Astrology of September 2009
by Henry Seltzer (
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The Astrology of September features Saturn and Uranus in opposition, highlighted by the September 18th New Moon, together with another important Mercury retrograde period that starts on the 6th and lasts through to the end of the month. The weekend after Mercury retrogrades, the First Quarter Moon of Friday afternoon and evening, September 11th, when Pluto also turns direct in the first degree of Capricorn, signals the beginning of a powerful week-long period leading up to the New Moon. The biggest news of this transitional month is that Saturn and Uranus are exactly opposed in this mid-September period, which will be the precursor to the cardinal T-square including Pluto that begins in October and continues right through 2012 and beyond. By the end of October Saturn will enter Libra and square Pluto with Uranus a mere seven degrees away from opposing Saturn and squaring Pluto from the other side. Uranus joins the party more fully when it enters Aries in the spring of 2010. This time period from 2010 to perhaps 2014 will be a time of great changes for America and indeed the world.

In the initial portion of this climactic period of time, the current standoff between Saturn and Uranus harks back to last November, when they opposed each other for the first time in this series. Saturn and Uranus are antithetical energies, and can be conceived as conservative support for the status quo versus youthful rebellion that wants to change everything. Of course it is increasingly clear in the final year of this decade that change is needed, and needed badly. Business as usual just doesn't seem to be getting it anymore. On both a personal and a collective level we must accept that the structure of our lives as we have known it is changing forever in the dawn of this new era. The old structure has sustained us but it must now be allowed to pass away, however ungracefully.

Meanwhile, Mercury retrogrades in Libra for almost the entire month. The date of the retrograde is September 6th, and all during the first week of September, as Mercury slows down, we will find ourselves closer and closer to missed communications and the reflective stance that is the hallmark of the retrograde period. Moving backwards until the 29th, Mercury will dip into Virgo before straightening out and regaining Libra in early October, finally leaving its retrograde shadow on October 13th. This entire month and beyond will therefore be a better time for reflecting than for taking new action. All during this month we will be subjected to a sense of introspection and mechanical and communicative breakdown, especially strong since Saturn is simultaneously involved. After the Saturnian (and Uranian) New Moon of September 18th, Mercury's contact with the Sun occurs in the early hours of September 20th. Then Mercury conjuncts Saturn for the second of three times as it moves backward into Virgo, on September 23rd. The final hit with Saturn will take place on October 4th. All these dates will reflect an especially strong dose of Saturn, with the limitations and restrictions implied, as Saturn continues to oppose Uranus.

This opposition of archetypal powerhouses is highlighted by the September 18th New Moon, which conjuncts Saturn and opposes Uranus, almost exactly. We will be called at this time to make sacrifices in the name of expediency, and also to allow inspiration carry us beyond current limitations. Neptune is also in the picture, occupying the 25th degree of Aquarius, thirty degrees away from Uranus, and therefore making an inconjunct aspect to the Sun, Moon and Saturn, an aspect whose keyword is adjustment. As we struggle to make peace with ourselves in this time, we also must rise to the occasion. We can only move forward now in a way that is consistent with our highest expectations for ourselves. At this crucial time in history, nothing else will do.

Transits to the U.S. Chart USA

In the current month's transits there is quite a lot of activity for the chart of the United States. This is the chart dating from July 4, 1776 when the Declaration of Independence was signed. These highly significant events occur mostly during the first half of September. This is because as Saturn opposes Uranus and Pluto stations in the first degree of Capricorn, these three archetypal powerhouses line up with several sensitive points in the U.S. chart. The various events are detailed below.

The September 4th Full Moon will be active in the U.S. chart, and will likely serve as a harbinger for the more climactic mid-month timing. At the time of the Full Moon, Saturn is exactly conjunct U.S Neptune, while the Sun and Moon trigger U.S Saturn, meaning that certain areas of relative fuzziness surrounding the executive branch will not only continue but become exacerbated. I am referring for one thing to the Obama administration's stance on health care, which will surely loom as a giant issue for the entire nation in the coming weeks and months. Although talking up the virtues of health care reform in this country in a big way, this administration has been rather short on specifics, even taking the most popular option off the official table, namely a so-called "single payer system" such as Canada, Australia and Great Britain currently enjoy. Of course this option is strongly opposed by the health insurance industry, which could lose billions. These transits seem to indicate that that administration's stand on this issue will become if anything, even more muddled over the next few weeks, and that some signal of this may well be sent even before Labor Day. Another area in which the administration seems to be talking in one way and acting in another is with regard to the issue of habeas corpus rights for prisoners in U.S. run institutions like Guantanamo. After announcing policy changes toward granting habeas corpus with great fanfare, including the closing of Guantanamo, the justice department has moved in just the opposite direction with respect to individual cases such as that of Mohammed Jawad (See truthout article) and also for the prisoners of Abu Ghraib and Bagram. These are the types of issues, involving official deception, which are likely to become revived during September.

These latter cases involve the military, and they and others like them where military operations are given media spin of one kind or another, are even more likely to receive renewed coverage a week beyond the Full Moon on September 11th – which is not only the 8th anniversary of 9-11 but also a tension-producing Last Quarter Moon that conjuncts and squares U.S. Mars, symbolizing the military in this country. At this time Saturn and Uranus continue to conjunct U.S. Neptune. This is also the same day that transiting Pluto stations direct – resuming its forward motion into Capricorn, in almost perfect square with the Libra U.S. Midheaven that symbolizes the leadership of the country including the administration. Transformation is still the watchword for America, becoming especially prominent in November and December when Saturn squares Pluto in early Libra. Over the week following, as Mercury retrogrades across the U.S. Midheaven also, and as Saturn and Uranus draw closer to a perfect opposition, further information is bound to come to light concerning the deception in high places that still continues long after the Bush white house has been dismantled.

With the degree of the Saturn-Uranus opposition and this September 18th New Moon aspecting U.S. Mercury as well as U.S. Neptune, the media including the entertainment media will likely be involved.

September 4th Full Moon Full Moon Chart
This Full Moon, across the VirgoPisces axis and 12 or so degrees away from the forming SaturnUranus opposition represents the flowering of the impulse from the New Moon of August 20th, which was all about the idealism and the potential pain as well as the joy of living large. Currently in the present month, with so much Saturn in the picture we are being brought down to the reality of the various situations that we find ourselves in, and this Full Moon configuration reflects that in spades. Still, with Jupiter, Neptune and Uranus still in the picture, there is plenty of optimism and the wild impulse of delight to also enjoy, and to deal with.

September 6th Mercury retrograde Mercury SR
Just two days after the Full Moon, Mercury retrogrades in early Libra, square Mars, making for a retrograde event that is stronger than usual. Mercury will re-enter Virgo just prior to the mid-month New Moon, when it will also square Pluto in Capricorn, and conjunct Saturn, finally straightening out on the 29th. Mercury escapes its retrograde shadow on October 13th. With so much Saturn in the picture, this Mercury retrograde will likely be especially obvious, with missed connections and mechanical and communication breakdowns extremely evident. This is a great time for reflection on where your life is leading you.

September 11th Last Quarter Moon Last Quarter Moon Chart
This Quarter Moon, traditionally described as a "crisis in consciousness," is a time of increased awareness brought on by a further unfolding of the dominant polarity of this month, Saturn opposite Uranus. Do we go or do we stay the course? Perhaps a little of both. Jupiter and Venus in the picture of this otherwise quite tense configuration give us optimism. Pluto also stations this day, turning to direct motion and reminding us of the fundamental transformation that is ongoing all this year and next, and that will affect the very structure of our lives. At least on the collective level, this is basically a very good thing as we begin to prune the rose bush that has been growing in some problematic directions for far too long.

September 18th New Moon New Moon Chart
This New Moon in Virgo is extremely powerful, especially in the context of the Mercury retrograde period. This is because the New Moon conjuncts Saturn almost exactly, while Saturn is still in close contact with Uranus by means of their nearly exact opposition, bringing in the antithetical archetypes into contrast of conservatism versus freedom from prior conditioning. One idea (Saturn) is simply to stay the course and work within the existing paradigm, while the other (Uranus) is to move forward bravely into the unknown. Neptune in a similar degree of Aquarius is also in the picture, softening and idealizing the impact. Nonetheless, the contrast between these powerful archetypes is stark and uncompromising, so that integration is the challenge. Somehow the middle way must be found.

September 25th First Quarter Moon First Quarter Moon Chart
This phase is traditionally described as a "crisis in action," and represents a time when the impulse from the New Moon must be rectified with the realities of the situation as it is actually encountered. This is a difficult time, since the working out of the contrasting energies of Saturn and Uranus is problematic to begin with. Pluto, now direct, is doing its transformation and its mischief in the early degrees of Capricorn, meaning that the very structure of our lives that we rely on is irrevocably changing. Mercury remains in retrograde, making it even harder to see clearly through to the resolution that we so desperately seek. All is not lost however; reliance on the power of Spirit has never been higher, or more necessary.

The indications for each Sun Sign over this month are given below. Be sure to check out your Rising Sign as well, if you know it. You can now log in to My AstroGraph, or sign up for a new account for a free calculation and interpretation of your Sun Sign, Moon Sign, and Rising Sign. Please note that dates given in this column for astrological events are based on U.S. Pacific Time Zone (UTC +8), for other locations dates may need to be adjusted depending on the number of hours of separation.

Aries Aries (March 21 - April 19)
Cardinal Fire. Your ruling planet is Mars.

It's a wild ride and a relatively undefined one, Aries. It's been a rather amorphous time lately, especially regarding significant relationships. This month you are reviewing your relationship dynamic and reflecting on the effects of partnership in your life, trying to come to some more definite conclusion. You are also simultaneously pulling for more concrete definition regarding where your life is taking you. Once again, definitiveness and consistency is sought but not easily found. You might just have to learn to live with the paradox of the situation, becoming more aware as you do of the overriding power of Spirit working itself out in unexpected ways.

As the month begins, you are delving down into your depths perhaps more than you ever expected you would in the midst of a vibrant summer. This month the pendulum swings toward the inside. Since outer achievement is so very valued in our culture, perhaps even overvalued, solitary questing seems perhaps just a bit odd, but it too has its place. This is an excellent time for meditation or for journaling, as you look more deeply into what makes you tick, and how family, friends and tribal connection work to keep you sane and connected to the flow of your life's current. Regarding these issues, the Full Moon of Friday, September 4th, is a key moment in time, when you will feel the pull of others in your life and also the mystical undertow of the beyond. A larger dimension opens up for you at this time to the extent that you are able to let it in. Mercury retrogrades two days later, on Sunday evening of Labor Day weekend, and you might find yourself questioning existing relationship contacts or perhaps researching new ones. The period of the retrograde lasts at least until the end of the month and on into the first two weeks of October when you consider the two week of its retrograde shadow, the time Mercury takes to regain its lost zodiacal ground. This period is traditionally regarded as a time of missed communications and mechanical breakdowns, and when reflection and introspection better serves us than forceful measures. The time of the retrograde can thus be an important balancing point for the direct action that so often dominates our everyday activities. The following weekend, the Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, signals the a moment of relative tension in your process, the middle of a powerful period of time leading up to the New Moon. The New Moon takes place on Friday, September 18th, and lines up with an almost exact SaturnUranus opposition across your sectors of dream imagination and discipleship to your higher self. This is an incredibly powerful time, when you are taking the wisdom of the past fully into account for the present, and when you are seeking to forge a much better understanding of where your life is going. The issues that could come up include facing all kinds of limitation, including ones of health and everyday concerns of the workplace, but the opening is also there to rise above these challenges and bravely make the connection to higher meaning in terms of life purpose. After this crucial passage, the First Quarter Moon a week later, taking place on Friday, September 25th, may serve to remind you of what you have gained and what is crucially your task to nourish as you go through the coming months. This is a time when you are turning an important corner and recognizing new priorities, perhaps more realistic ones, as the fruit of recent realizations. You are also encouraged to acknowledge change and to accept the adjustments of your life's structure that are inevitable in this time of social transformation. It may be helpful to dwell on the concept that life itself is change.

Taurus Taurus (April 20 - May 20)
Fixed Earth. Your ruling planet is Venus.

If it feels like you've been over the waterfall in a barrel you are right on target, Taurus. You are toppling like the dictator's statue in the public square after the revolution. The question of course is where do you go from here, and the answer seems to be two-fold. On the one hand, you are delving down internally, exploring private spaces within you, getting closer and closer to the bed-rock heart of the matter. On the other, with the help of friends you are seeking to redefine yourself totally, based on exciting input from an imagined future that seems almost doable. Your task is to meaningfully integrate disparate parts.

As the month begins, you are feeling the winds of transformation sweeping through you. Your perspective is changing rapidly in these rapidly changing times, and a spiritual commitment to what you do in the world has become paramount. This month, as you enter an internal and reflective period, what will be on your mind most of all is the absolute necessity to do something meaningful in your work in the world, to apply yourself as best you can to the problems of this age, and to seek the solution consistent with a higher-mind approach that you increasingly espouse. The Full Moon taking place on the first Friday of the month, on September 4th, serves to further cement these concerns and begins a two-week period of integration, when the practical considerations seem at times to outweigh your essentially mystical agenda, while at times it is the other way around. Home and family serves at this time as the springboard to greater social and personal involvement. Mercury retrogrades two days later, on Sunday evening of the Labor Day weekend here in the states, and all bets are off concerning what might be concretely achieved for the remainder of the month. It could turn out fine, but things can also go awry, so that many will refuse to launch new projects during this period. The time of the Mercury retrograde is more conducive to introspection and reflection, also research and redefinition. It's a good time to mull things over, and not such a good time for sudden departures from an already-established plan. Of course, life goes on, and some decisions are unavoidable, but forewarned is forearmed. The Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, when Pluto also stations direct, will be an interesting time of recognition of the inherent limitations in what you are currently attempting. More and more as this first half of the month wears on, you are learning the value of compromise. The days surrounding the New Moon a week later, taking place on Friday, September 18th, which highlights the exact moment in this mid-month timeframe of the SaturnUranus opposition, constitutes another extremely key period when you are faced with the recognition that your ambitious social agenda must bow to the necessary limitations of the practical world, in spite of the strong conflicting urge to let caution fall away and cast your fate to the winds. This is an important time when much can however be accomplished, in spite of the Mercury retrograde period. The key is to hold steady to your ideals and not to switch plans to abruptly in midstream, although there will likely be that temptation. The last two weeks of the month are a time of reorientation and integration of the information from this crucial mid-month period.

Gemini Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
Mutable Air. Your ruling planet is Mercury.

Can you learn to live with paradox, Gemini, or are you going to insist on logic after all? Tangling with concerns of home and family you are stuck in some way and wanting to get unstuck, and yet also perhaps enjoying the conservative approach as a relief from the potential instability of constant change. Your ruler Mercury is retrograding through your self-expression sector and you might not be sure of anything until October. The unknown and uncertain might just have to be certainty enough for now. Are you an out-there brave explorer of the cosmos or unconcerned with the world outside as you settle into the safety of your den? The answer is a little of both.

As the month begins, you are in a transition period, heading toward the retrograde of your ruler Mercury in your self-expression sector, and yet also riding the wave of the New Moon from last August that stimulated communication and higher-mind activities. You have likely taken an optimistic stance lately regarding business opportunities and your outlook in general, and yet that hard-edged dose of reality keeps inserting a view of these matters that is less than encouraging. The polarity between vision and reality check is absolute and yet in the coming weeks must somehow be mediated. The Full Moon of Friday, September 4th, serves to highlight these differing approaches which are both nevertheless truly applicable. In terms of work priorities, you might be tempted to depart radically from previous moorings but then again you are also feeling cautious. What a conundrum, and the situation only exacerbates over the next two weeks, while Mercury retrogrades and Pluto also turns to direct motion in your sector of personal evolution. Mercury stations and begins reverse motion through early Libra in the days following the Full Moon. The Mercury retrograde period initiates a reflective period of time when research and redefining yourself prevails over direct action, especially action in very new and different directions. It is helpful at this time to stick to a plan that is already in place, if that is at all possible. Meanwhile, the tension between competing theories of wild-eyed risk taking and conservative caution remains. You must learn to live with the paradoxical mating of these two very different ideas, and steer a middle course through the shoals of these somewhat treacherous waters. The Last Quarter Moon that takes place in your sign on Friday, September 11th, is traditionally termed a "crisis in action," and serves to heighten the contrast and the stark nature of your choices. Hopefully you will have your ducks in a row from early in the month and keep them in line as this moment of relative tension in your process comes upon you. This need not be dire, especially if you keep your head and watch carefully for everything that happens, seeking the deeper meaning. A week later, the days surrounding the New Moon of Friday, September 18th, will be the climax of the push-pull of these separate energies. Although they incline you toward quite different directions, in consequence they stretch your capabilities. The final two weeks of the month will be devoted to digesting and integrating the information you receive over this crucial period; a time of growth and acceptance of change. It helps at least to be aware of what is coming down. You are attempting to integrate public and private at this time, and holding back versus going forward into a brave new world that beckons you onward. Of course the different energies within you are reflected in the planetary alignments – "as above, so below." These contrasting archetypal presences are equally inside you and are energies that must eventually be integrated in order that you may achieve peace of mind.

Cancer Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
Cardinal Water. Your ruling planet is TheMoon.

This is a month of exploration for you, Cancer, a but not necessarily one of complete connection with others around you. Communication is important to you now, but might also be somewhat shut down, creating a time and a space when introspection is the rule of the day. As you ponder the seemingly insoluble issues that currently encumber your life, the responsibility may make you want to fly away, to disappear from this world and pop out into a parallel universe on a far-distant shore of your own imagining. You are all these things, and more, simultaneously. Feeling the weight of the world, but equally able to get away into a universe of your own devising.

As the month begins, you are very aware of others in your world but also perhaps feeling the disconnection of settling into your own sphere, mediating your own sense of personal evolution. Your destiny is coming directly for you as it has for many weeks now and it is taking you quite literally out of this world. Communication with others around you is key, and takes on a serious cast of mind for you, but a joy also, as you explore new conceptual territory that could help to bridge the gap between business as depressingly usual and a brighter tomorrow. In this context, the Full Moon of the first weekend of the month, taking place on Friday, September 4th, comes as an opening for further revelation. Fresh perspectives, either from others around you or from the depths of your own process, are vital to you now. You are actively investigating the deepest reaches of your core beliefs and familial patterns at this time, trying to get a handle on the heart of the matter. The Last Quarter Moon that comes along a week later, on Friday, September 11th, happens after Mercury has begun to move backwards in your sector of your psychological roots. You are more introspective than ever at this time, tuned within and living life in the real world as a slim echo of your own deeply internal process. You are in touch with others primarily as a conduit to your own interior wisdom. You are coming to some important realizations about significant relationships in your life right now, and applying the information to yourself first and foremost. A week later, the New Moon in your communications sector, taking place on Friday, September 18th, brings new awareness along with it, perhaps in the form of potentially shattering insights that might be welcome, as a way of shaking off the conditioning of the past. This is a time of polarization, and of seeking its antidote in terms of compromise, however difficult that might be to contemplate or to achieve. Novel action is tempting and could be seen as a departure from everything that has come before, but the strong urge must also be honored to stay within your existing framework. Changing horses in mid-stream is definitely not recommended with Mercury still in retrograde, since things are likely to shift once more after the retrograde period has passed. This could be as late as the second week of October, when you count the period of Mercury's retrograde shadow. The First Quarter Moon that takes place another week further on, on Friday, September 25th, represents another opportunity for growth and for considered action. Although you want to move forward, you are still caught up in a period of mulling over your possibilities. Relationship dynamics are very much the subject of your meditations at this time, and you might be attempting to discern what of the past and how much of an intended future is truly viable. The last week of the month and on into October will be a time of consolidation and of rearranging the pieces of your life story in ways that include others as well as yourself. Awareness is everywhere increasing but perhaps nowhere so much as within your very own heart and mind.

Leo Leo (July 23 - August 22)
Fixed Fire. Your ruling planet is TheSun.

Time has come today, Leo, and the question is are you ready. A new universe is dawning over you. You are reinventing yourself, and your stand in this world, reviewing your commitments. Inevitably you are embodying a softer attitude both as a natural consequence of maturity and a result of planetary alignments that have been affecting you for many weeks now. Your personality is rounding out, as the stone is smoothed by the action of flowing water that it constantly engages. You might not measure the progress until one day after the end of the month you look back, and in a glorious instant you see how far you've come and how very distant is the memory of your former self.

As the month begins, you are full of the mystical madness that comes from intimate connection with yourself and others. This is a theme that will last the whole month, but which stems primarily from the last ten days of August when the New moon in your sign simultaneously set you up for self-discovery and relationship exploration. It's a good combination but one that you must be careful with right now, since partners in your life will be exhibiting their illusory and deceptive side to you at the same time as their compassion and their joy. It's up to you to decide which is which and it is good to remember that of course it always is up to you, now even more so. The Full Moon that comes along on the first Friday of the month, September 4th, will highlight these ideas and also issues of steadiness and immobility versus the opposite. In a way it's all about embracing instability right now as you reach for the tipping point that will take you through and into your next phase, and yet you must maintain a degree of conservative hanging on to what you already have. It's a mistake to abandon continuity with everything that has gone before. Mercury retrogrades in your communications sector two days later on Sunday evening of Labor Day weekend. Mercury's retrograde station might serve to remind you that the best information comes from deep inside you rather than from any outside source, even your loved ones. The Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, when Pluto also turns to direct motion, represents another occasion for sorting out truth from illusion. You need to sometimes ditch the concept of others' opinions and of consensus thinking in general. You are in a process these days of separating the wheat from the chaff, and of seeing clear through to the bottom of things no matter how potentially painful. Fears faced are stimulus to the warrior that lies within and painful imaginings are never as difficult when examined more closely. These themes all come to a head when the New Moon arrives a week later, taking place on Friday, September 18th. This is a fairly climactic time, when you must make some difficult choices, and when you will find that your salvation lies in somehow finding the middle ground between holding firm to your current track and blasting off into the unknown. You are operating in an energetic space that partakes of a little of both right now, and the remainder of the month will be devoted to exploring that space. In the end you might find yourself more ready to accept the mission that seems to be your assignment for the time being at least: to make the most of difficulties and limitations and to welcome the changes that they bring. You are in a process of rededication to your ultimate purpose in this life and must let absolutely nothing stand in the way of that.

Virgo Virgo (August 23 - September 22)
Mutable Earth. Your ruling planet is Mercury.

This is a good month Virgo, in spite of all appearances to the contrary. Through a combination of adversity, idealism and introspection, you are being asked to step up to the plate and take a swing at life and where it is currently leading you. You might have an easy time of it, especially if you have been doing your homework, or else more difficulty. In any case, adjustment is required; you could find yourself wrestling with helpful partners over the details. You have been sensing the drift over these past few weeks and the time has come for action, as you pursue an arc of development that is geared for you and you alone.

As the month begins, you are newly re-entering the world after some time away from it, at least mentally. The optimistic chick breaks the shell and steps forward on unsteady legs that are barely able to sustain its forward momentum. You have been in a largely internal space lately, and full of idealism and perhaps even fantasies of what you can become, and now is your chance to prove it. This month constitutes a very special time for you when you will wage exciting battles within you regarding issues of personal self versus enlightened other and also for holding on in spite of the urge for an idealistic springing forth into an uncertain future. The Full Moon in your opposite sign that comes on Friday, September 4th, will emphasize these ideas, and these themes will become more pronounced leading up to the mid-month New Moon. Along the way to that point, and only two days following the Full Moon, your ruler Mercury retrogrades on the evening of September 6th. At this time you will tend to feel not so much out there in the world but more internal. Communication is slowed, and you might find yourself mulling over your values and your situation in general. The energy that you have for relationship with others is also changing throughout the month, and during this week in particular, as Mercury is changing direction. The Last Quarter Moon comes along on Friday, September 11th. This is another powerful time for you, and could represent a moment of tension in your process when you are getting greater insight through more practical information concerning the current arc of your development. It now becomes important to assess the strength and the quality of important relationships or business partnerships in your life. Self-reliance is also emphasized. These themes return with even greater emphasis at the time of the New Moon in your sign that takes place on Friday, September 18th. This is traditionally a major fresh start, although with Mercury retrograding through your sign also, it is one that includes a large dose of looking backward. The roman god Janis, with forward- and backward-looking faces, in fact sums up your position quite well. Saturn is emphasized in your identity sector and is enjoining you to hold back, stay the course, avoid making any sudden moves, while Uranus in your opposite sign is urging you to break with all tradition including your own entrenched conditioning. Between them there is little room for compromise, but somehow you must find it. The last two weeks of the month will be a time when these contrasting ideas will continue to play themselves out. Meanwhile, with Mercury still in retrograde, you are well-advised not to push the river at this time, and to pay careful attention to everything that comes to you either from the agency of others or as a result of your own internal process. Your process is obviously an extremely powerful one right now. The phrase from poet Jennifer Wellwood might be very appropriate for you at this time: Willing to experience aloneness / I discover connection everywhere."

Libra Libra (September 23 - October 22)
Cardinal Air. Your ruling planet is Venus.

You are in rehearsal for the next phase of your career path, Libra. Introspection rules and while it does you are receiving epiphanies of where in your life you are going right now, and even why. As your vision creates a better future you find yourself in the midst of a tremendous process of review and renewal. This might be about neither vocation nor strictly avocation but a clever combination. Aiding you are flashes of inspiration that come more and more frequently now. These have the power to lift you out of the consensus mold. Pay close attention to everything that is happening to you. This is like a drug trip without the drugs, or a visit into outer space without the suit.

As the month begins you are riding the wave of the New Moon from the last ten days of August that energized your sector of societal connection and inhabited possibility. This makes for an energized period of time, but other planetary factors are conspiring to in conflict, which brings you to a more meditative space. You have in fact before you a month of contrasts. In one way, you are shooting the Moon, going for the gold ring, and it involves signing up for a future that you can really live with, but in another you are bound to be more reflective and introspective, especially after the sixth, when Mercury retrogrades in your sign. The Full Moon that comes along just two days before that, on Friday, September 4th, brings you to an interesting place of innovation and hopeful optimism for the future, and for finding your life's true purpose, while simultaneously sifting through the ashes of the past for what is of most value to you as you make your way forward. It's a case of three steps forward and two steps backward, perhaps, but in any case you must recognize that you cannot expect to make a complete break with the past even as you sail off into the unknown. With the Mercury retrograde period that begins at the end of the same weekend, you will be looking back as well as ahead, and mulling over your possibilities in an introspective way even as you continue to make plans for your departure from the old standards. The Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, holds out the possibility of further insights although some of these could be along the lines of where you will encounter limitations that will keep your ship from fully leaving the harbor just as you thought the voyage was about to begin. Courage in the face of fear may turn out to be your biggest friend and your most important product right now. The New Moon that comes along a week later, taking place on Friday, September 18th, will be a strong one for you, with a great emphasis on the past and on holding on, and plenty of spiritual component to it as well, as well as the impulse to move forward into a uniquely personal forward-looking path that represents your best understanding of what it is that you came into this life to fulfill. The remainder of the month will be a time of joy in the working out of these ideas, and perhaps also of struggle in actually manifesting them. With the First Quarter Moon of Friday, September 25th, a crux of some kind is likely to be reached. You are changing at the very core of your being and this month and also the next six weeks afterward, well into November, will be a powerful indication of this basic, and incredible, and largely inescapable reality.

Scorpio Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)
Fixed Water. Your ruling planets are Mars and Pluto.

You are quietly morphing, Scorpio. This month represents an introspective time, when you might find both satisfaction and also dissatisfaction with the way that things are with you. The good news is that you have the power of imagination that can take you out of your everyday world in an instant, leading to a powerful opportunity to make needed course corrections. As the cycle unfolds you will begin to fly your true colors, although the final denouement might have to wait until after the end of the month. You are deadly serious at this time about making a difference in the world, and the world in turn makes a difference in you.

As the month begins, you are mulling over your condition, wondering where in the world your life might be taking you at this juncture. You are finding both confusion and an abiding sense of spiritual presence that comes from looking more deeply within yourself. As you emerge from what has been in many ways a difficult summer, especially in terms of clarity of purpose, you nevertheless can count up the rewards also that stem from these last few weeks and months; better bonds perhaps with family and loved ones and tribal connection everywhere. Now you are concerned with plugging yourself into society in some very new and different ways as the result of these blessings. The Full Moon that comes along in the first weekend of the month, on Friday, September 4th, brings an innovative sense of possibility into the picture that might contrast with a serious sense of purpose that sees the limitations rather than the freedom from restriction that is also an important part of your makeup right now. You are seeing the world a bit differently these days and that process will continue over the next few weeks and on into October. When Mercury retrogrades just two days later in your sector of societal connection it inclines you toward review and redefinition of what you are attempting in this current cycle. The Mercury retrograde period lasts at least through to the end of the month and is a better time for reflection and revisiting existing plans than for making brand new ones. The Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, also contains within it the seed of great changes in your consciousness. You are seeing more clearly than before what does and doesn't work for you right now, and experiencing the contrast between jumping ahead with brave schemes versus staying the course of a preexisting arrangement. This contrast is even more evident with the New Moon of Friday, September 18th, when Saturn opposes Uranus almost exactly, and when their competing archetypal energies suggest both the conservative and the innovative approach. There is no easy compromise, yet it is important to attempt to integrate these antithetical energies as you work through this alignment over the remaining two weeks of the month. Balance is the key. You are definitely educating yourself over this current monthly cycle and constantly reformulating your point of view. New ways of seeing can bring solutions where none was earlier to be found. The influence of Spirit is also all-important, as the final weekend of the month will undoubtedly reveal to you. The universe routinely makes a way out of no way, and this talent is yours to enjoy and to employ when you fully open your heart and mind to accept it.

Sagittarius Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)
Mutable Fire. Your ruling planet is Jupiter.

It's an exciting time to be alive, Sagittarius, although it might also be something of a conundrum where and how to put your energy to the best advantage. This month you are feeling career pressure as you have for weeks now, and have the decision to make of whether to continue to plunge full-force into your outer world presentation or to take a softer and more studied approach relating more to private than to public life. Steering between these choices will prove the most rewarding. Since other points of view are welcome additions to your own right now, communication is the name of your game as you deal with these and other issues.

As the month begins, you find yourself entering into a new way of seeing and thinking about the world around you. Communication is spiritual and special right now, and may reveal cracks in your armor. If you choose to utilize these sorts of glitches to your ultimate benefit, you can make progress on a variety of issues that might have been holding you back from more whole-hearted participation in life, so that there is a plus side that should not be overlooked. This month is a time of particular interest, since the planets are conspiring to provide us with some much-needed lessons. The Full Moon that comes along on Friday, September 4th, leads you into a two-week period of time that is crucially significant. You are mediating between concerns of public and private, and also of letting go and holding on. Perhaps you feel stuck with too much work and are looking for a wild way to free yourself from the inside out. Or you could be feeling the instability of too much freedom and seeking a more practical and grounded sense of mission, or many other variations including one that could be labeled "all of the above." When Mercury retrogrades two days after the Full Moon in your sector of societal connection you will be considering all these possibilities as you mull over your choices. The retrograde period, which lasts through the end of the month and even into October, is great for reflection and rethinking, or even redefining, your situation, not so good for forging ahead with new plans. The Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th represents a moment of tension in your process, a time of renewed contrast between work that conservatively holds your position versus more innovative approaches. Your communication at this time is enhanced and enthusiastic, and may serve to connect you with the necessary viewpoints of others around you. One week later, when the New Moon comes along, on Friday, September 18th, it brings in fresh energy with it and also more hard work, as your choices become starker and perhaps more highly conflicted. On the other hand you have a better chance to concretely realize important goals. Over the next two weeks, as you begin to work out the impulse from this important mid-month period, it pays also to remember that Mercury is still retrograde, so that entirely new directions are contraindicated. It is best not to push the river at this time, but to watch and wait, preferring to reflect and research and to delay radical departures until well into October.

Capricorn Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)
Cardinal Earth. Your ruling planet is Saturn.

This is a powerful month for you, Capricorn, in the midst of a powerful year. As you find yourself reaching for the gold ring that comes from deep inside yourself, some level of new information that is coming your way right now will likely rock your world. This is not necessarily a bad thing as you could be in need of a shakeup. Active partners in your life are also claiming a piece of your turf and you find yourself reaching for a point of balance. Everything is truly all right. It's a big bold beautiful world out there and it's waiting for you to notice. You only have to turn your head slightly to see it.

As the month begins, you are forging new territory within your mind and heart. New conceptual frontiers are awaiting you in the course of this month's important cycle, and might even take the form of physical travel or else of the armchair variety. This is a climactic period of time in which you will likely come to terms with conditions and perceptions that have been building up for some time now. The Full Moon that comes along on Friday, September 4th, begins an intense two-to-three week period that will put you in a different mode operation by the time the month is over. Mental conception leads the way for the reality train to follow. You are facing others in a new light at this time, brought on in part by amazing information that has been subtle or perhaps more obvious for several weeks now, but which reaches new heights of directness over this timeframe. Mercury retrogrades two days later, in the late evening of Sunday, September 6th, and everything that you do out in the world becomes called into question, as you make a move to a more internal and introspective process. You are seeking answers to the riddle of your life right now and perhaps even finding them. Your process increases in intensity with the Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, which has been traditionally referred to as a "crisis of consciousness" and when Pluto also stations powerfully in your sign. Your awareness is blossoming over this time period, no doubt about it, and to a greater or a lesser extent depending on how open you are to receiving the wisdom flowing out to you from the universe of possibility deep inside. This is a time of increased tension and of breaking into new territory versus staying with old tried and true methods and patterns of existence that have served you well for so long. This is naturally a difficult series of choices to make, but the recommendation at this time is that you not completely abandon previous foundations, especially in light of the Mercury retrograde period which is better for reflection and research into possible new pathways than for actually taking them. This lasts through to the end of the month, and beyond; to mid-October when you take the two weeks of the retrograde shadow into account. The New Moon of Friday, September 18th, signals a time when nothing is left unaltered and when everything somehow also stays the same. You are mediating between perceived polarities at this important juncture and for the remainder of the month. The First Quarter Moon of the 25th will be a crucial passage, when it will become much clearer what portion of what you are attempting is truly viable. You are striving to find a middle ground that takes multiple viewpoints into account, allowing the fresh concept to have sway without abandoning prior principles. Your task over these final two weeks is to work out how this concretely manifests in your own particular situation.

Aquarius Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
Fixed Air. Your ruling planets are Uranus and Saturn.

This is a magical and a frustrating time for you right now, Aquarius, when you are coming into yourself anew. One way to think about this is that your natural rebel needs and wants more stability. It's time to get a trim and to allow scope to your more considered and conservative self that has been waiting there all along in the wings. The other idea is the polar opposite, that you are learning more and more to think outside the box and to color outside the lines. Your process, which is a process of becoming more whole, demands that you move in the direction of your most unaccustomed and secretly fearful attributes.

As the month begins, you are defining yourself to some extent through relationship with others, although it is important to recognize that it is yourself that you are ultimately seeking and also working through, as much as that process might appear to be cloaked in the form of encounters with significant persons in your life. This has been a tricky and in some ways a deceptive time over the past few weeks and months, with mystical Neptune powerfully configured in your identity sector. The archetypal energy of Neptune wears many masks, among them a positive feeling of spiritual necessity to everything that you do; you just cannot be satisfied with superficial explanations or motivations any longer. But another side of Neptune is that you are coming at the world from a very idealistic and almost illusory viewpoint, so that you might be able to not only be deceived, but also to deceive yourself and others. An antidote exists in the form of Saturn, representing the strictures of practical necessity, which has in recent days been coming more and more to the fore. This month represents one climax of this balancing factor, and puts you in a position of choosing either idealism or practicality, or better yet, finding a middle ground to explore that lies between them. The Full Moon of Friday, September 4th, brings these concepts to an even greater pitch and serves to remind you once again that personal transformation while connected with significant partners begins at home. You are well aware of the impact of others on your life at this time, and their contribution cannot be at all discounted, but role might also be somewhat illusory and in any case depends on your own lens that filters their influence. The Last Quarter Moon takes place a week later, on Friday, September 11th, and is also powerful in regard to these issues. At this point Mercury is also retrograde, from the 6th, and you might be spending more time in contemplation of what is going on than in direct action. The period of the retrograde lasts until at least the end of the month and is an excellent time for journaling, but not such a good time for sudden departures from an established plan. In all these patterns you will feel the strong influence of Saturn in your sector of intimacy and personal evolution, which serves to remind you of limits and restrictions but which also imposes positive gains in terms of lessons learned and long-lasting results. With the advent of the New Moon one more week further on, taking place on Friday, September 18th, you will experience an even more powerful presence of the practical limitations of Saturn and in contrast your own sense of individuality rising to meet it. The days surrounding this mid-month configuration constitute the crucial time of this entire monthly cycle, so that a supreme effort at balance is not only helpful but required. The final two weeks of the month represent a working out of these issues and of coming to better terms with your fate. Nothing however is fated, an important distinction. Free will still achieves a version of the outcome you desire but only by acting in collusion with the forces of the universe which incline you in particular directions. Everything turns out for the best when you remember to rely at the most basic level on Spirit working through you. Not the best possible result, perhaps, but the best result possible.

Pisces Pisces (February 19 - March 20)
Mutable Water. Your ruling planets are Neptune and Jupiter.

This is the crucial moment in a series of life events that has been building up for your next phase, Pisces. You are in the roller-coaster and just starting to descend. Relationship may well provide some of the thrills and spills as you negotiate the rebellion against your inner critic. Although you have a built-in safety valve of escape into your inner world, all this could manifest as trouble with others. You could on the other hand decide to recognize your life right now as one big projection, and perhaps that is the saner approach. The critical voice and the one who rebels, they are both inside you, and both valuable in the long run. As the poet says, you contain multitudes.

As the month begins, you are focused to a greater or a lesser extent upon relationship with others. You are also strong on service at this time, and on being helpful, and this could easily spill over into relationship territory. The trick of course is that this helpful nature not exhibit itself as martyrdom. In some ways this period could be a time of testing for primary relationships in your life. You are also full of a sense of your own individuality, so that balance and integration is required in order to handle it. The archetypal energy of Saturn in your relationship sector means that there will be a feeling of slowing down in that department but also a sense of wisdom gained and a greater degree of bonding. The Full Moon in your sign on the first Friday of the month, September 4th, highlights both optimism and the awareness of practical limitation which is also very much present through this month, especially regarding connection with significant others in your life. Mercury retrogrades in Libra a mere two days later, on the Sunday evening of Labor Day weekend, and you could find yourself reexamining relationships and their consequences for you. You are already in the midst of a fairly introspective spring and summer, so the change from outer concerns to inner is not as great as it would otherwise be. A week after the Full Moon, the Last Quarter Moon of Friday, September 11th, is also an important turning point. There could be an increase of tension in the air, but also powerful resolution. Awareness always results from conflicts when they are examined with the careful eye of reflection. Another week later, the New Moon of Friday, September 18th, is likely to bring all the issues of the preceding weeks into a different and perhaps more extreme alignment. The final two weeks of the month will in fact be spent in playing out the energies of this important mid-month moment. The crucial days surrounding the New Moon can be a confusing as well as an illuminating time, when the urge to go off in your own unique direction is matched by an equally strong desire to stay in existing tracks and to accept the necessary compromise of working with others. Between these alternatives there is no real middle ground, and yet a delicate balance must somehow be struck. Similarly, a polarity is invoked between staying settled in what might be an all-to-comfortable rut versus moving forward with bold steps toward an uncertain future. It's important to take the nature of the Mercury retrograde period into account as well, remembering that sudden departures into new directions are not recommended at this time, and that such deviations from a pre-existing plan are almost guaranteed to be differently constituted once the period of the retrograde has passed, in the opening weeks of October. In any case it is best to keep your wits about you and to carefully examine your choices, and as always to look before you leap.