/Ketu will be the Sun/Saturn opposition, which will be preceded by a square to the Sun from Chiron. As Saturn is retrograde and deepening into a square with Chiron later this summer, this will be a great moment to lean into their difficult messages. As the Full Moon will be conjunct Saturn, we won’t really be able to avoid this heaviness.

Saturn teaches us to take responsibility for what we really care about. Over the last few years, I’ve been seeing my own experiences of responsibility played out through my relationship to my father and other paternal figures. At my worst, I feel helpless, wanting someone else to care for me, to be dependent on someone else. Other times, I feel angry at the Saturnian world, the cold, hard, difficult reality we live within. Often, I simply want an external authority to make decisions for me. At my best, I see that even my most trusted guides can’t give me my free will—at some level, I have to become the solid, diamond-like author(ity) in my own world. Saturn’s retrograde this summer speaks to difficulties with this Saturnian world. How can we navigate time, money, and commitments with the most integrity? Where is the inner strength and solidity that comes before those encounters?

Chiron’s square with Saturn is a familiar aspect—we had it through much of last year, when difficulty around the above themes would have been particularly poignant. Chiron works by directing our attention to our pain, wherein the solution also lies. As the Wounded Healer, Chiron teaches that our suffering also becomes a gift—here, we are thinking about pain with regard to fathers and authority figures, difficulty with structure and discipline, and harder, more substantial and tangible challenges in our healing processes. Chiron’s wounds are multi-layered; the process of healing is not ‘fixing’ anything, but of tending the wound and acting from a place of wholeness.

By the time of the Full Moon, we should experience this deep-seated friction decently clearly. Again, like the Venus/Rahu conjunction in relationship to the longer Mars/Ketu aspect, we can think of the Sun’s illumination of the Chiron/Saturn square to be a hefty experience of a longer process. Savoring and leaning into these couple weeks of difficulty may prove helpful throughout the summer. At the same time, recognizing that these processes take time to unfold might help us tap back into the place of wholeness where healing can really happen.

After a hot and trying lunar cycle, a big shift of tide happens just before the next new moon, when Jupiter stations direct. As the planet that corresponds to our sense of adventure, enthusiasm, and ability to connect to a bigger frame of meaning, Jupiter’s retrograde since March has sent us backtracking, retracing our steps in reviewing what we’ve been learning since it was first moving through this territory in December. This might have looked like deepened dedication to or critical conversation with spiritual pathways, shifting relationships with guiding figures or traditions, and a deeper tuning of our own ability to connect to our opportunities. As Jupiter turns retrograde, consider where the enthusiasm is moving and get ready to set sail as it picks up steam.

As a part of my own shifting journey, I’m going to be restructuring my offerings, giving individuals more ways to work with me and setting up to start offering more substantial workshops and programs. Towards that end, I won’t be doing any more readings on the current sliding scale, which goes from $50-$100. If you want to snag a reading at those rates before they change, hit me up! Moving through Saturn’s retrograde, taking advantage of Jupiter’s station direct, and preparing for Eclipse season, this is a great time for a reading.

Reach out to me at charliecro@gmail.com, or schedule a reading at astrologyally.com/readings !

June’s New Moon: Shifting Flames and Deepening Resolve

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