In our lives there are times of abundant harvest, times of cold winter, of exuberant blossoming and of cautious contraction. As we pass through these seasons, so do our relationships – with each other, with lovers, with family, with friends, and with the circumstances of the life worlds we inhabit.
To navigate these transient time periods with ease, is to remain open and flexible as we stand at these ever-shifting intersections between us… and everything and everyone else who meets us at our edges.
Eclipse Season is wrapping up. Although some consider Eclipse Season to officially end when we reach the next new moon (in September), as the Sun moves further away from the nodal axis, those edgy, heated eclipse season dynamics begin to dissipate.
If the whispers – or thundering voice – of change has arrived in your life this summer, this week offers some gentle prompts to allow those inner shifts to ripple out and begin redefining and adjusting the way you interact with your environment, and everything and everyone in it.
There are no major transits until the WEEKEND, but from MONDAY to FRIDAY we are working with the practical magic of a grand earth trine between Pluto, Ceres and Juno.
In brief, Pluto is the underworld deity who calls for transformation via letting go of old attachments and old ways of being in the world. Ceres is a mothering, nurturing archetype who has jurisdiction over the natural cycles of life, and Juno is a goddess associated with partnership, faithfulness and commitment.
This trio, in subtle ways, may correlate with some realistic relational re-assessments, some intentional and careful conversations, and some tangible collaborative outcomes.
The Moon plays along with this relational story line as it punctuates the week with a conjunction to Venus, planet of love and connection in Libra, the sign she rules, on TUESDAY. And then on FRIDAY, as Pluto perfects its trine to Juno, the Moon unites with Jupiter in Scorpio for some deepening, expanding heart-felt vulnerable and authentic connection.
Ceres (Demeter to the Greeks) was the mother of Persephone. When Pluto (the god of the Underworld) kidnapped Persephone to be his wife, Ceres as the grain goddess, in her grief and rage, brought famine to the land.
Jupiter (i.e. Zeus) eventually intervened. Pluto was ordered to release Persephone. However, before she left his domain, Persephone was tricked into eating several pomegranate seeds Pluto offered her. This cemented their union. As a result, Ceres and Pluto had to strike a compromise – basically a warped joint custody situation.
Persephone would split the year between the two of them. When Persephone was on land with her mother Ceres, Ceres blessed the land with abundant harvest. When Persephone returned to the Underworld, the land echoed Ceres’ loss by refusing to bear fruit – thus providing a mythic framework for the changing of seasons, forever repeating its death and rebirth cycle. Demetra George calls this a story of “loss and return.”
As Pluto and Ceres, these two ancient enemies, interact with each other in the sky this week through a gentle, agreeable trine, how might this archetypal story be playing out in our lives?
In what ways, might our relationship to food, to self-care, to nurturing, to mothering roles and mother-type identities… be undergoing a transformation? What change of season might we be accommodating in our inner landscape? How are we processing and channeling our rage and anger at betrayal or violence done to others? And how might the shape and weight of our grief be shifting once again?
Have you been following the story of the Orca whale off the coast of British Colombia?
It has gutted me. The whale’s baby calf, a new member of an endangered species, died on July 24th, right in the thick of eclipse season. For a record 17 days and 1,000 miles, ‘Tahlequah’ carried the corpse of the baby calf on her body, using her precious strength to hold it above the water, balancing it on her nose. When she grew tired, other members of the whale pod helped Tahlequah bear her burden of grief by taking turns carrying the dead baby.
Artist Lori Christopher has so beautifully captured this heart-wrenching story in her painting:
Last Saturday, the day of the Solar Eclipse in Leo, Tahlequah was observed without her baby.
Her 17-day mourning ritual appears to have ended.
The Center for Whale Research’s website reported that Tahlequah “vigorously chased a school of salmon with her pod-mates… for a half mile – no longer carrying the deceased baby that she had carried for at least seventeen days and 1,000 miles. Her tour of grief is now over and her behavior is remarkably frisky.”
Perhaps ‘Spring’ has arrived again for Tahlequah in some way.
As Pluto was perfecting its trine to Ceres, the mythic story a mother’s deep grief and mourning, could not have been more vividly presented to the world.
Ceres is a Mother Earth figure. She reminds us of our interconnected ecosystem; that harm done to planet Earth and its creatures, harms us all.
How much pollution can the world handle before all the whales surrender? How much destruction can this Earth absorb before it refuses to produce a harvest? Ceres’ tale, Tahlequah’s tale, is one of caution that we should listen to if we want Spring and the birth of new life to survive the world’s dark appetites and greed, which threaten to consume it forever.
In our own personal lives this week, we can also ask ourselves what needs more care, what needs more nurturing, what grief needs to be further expressed, witnessed, or carried.
Juno’s participation in this grand earth trine, from her position in Taurus, brings our agreements, commitments and partnerships into the dynamic of cleansing cycles – of nurturing, grieving, loss and renewal.
As the faithful sister-wife of Jupiter, Juno stands for agreements or relationships that are in it for the long haul – the impressive capacity to weather the storms of life and adapt to the ever shifting shapes of love and partnership (of all types). And yet her trine to Pluto asks that truth and authenticity must prevail – the longevity of commitment is not the ultimate prize, rather it is honesty, respect, trust and balanced reciprocity which is worth our investment. Honouring this may mean loosening the bonds of our agreements.
Perhaps a relationship is ready to gain another multi-faceted dimension, to transform its shape. No relationship is ever static.
Juno’s trine to Ceres could bring up overlapping mothering and partnership themes for those of you for whom it is relevant. For others, perhaps we are asked to review our self-care commitments… or to reflect on those people in our life we feel committed to accompanying through life’s more difficult journeys, once the flowers fade (and vice versa).
SATURDAY’s First Quarter Moon in Scorpio brings some intense twists and turns as it confronts us with a doorway to the future, unlocked only by courage, truth and vulnerability.
Mercury Stations Direct in Leo on the WEEKEND (late Saturday or early Sunday, for many of you), while in a sweet sextile to Venus in Libra. This pivot configuration reminds me of the grace of a ballerina’s pirouette. At the same time, the ethereal sounds of our final Jupiter-Neptune trine fill the air, accompanying Mercury’s spellbinding dance moves.
Fiiiiinally, like the stubborn jar lid that finally breaks its air-tight seal beneath your tight grip, something Mercurial that has been stalled, or hovering unseen for the last few weeks, finally slides forward into the light with well-oiled ease. Crucial insights, important conversations, vital information, and long-awaited decisions may all pirouette into our life this weekend.
The slow-moving idealistic and visionary Jupiter-Neptune trine has been one of the trademark grand aspects of late 2017 – 2018. Subtle, slippery, diffuse, and ethereal, this magic-weaving, hopeful bubble of (sometimes escapist) bliss may have gone unnoticed at times, but it alights on this week with its full potency, offering us a moment of spiritual surrender and compassionate embrace.
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