The Astrology of November features Mars, Chiron, Neptune and Uranus. Mars is currently in Cancer, where it will remain for several months, since it retrogrades there on the 15th, allowing us to stop and examine our feelings more closely. The Scorpio New Moon squares Neptune, numinous harbinger of events and feelings beyond this physical plane, so that confusion and even outright deception might come up for us as well over the course of this monthly cycle. A Grand trine is formed in the Water signs when the New Moon hits on November 9th. This is between Sun/Moon, a stationing Mars, and Uranus in Pisces, also getting ready to turn to direct motion on the 24th, and means that we are more emotional than usual. With Uranus involved there also may well be surprises that we encounter. Meanwhile the forming Jupiter – Pluto conjunction in Sagittarius, a powerful configuration that perfects in mid-December, begins to show itself by emphasizing the possibility of profound change in our lives.
Thus, as the Mercury retrograde period drops away, Mars begins its own turn-around mid-month, staying retrograde until nearly February. We are likely to feel more internal and more introspective than usual during this end-of-year phase. As he stations, Mars also makes a powerful quincunx aspect to Chiron, triggered by the Quarter Moon and New Moon lunations of early November. Chiron tends to bring up old patterns that inhibit our more complete self-acceptance, and Uranus, with its sudden insights, quite a bit more powerful than usual at this time, can help us to move through these rather more quickly that we might ever have imagined, so that this can be a month of break-through.
The country as a whole may well be in the process of attempting to transcend past patterns, with transiting Chiron quincunx and Uranus trine U.S. Sun, and Mars conjunct, as it stations retrograde in November. The painful process of integrating the horrors of the Iraq war will continue, as indicated by this Mars transit, and also by the new planet Eris, Goddess of Strife and Discord, which remains conjunct U.S. Chiron for the entire period of the war. There may be an element of nostalgia for the ghosts of Christmas past that drives our national reliance on family ritual as we approach the end of the year.
The most dynamic configuration coming up in late November and December is the forming Jupiter–Pluto conjunction, perfecting on December 11th, just two days after the Sagittarius New Moon, and staying active right through the December holiday season. This emphasizes the mandate for evolutionary process that we are seeing lately. Profound change in anyone's life is never easy, and usually only happens when spurred on by events that in a sense force us to move in the appropriate direction. In this case we can choose to bottom out sooner rather than later, to heed the writing on the wall and begin to transform our lives in the direction that Spirit intends for us. What after all do we have to lose but our ego-attachment to the lifeless past?
Transits to the U.S. Chart
As we mentioned last month, the mid-month lunations continue to be powerful. A sample of the news from last month reveals that more and more information regarding the conduct of this war is coming to light, just as we suspected. Since these headlines are so outrageous – we will take the space to quote a few directly, with a reference link to the full article:
Former U.S. General: War in Iraq is "Nightmare With No End In Sight"
The former U.S. military commander in Iraq, Retired Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez has described the war as a "nightmare with no end in sight." He blamed the Bush administration for developing a "catastrophically flawed, unrealistically optimistic war plan."
Also news about Blackwater continues – U.S. and Iraqi officials are reportedly negotiating Baghdad's request that the private military company Blackwater be expelled from the county within six months. Also, in a lawsuit filed just after the October 10th New Moon, the Center for Constitutional Rights has filed against Blackwater for the September 16th shooting that left so many unarmed civilians dead for no apparent reason.
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In another amazing story, here is a report that a United States embassy official offered $12,500 to a father of a slain boy to keep quiet about the events:
Baghdad - Mohammed Hafidh says he refused to accept an envelope filled with $12,500 in cash from Patricia Butenis, deputy chief of mission at the US Embassy in Baghdad, as compensation for the death of his 10-year-old son, Ali.
"I told her that I want the courts to have their say," says Mr. Hafidh, whose son was among 17 Iraqi civilians killed in a Sept. 16 shooting involving Blackwater USA security guards - private contractors who were escorting a US diplomat at the time.
Haythem al-Rubaie, who lost his son and wife in the same shooting, says he won't even meet with Ms. Butenis, who offered cash compensation on Wednesday to seven of the victims' families, including Hafidh.
Pastor Jules Vivian from an Assemblies of God Christian church in Baghdad says the Iraqi government must put an end to the "law of the jungle" when it comes to security contractors like Blackwater.
He lost Jenevia Jalal, a close friend and minister at his church, who was killed along with a female friend a few weeks after the Blackwater incident by security guards working for another private company, Unity Resources Group (URG).
In a country that has grown almost numb to daily bloodshed, those two incidents triggered widespread outrage at the hired foreign gunmen, who many Iraqis say are mercenaries with licenses to kill. The incidents were a tipping point for Baghdadis, who regularly complain they are bullied by bands of heavily armed contractors bulldozing through traffic in SUVs or armored pickup trucks.
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Here's another headline from the alternative press:
Gen. Abizaid on Iraq War: "Of Course It's About Oil"
A former top US general has admitted the war in Iraq was about oil. Former CENTCOM Commander General John Abizaid told an audience at Stanford University “Of course it's about oil, we can't really deny that."
Also, new questions are being raised over how a personal friend of President Bush secured an oil deal with the Kurdish regional government in Iraq. The Texas-based company Hunt Oil signed the deal in September. Hunt CEO Ray Hunt has been a key Republican fundraiser. He sits on the board of directors for Halliburton and is a member of the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board under an appointment from President Bush.
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In all of this we see the hand of Pluto on U.S. Mercury, bringing the truth to light no matter how unpleasant it might be. Last month's New Moon was also near the U.S. Saturn degree and opposed to U.S. Chiron, while it trined U.S. Mars, bringing the embarrassment and pain of this White House engineered war to the forefront of consciousness as we discussed in October.
This month, in a similar configuration, the New Moon triggers a stationing Uranus in trine with U.S. Sun, implying surprises, as Pluto continues to quincunx U.S. Mercury. In fact, at the time of the New Moon, the transiting Jupiter/Pluto midpoint quite closely aspects the degree of U.S. Mercury, representing the media, as Jupiter exactly opposes U.S. Mars (military).. More and stranger revelations yet are likely to emerge, and the suddenness of the information and the publics reaction may be startling indeed, as our national nightmare continue to roll.
The Last Quarter Moon of Thursday, November 1st (see chart ) is an interesting one in terms of Chiron. The Moon in Leo opposes Chiron while the Sun squares it, and we may find that old patters of connection to groups or to individuals within our circle come up for better understanding and eventual healing through the early part of the month.
The Scorpio New Moon takes place on Friday afternoon, November 9th (). This is a magical and chaotic New Moon, one that squares Neptune and forms a Grand trine with Mars and Uranus, just as Mars is getting ready to turn retrograde in Cancer. Our emotions are definitely involved, and also the mystical spaces within ourselves that Neptune opens up for us. There is also the implicit conflict between the ideal, represented by Neptune, and the realistic / pragmatic, the constant backdrop to our wild imagination here on planet earth. The Sabian Symbol for this degree, "A Path Through Woods Brilliant With Multicolored Splendor," reminds us of the time of year, and also the multiple planes of awareness and the mystical possibilities of each passing moment as do the outer planet alignments. With Uranus in the picture, anything can happen.
Mars retrogrades late in the evening of the 14th, just after midnight PST (). As it does so, we are reminded to look closely into all our emotional reactions, especially since Mars also aspects Chiron at this time. The retrograde lasts until January 30th, when Pluto will already be entering into Capricorn. Mars does not leave Cancer until May.
The First Quarter Moon of Saturday, November 17th (), is another powerful lunation. This comes as a testing period following the New Moon, when we must determine which of our initiatives from the period of a week past is actually viable in the real world, and so brings up the conflict of the ideal and the real once more. Since the Moon also conjuncts Neptune in Aquarius, there is an added emphasis on the paradoxical polarity of these antithetical positions, that must nevertheless be resolved.
The Full Moon in Gemini, opposing The Sun in Sagittarius, of Thanksgiving weekend, taking place on Saturday, November 24th (), is accompanied by a forming Jupiter – Pluto conjunction that perfects in December. This entire configuration brings up the possibility of the resolution of opposites, and the renewal of connection with our circle of friends and loved ones for purposes of fellowship and spiritual realization. It should make for a good time to get together.