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Astrological Forecast for July & August 2010

by Armand Diaz

July continues the astrological excitement that started in late May. We have planets changing signs, significant aspects between outer planets, a retrograde station, and an eclipse thrown in for good measure. On a practical level, this indicates that the deck is being reshuffled and we are being dealt a new hand in our personal and collective lives. At such times, the stress levels can get very high for all of us, so we need to be mindful that while times of change can be challenging and even frightening, they also represent opportunities for growth to occur in quantum leaps. Holding on to the status quo might be impossible, but the ability to create a new future is the gift of transformative times.

The firecrackers should be crackling on the Fourth of July, as we have the Last Quarter Moon in the fiery sign of Aries. Just a day later, Uranus (also in Aries) stations to retrograde (appears to back up through the zodiac). Uranus stations are freedom-festivals, with an intensity a day or two on either side. Coming right between two eclipses and on the World Axis (zero degrees of Aries), this station promises a fireworks display to light up our inner skies. Watch for insights and a new determination to go your own way as this week unfolds. Naturally, everyone else will be similarly inspired, so we could have a few blow-ups as patience will be at a minimum. On a collective level, look for freedom fighters and rogue groups to have a day in the news.

Venus, planet of love and relationship, is in opposition to dreamy Neptune on the 8th. While we might take a less than realistic approach to romance and our partnerships, this aspect helps to fuel our sense of possibility. It could be that we are a bit deluded, but the quality of that delusion says something about us and our relationships - are we starry eyed in love, or jealous and insecure?

Two days later, on the 10th, Venus leaves Leo - where she is romantic and dramatic - for Virgo, where she’ll stay until August 6th. In the sign of the virgin, the goddess is, predictably, less fun-loving and open. Our collective mood tilts a bit more towards the personal, and we are more selective about with whom we share our time. Love often seems less important than other obligations, and at times we can become overprotective of our feelings.

A total eclipse of the Sun - a powerful New Moon - takes place on July 11th at 3:34 p.m., EDT. With the Sun and Moon both in the sign of Cancer, it is not unlikely that we will be dealing with personal and collective issues revolving around security, home, and the clans (familial and national) with which we identify. Eclipses build in the weeks before the actual event, and their subtle intensity fades slowly. This particular eclipse comes after a Full Moon Lunar Eclipse on June 26th, so the intensity has been up there for a while. For those of you interested in viewing this eclipse, Easter Island (in the South Pacific) is your best bet if you want to be on dry land, although it will be briefly visible at the southern tip of South America.

A Venus-Pluto aspect on July 13th might suggest passion, but could also be a good time to let go of a partnership that isn’t working out. In the business world, it can be a time to seal a deal or decide to move on to greener pastures.

Saturn, planet of work and responsibility, moves into Libra on the 21st. Saturn backed into Virgo just long enough to let issues surrounding health care and immigration resurface, but he will be spending the next couple of years in the sign of relationships. Look for the push-pull between the progressive and conservative to be making news, with topics like gay marriage in the headlines.

Jupiter stations to retrograde on the 23rd. Jupiter stations tend to fill us with enthusiasm and inspiration, as they create a geared-up can-do attitude. The only drawback is the tendency to get a little too pumped about our ideas and beliefs. I mention that because only two days later Jupiter makes a tough square to Pluto. When these two planets are in aspect, there is a tendency for some folks to go to extremes in expressing their beliefs. Power and faith can be a constructive combination, but it doesn’t take too much imagination to see the potential danger of this pairing. It’s a bit like working with a volatile explosive - extreme care is needed.

The Full Moon will certainly add to the energy of these days. Jupiter and Pluto will be very close to an exact aspect all the way out to August 3rd, when the aspect will again form. This effectively creates more than a week of this intense energy, which will set the tone for everything else during that time.

Just a day later, Saturn and Uranus make the last in a series of five oppositions that began back on Election Day in 2008. Saturn champions the traditional, Uranus the revolutionary. This time, their meet-up is on the Aries-Libra axis, and relationship versus individual needs are likely to be highlighted, an ongoing theme for the next several years as these planets sail through those cardinal signs. When "the system" (any system) breaks down, we can hold on tighter or we can pack up and move elsewhere. Saturn reminds us that either choice comes with a cost. It might be a little hard to see what’s going on today, however, as Mercury opposes Neptune, making information a bit less than crystal clear. Try to hang back, and put off important decisions until the fog lifts.

The 30th-31st could have late-July fireworks, as Mars opposes Uranus and then Saturn. More or less, the effect of these aspects is to set off, or "trigger" the potential of the 26th, although no additional action is really needed to make things happen, given the Jupiter-Pluto aspect’s ongoing influence. Speaking of which, Mars gets into the action by aspecting those two planets on the 4th of August. There’s no getting around the sense that the end of July will hold immense potential for deep change on every level.

After such major aspects, we might be a little less excited about all the Venusian activity in August. She meets up with Uranus, Saturn, and Jupiter before the New Moon (which is on the 9th), and then with Pluto on the 10th. All of the energy which has been bouncing around the "big" issues of the day will likely be brought home to the area of relationships and values at this time. While cracks are likely where there are stress marks in our partnerships, this time also holds great potential for realignment.

As nice as it would be to take summer off and kick back, the energy just keeps moving this August. Jupiter opposes Saturn on the 16th, highlighting issues of change versus tradition, in a sense mirroring the Saturn/Uranus opposition of late July. Economic cycles tend to be significant around these aspects, as Jupiter often signifies inflation, and Saturn has the feel of a contraction. Still, the opposition tends to highlight the entire cycle more than play out as one particular part of it.

On the 20th, the Sun opposes Neptune. Who is in control, and what are they doing could be the questions of the day. The search for answers could be all the more intense because Saturn squares Neptune on the 21st. This aspect will read us - or give us the chance to write - the next installment in the ongoing "T-Square" story among these two planets and Uranus.

The energy this summer is sizzling. There are sure to be some difficult issues emerging for all of us, individually and collectively. But it is rare that we are given such an opportunity for change. These are interesting times, indeed.

Armand M. Diaz, M.A., C.A., is certified as a Consulting Astrologer by the National Council for Geocosmic Research (NCGR). He is available for private consultations, in which he creates a supportive context for self-exploration, to help clients make decisions which are in harmony with their greatest potential, offering a truly integral approach to astrology. Armand has practiced divination for more than twenty years, working with the I Ching and Tarot in addition to astrology. He has published in various astrological journals, including The Mountain Astrologer. He can be reached at 917-216-1541 or armand@ integralastrology.net, or though his website at www.integralastrology.net.

Armand Diaz

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