Astrology of October 2011
by Henry Seltzer (
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The Astrology of October features Saturn, Uranus and Pluto, plus Chiron. This is a powerful month for change, based on the Libra New Moon from the end of September that conjoined Mercury and formed a T-Square with Uranus and Pluto. We are urged to transform, in ourselves and in our thinking, like it or not, and whether we think that we are ready for it or not, and we will eventually come to see the advantages of moving forward thus with our lives.

Mercury is also prominent in this month’s configurations, since it almost exactly opposes Uranus at the time of the New Moon and is also exactly parallel with Uranus. Visionary ideas and startling epiphanies could well come to light over the course of this month’s cycle, while a series of surprising turns of events is also more than likely with their consequent opportunities for enlightenment. The intelligence that we receive in this way, rather than being dismissed as illogical, might need to be allowed to absorb in a kind of spiritual osmosis whereby this unexpected and powerful information can be allowed settle, via an act of cosmic grace, into our very being.

Saturn is also strongly configured in this month’s lunations, being in parallel and conjunct Venus at the time of the New Moon, and is also in parallel with Chiron. Saturn is also conjunct the Sun and opposed by the Moon at the time of the Full Moon on the October 11th. Saturn with Chiron brings up once more, as it did last month also, the wound of misplaced authority. This is therefore a time when we question whether the authority figures that influence us in our adult lives are in fact acting in our own best interest. Our fears in this regard are based on early childhood trauma with parental authority that we found not fully functional. By a process of introspection we come to accept outside authority as in fact beneficial as well as suspect. When Saturn comes up it is not necessarily negative. Although we are facing inherent limitations in what we are about, and taking on a conservative thrust of mind, we need also to acknowledge that limitation is an important part of life and that the intelligent conservation of resources and of time and money might turn out to be crucial to our survival in this pivotal decade.

Uranus and Pluto are the big news this month; still within close orb of their square, and that square is powerfully triggered and highlighted by the Libra New Moon that guides the unfolding events of this month’s cycle. We feel the evolutionary pull toward an unknown future, and this is of course scary. But choosing to move forward nevertheless remains safer than continuing as we are, since we are essentially moving toward the true purpose of our Higher Selves. We are tempted to resist this evolutionary pull; the familiar is always more comforting than the unknown. We must however recognize what would be in our actual best long-term interest, and this enables us to have the courage to go ahead. We go stumbling and slow, or as singer-songwriter Sarah McLachlan puts it – fumbling towards ecstasy. We honor our own best interest but only in fits and starts, not as consistently as we would like. However we do it and we benefit from accepting what is.

October 3rd First Quarter Moon First Quarter Moon Chart
This First Quarter Moon of Monday, October 3rd, coming as it does one week after the blazingly intense New Moon of September 27th – which closely aspected the potent Uranus-Pluto square – is therefore another important milestone, when we will be caught up in evaluating the arc of development that was launched during that powerfully initiatory time. This phase is traditionally a crossroads, a place of trial where the drawbacks as well as the benefits of our course of action become tested in the fires of actual implementation. The young shoot that was planted in the fecund moment of the New Moon pokes its head up above the ground, and being vulnerable might well succumb to the various dangers lurking in what astrologer Antero Ali calls “the horizontal feeding frenzy of the urban jungle.”

This particular First Quarter Moon continues the theme of transformation that was re-affirmed at the beginning of the cycle with its highlighting of Uranus-Pluto. At this second juncture Pluto rather Uranus is emphasized. The Moon squaring the Sun is widely conjunct Pluto in Capricorn, and is inconjunct Mars in Leo, which in turn makes a contra-parallel and a bi-quintile aspect to Pluto. Mars with Pluto takes us, on its lower plane of manifestation, to acting out perhaps violently the bottled-up frustrations of nearly a lifetime of restraint, and on the high road, to revolutionary/evolutionary exploits in our own best interest. We need a jolt sometimes to get off the dime and begin to take action, and this configuration might just supply that push.

Meanwhile there is plenty of Saturn in the picture as well, with its dour vibration of limitation. Saturn remains exactly parallel to Chiron, while Mercury moves into orb with a parallel to them both and a conjunction to Saturn that continues over the next few days. We will be more sober-minded than usual and more serious about the possibility of making profound change in our lives actually happen. Thus change takes place in a context that in spite of all the current spaciness provided by Uranus and Neptune remains somewhat grounded in its reality orientation. The sensitive ones are the most affected. We all will feel to some degree the pull of evolutionary progress toward a better world. Like everyone you will have a lot to do over the next few years in order to begin to erase decades of neglect and to help to emerge from its present dysfunctional condition the society that we make our home in and that has its basis in each one of us.

October 11th Full Moon Full Moon Chart

The Aries Full Moon taking place on Tuesday evening, October 11th, comes as the fulfillment of a particularly important cycle. Now is the time in the lunation cycle when we get to see the full flowering of what was begun with such high hopes and that has been moving through the world and through us as well during the two weeks since the surge of these ideas. The New Moon of September that began the cycle formed a T-square with Uranus and Pluto representing revolutionary ardor, and now the Sun of this Full Moon almost exactly conjuncts Saturn as well. Therefore this Full Moon makes a T-square by sign, although not by exact aspect, that once again includes Saturn as an important part of the mix. This inevitably brings up the divisiveness and polarization that we saw over the summer months, and that might now in national news be represented as a backlash to the revolutionary impulse represented by the ”Occupy Wall Street” movement that has been gaining momentum since mid-September.

Since the Moon also conjuncts Eris we might see an embattled warrior energy emerging to confront these stifling and stultifying responses. There is also a way that the energy of Saturn represents a grounding momentum that actually helps to establish important changes for our own best interest that are taking place within the life of the society and within us as well. We might want to ask what in our personal lives partakes of this same revolutionary and evolutionary impulse, how we are seeing the limitations as well as the advantages of what we have begun, and how and where we are taking a stand for what we truly believe.

As we move through yet another powerful month leading up to 2012 we cannot help but be aware that our civilization is radically changing and we ourselves along with it. There is also likely to be some fearful moments as this mid-month period commences, since Saturn can represent fear Š and that fear might be one concomitant reaction to the chaos of our times. We work through this fear when we can recognize it for what it is, and distinguish it from principled considerations of caution, moving ahead with our lives as we must. Everything is transforming now, and transforming rather rapidly, and we win when we can discern the flow of history and align ourselves with that flow.

October 19th Last Quarter Moon Last Quarter Moon Chart
The Last Quarter Moon taking place on Wednesday, October 19, represents a time of contemplation, a pause amidst the maelstrom of events and realizations that have been the norm over the past three weeks of this powerful cycle. This phase of the lunation cycle is a time when we take stock of what has been occurring in our lives and attempt to make sense of it all, distilling what we can into the seed of wisdom with which we begin the next cycle, kicked off by the Scorpio New Moon later in the month. Meanwhile, Uranus and Pluto remain within a few degrees of a perfect square with each other, and Jupiter retrogrades into aspect with first Pluto and then Uranus before turning to direct motion in late December. As Jupiter moves into a trine with Pluto, the Sun and Moon positively aspect Neptune, currently in the last degrees of Aquarius, bringing a strong hit of idealism into the picture. Mars is also emphasized in this configuration by its aspects from Mercury and Venus, as he makes a sesquiquadrate to both Uranus and Pluto, highlighting the concept of action as well as of contemplation.

At this important juncture, the Sun and Moon, in square with each other, occupy the 27th degree of Libra and of Cancer respectively. The Sabian symbols for these degrees are revealing: ”An airplane hovering in the clear sky” and, for the Moon, ”A storm in a canyon.” Marc Edmond Jones gives as his keyword for the first symbol as Reflection, while Dane Rudhyar speaks of Transcendent Realization, and indeed it is a time and past time to think our way through the crisis of the present moment. Only by an increase in consciousness will the future be saved. The concentration of energy represented by the second symbol of a storm flooding through a narrow canyon speaks to the intensity of these climactic days leading up to 2012. Our actions need to count now for the leisure of hesitation is rapidly passing.

These ideas apply to the transformation of the collective that we live in, as the Uranus-Pluto square nears its first exact completion – in of next year – and to our personal lives as well. We are on the cusp of change, as a society and as individual members of that society, and our actions must be carefully considered for they are crucial to the eventual outcome that we seek. Gandhi perhaps said it best, and it rings even truer today: Be yourself the change that you look for in the world around you, and do not vacillate or wait for someone else to take up the challenge.

October 26th New Moon New Moon Chart
The Scorpio New Moon takes place in the mid-afternoon of Wednesday, the 26th. This latest in the recent series of powerful late month New Moons has in common with all the rest that it stimulates the UranusPluto square that is characteristic of these revolutionary times and that is due to make its first exact completion by June. This square is waning slightly over these next few months, but it still packs plenty of punch – as testified by world events including the Occupy Wall Street movement. The New Moon, at 3 plus degrees of Scorpio, sextiles Pluto and makes an inconjunct aspect to Uranus, as their square settles down to a more sedate 4 degrees off of exact. Meanwhile Jupiter, retrograde in Taurus and with the New Moon closely opposed in Scorpio, makes an exact trine to Pluto, highlighting in a more peaceful way the transformational quality of these times. Thus the beat for change continues both in our own lives and within the collective that surrounds us. We might expect to see some further resolution as well as strengthening of the basic underlying theme of conflict and resolution of that conflict in concerted action for change, with perhaps also a generally happier trend in the mass societal metamorphosis that we are all to some extent a part of.

In this dynamic New Moon configuration, also, Mercury is in close parallel to Pluto, and is also now in conjunction with Venus, which remains true throughout most of the following month. Mercury with Pluto and with Venus reminds us that we can use the powers of the mind for connection as well as for mental gymnastics that have a tendency toward separation, and in addition to colder logic, for philosophically arrived-at closeness with others. As Ben Franklin put it so well, many years ago during the difficult days of a very different American revolution: ”We must all hang together now, or most assuredly we will all hang separately.”

Since the Sun is also parallel to Neptune, the three outer planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are all powerful factors at the time of this New Moon. We are caught in the tides of change, and idealistic imagination is one key to working our way out of it. Another is simply to go with the flow; to recognize, in other words, that our best interest lies in seeing the evolutionary path that the society and as well our individual lives are taking, and to go that direction. There’s no time like the present for seizing the opportunity presented to us for positive change, and at this critical juncture there is also no reward for stalling the wheels of progress.