There is a lot going on this month, with one theme being light and shadows. We start out with Venus halfway through its retrograde in Gemini, which dominates the month, but has plenty of company to stir things up. Venus retrograde, Austin Coppock tells us, will be indicative of the economy. “Venus gives sugar or sweet returns on what seems like profits, yet it is not an indicator of a stable pattern to come. Instead, it turns out to be an aberration.” By the end of the month, Kelly adds, “We’re going to see some truths that will indicate this almost idyllic wishfulness is absolutely unsubstantiated.”
Those who make astrological comparisons regarding Venus retrogrades say that sometimes during these periods, there are riots and racial tension. One of the more positive manifestations of Venus retrograde, Chris Brennan points out, can be “challenging consensus” in which “reality needs to be challenged in order to change or revise an injustice.” With the Venus retrograde happening in Gemini—ruled by Mercury, representing the media and communication—Kelly adds “I wonder if it just brings it to a wider audience,” things that parts of the population experience, or fear, every day.
Chris Brennan summarizes Venus retrograde and the other planetary interactions in June by saying, “Everything that takes place in the first week or two of June could potentially come back and need to be revisited at some point at a later date.” Austin chimes in that “We have not even remotely seen the economic consequences of our situation. It is a little bit like a nuke that went off 50 miles away. You can see the brilliant flash of light on the horizon, but the blast wave has not hit yet, and the blast is economic.” He sees two such waves coming –one beginning at the end of June and continuing through the first 10 days of July, and the other one in September. While there are a lot of good things about this Venus retrograde period, like having a fun night by yourself, enjoying a walk in nature, or growing flowers, Austin says, it is not the time to start a business or a foundation. This is just an upbeat break in the heaviness around us—eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow, well…we face more challenges.
The fact is if we learn our lessons and we do the work we can do now, then we will come out of this wiser than when we went into it, and we can alter the direction of the ship…to get it off of its previously obvious collision course.-Rick Levine
Venus is not the only planet that is retrograde. As June begins, we have Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto all moving retrograde. By mid-June, Mercury will be heading into its own retrograde phase, but even by June 1 it is in “shadow,” meaning it is visually slowing down compared to earth and will be moving backwards through the zodiac in the sky by week 3. Rick Levine says with all the retrograde planets, “We are in a remedial review class for what we have not gotten right. We have to go back through class”—our astrological summer school. He reminds us that Venus has been challenged by Neptune and will continue to be into July, which means we will be uncertain or confused about what is true and what is not and where we are going based on our fantasies and dreams about how we would like things to be.
In her presentation with the Water Trio, Cass Tyndall notes that with the moon’s nodes (which determine the pattern of eclipses) having shifted last month from Cancer/ Capricorn to Gemini/Sagittarius, there is a shift in tone this month for what 2020 is bringing us—from earth to air. Even more focus will be on air by the end of the year when Jupiter and Saturn go into the air sign of Aquarius and meet up together on December 21, the winter solstice. (Saturn is in Aquarius now, but it is heading back to Capricorn to check on a few things). Capricorn, an earth sign, is the view from the ground, structures we build, the real world up close, the hard work and discipline while air signs focus on thoughts, ideas, the mind, and on the collective social community, bringing inspiration and seeing the bigger picture. This is where we are headed, but getting there may be a hard climb. Key planets and the south node have already left, and continue to leave Capricorn—and it is all pointing to air, learning, ideas, and communication.
Rick Levine tells us the month starts off with a false sense of hope and optimism because of a challenging angle between the sun and Jupiter. It may be making things look too good, and we need to pay attention not to over-inflate how good the news is.
Venus and Mars have been flirting with each other, and now they have finally formed a square angle, but it is challenging. Venus is what we like, Mars is how we get it. “When Venus and Mars connect, there is action and sparks,” Levine tells us. It can be a lover’s spat and make-up sex, or it can be an explosive, feisty, playful energy that turns serious. Very dynamic stress between the two planets to figure out how to get what we want, and in some cases the stress can result in “ego skirmishes.” Or it can be wonderful love and amazing creativity.
Austin notes that Mars in Pisces (moving to meet up with Neptune this month) has a temporarily less aggressive vibe, and when attacks occur, they will tend to be more subtle, more passive-aggressive, and more indirect, OR occasionally just nuts and delusional—an anger or attack (Mars) that is confused and based on fantasy (Neptune).
Acyuta-bhava says that Mars moving through Pisces can bring legal conflict and this year, based on other planetary symbolism and angles, can have the potential for paradigm shifts and conflicts, political and ideological debates, as well as legal challenges and ramifications.
On June 3rd, Venus meets up with the sun making a Cazimi aspect, in which Venus disappears into the sun’s light and then becomes the morning star. As a result, Acyuta-bhava tells us that Venus becomes more yang, or expressive, as it is infused with solar energy. Remember that Venus is the planet of harmony, beauty, friendship, love, artistic creation, design, and values, and these are the traits he says will be strong. “People become enthusiastic or gripped by this energy,” and it is a buffer for the full moon lunar eclipse on the 5th.
Alicia Yusuf of the Water Trio says that as the sun shines a light on Venus, it is lifted up and she is the favorite. Our priorities become really clear to us, and “those things we value, those things we really care about, those things will become really clear in this cycle. It is almost through what we have lost or had to let go of that what we want to keep becomes clear.” It moves us into a new cycle of maturity as this is the point of purification. Kelly adds, “You gained some piece of wisdom or knowledge that will guide and inform you as you go forward,” but it may be three-to-four weeks before it is acted on.
But as they connect, the sun joins Venus in a challenging angle to Mars, and that brings a whole new energy to the mix. Levine describes the details of the energies of the planets, with the sun highlighting the Venus creativity and beauty. “It is a powerful few days when it comes to doing anything creative,” he says, saying to bring creative energy into this difficult configuration.
He explains that the sun at this challenging angle to mars can bring out resentments that have built over time, and with Venus there, it could relate to pleasure (a jealous partner, perhaps, or a competition among performers, musicians or creative artists). While there are times to protect what we have or stake a claim to our own space, Levine says, “we can get into situations of fighting for no apparent reason and get sucked into an ego skirmish that gets blown out of proportion. His advice? “Pay attention not to do anything we will regret in an hour” and find ways to defend a position in a way that is kind and compassionate rather than with misplaced hate or anger. Mars in Pisces, after all, is the compassionate warrior, not just the warrior who takes on the opponent just for the thrill of victory (though, that may be looming on the horizon).
A quick aspect forms between Mercury and Chiron, which Levine tells us has the potential for healing, as well as for wounding if we do not express what we need to express in a kind, compassionate and diplomatic way.
FULL MOON LUNAR ECLIPSE
Part of the light and shadow theme has to do with two eclipses occurring this month and a third in early July. Austin notes that the second one in June, on the summer solstice, will be as strong as you can get, which means the two eclipses on either side of it (June 5 and July 5) will be weaker.
This first eclipse is a full moon lunar eclipse with the moon in Sagittarius (the sign of adventure, outer space, international issues and travel, legal matters, education, publishing and broadcasting) directly opposite (as usual) the sun, which is still in Gemini at a challenging angle to Mars, which means that now the moon is also at the same challenging angle on the other side of the sky. Austin also notes that we will get a sense of doubt or “a shadow,” a “stain on the optimism.” Kelly adds that the placement of the moon in this eclipse feeds the optimism and the desire to look forward, but it does not give us a solid base that we need for that. By the middle of the month, when Mercury goes retrograde, Chris says things get real again.
Pam Gregory notes that since the nodes of the moon are now in Sagittarius and Gemini, and they stay there for about 18 months, this eclipse “kicks off an event or experience with a theme that becomes predominant over the next 18 months.” In a personal chart, you will feel this energy in the areas of your chart where Sagittarius and Gemini fall—which house—along with which planets are in those houses, especially those close to the eclipse points. This particular full moon eclipse falls within one degree of what is called the Great Attractor, an immense galactic force in the cosmos that is a vortex of spinning magnetic gravitational energy—so strong that light bends around it. This is linked with precognition, and it is future-oriented, giving us the raw material with which to create a new world as Pluto in Capricorn deconstructs our traditional past.
Levine points out that since this eclipse full moon is at a difficult angle to Mars, it has the potential of having a nasty or violent energy attached to it. On the flip side, he adds, that it is part of a wake-up call we as a culture are going through, as Sagittarius is about philosophies, education, and foreign travel and cultures. “There is likely going to be some very heightened discussion connected to trade or some major trade announcements related to information going back and forth,” he tells us, as Gemini is about trade, the media, and communication of information.
At this point, Mars is moving closer to Neptune, the planet of fantasy, confusion, and lack of clarity. So, Levine says there will be a lot of words being thrown around, but it will be “hard to know who is on what side and where it is all going.”
Acyuta-bhava tells us that a lunar eclipse in Sagittarius talks about our larger belief structures related to spiritual, religious, ethical, moral themes, as well as education, learning and culture. Those paradigms, he says, are changing dramatically and this eclipse will bring something to fruition and lead in significant change, likely with drama, conflict and intensity with its connection to Mars. Mars is associated with martyrs, and Mars in a challenging angle to the full moon eclipse in Sagittarius can activate that martyr energy. Every time that planets throughout the next few months hit the eclipse point, that energy will be activated or turned back on. So, these shifts and effects are not limited to this day or even this month, as the eclipse energy remains for several months.
Pam Gregory advises us to focus on being an observer by taking in information and facts while staying neutral and calm. A lot will be disclosed that could drastically change belief systems. Big themes may come up related to freedom, truth, justice, and the law. Jupiter rules Sagittarius, and right now Jupiter is retrograde and close to Pluto, which means there could be a crisis in beliefs, and a need to reassess and revise our beliefs. So, try to avoid anger, step back and stay neutral.
Mercury is in Cancer forming an angle of opportunity with Uranus in Taurus, which Rick Levine explains gives us the ability to use our intellect. Since the sign of Cancer is ruled by the moon, it is an emotional sign that relates to our feelings. Mercury in Cancer is more feeling focused than logical. The Uranus connection can bring unexpected breakthroughs or understandings that helps us to move away from the extreme. “Lightning strikes to new ways of thinking,” Levine says. And while, at the same time, the sun and Mars are making two different challenging angles to Saturn in Aquarius, bringing an energy that is difficult to manage, the change in perspective that the Mercury/Uranus connection brings could help us keep an open mind.
The Water Trio discussed what Mercury in Cancer feels like, and they used key words such as “inner reflection,” “reassessment,” and “exploring emotions,” “making a connection between the head and the heart.” Alicia talked about a drive to protect and nurture and nourish, but with Mercury, to think through our emotions and bring logic to discussions about feelings.
Rick Levine notes that over these few days, Venus is at an unusual angle to Jupiter and Pluto in Capricorn. “Normally Venus is sweet and nice,” he says. “But Venus is ameliorating—if a nasty person comes into your life, and you are sweet to them, you only encourage them to be nastier.” So, this aspect between Venus and Jupiter/ Pluto, combined with the challenging angle between Venus and Mars, Levine sums up, “We will see tempers blowing up with what is coming.’
On the 11th, Mars and Neptune in Pisces begin to dance together, getting to the exact alignment by the 13th. The sun, on the 10th-11th is challenging Neptune and will quickly be at a difficult angle to Mars. Rick Levine calls this the combination of the “shape-shifter”—Neptune is imagination and Mars is the physical. Pam Gregory says that Mars represents the drive to go after goals you want to achieve and when it meets up with Neptune in Pisces, you can lose focus on your goals, because Neptune dissolves the energy Mars usually has.
Pam describes the sun’s challenging angle to Neptune as a time when there could be “deception, lies, and things that have deliberately not been made clear to you.” But with the sun in Gemini, there is the energy to gather information that could clash with belief systems. When Mars is conjunct Neptune at this point, Pam says it can relate to spiritual action, such as yoga, tai chi, and chi gong, or doing spiritual activities like helping people in some way or meditating.
Chris and his group discussed the Mars and Neptune alignment noting that with Neptune, “it is hard to pin down as a single specific thing.” Key words that Austin came up with to describe this combination of planetary energies were, “A man standing in the ocean fighting with the waves.” He explained, “We can say Mars is the fire of individual assertion, whereas Neptune is inherently massive in its scale…and very watery, so it tends to dissolve the individual concern into a vaster sea, which can disperse it to the point that it seems not to exist.” Any threats could be “the nature of a toxic cloud…enveloping in a way that it attacks,” Chris summarized. It will mean that truth, boundaries, and reality are just simply going to continue to be elusive, Levine says.
Rick Levine also looks at a connection between Venus and Chiron, which gives us a little reprieve. This aspect says we have an opportunity to create healing, if we do things in a way that is kind and pleasant.
Acyuta-bhava describes this connection as the “charitable we—I am not a ‘me’, I am a ‘we’. And I am fighting or acting on behalf of the larger collective.”
Levine talks about the moon moving into Aries on June 14th, meaning we gain some clarity, and the sun at a sharp angle to Uranus can bring a sudden breakthrough. The sun is moving in a way that hits the three big outer planets this week – Pluto (14th), Jupiter (16th) and Saturn (21st)—at uncomfortable angles. These aspects are important, he says, because they show the disconnect between information–what we know or think we know based on information that is coming out, coming from others or from deep undercurrents—a sense of optimism for how we can take that information to a higher level, and the reality we will eventually run into. Levine believes this will be a time when an “incredibly significant event” happens.
June 17, 18, 19
This week is when Mercury begins to slow down to a halt in the sky, in the sign of Cancer, and it will appear to move backwards in Cancer for three weeks. Mercury has been “in shadow,” slowing down, since June 1, and now is when it makes the change. This means that there is something that has to be revisited, Chris says, noting that everything taking place in the first week or two of June could potentially come back up and need to be revisited at a later date.
This is a time, says Acyuta-bhava, when we can get all sorts of messages coming up from the past, from family from ancestors, along with emotional issues related to the vulnerable space in our life around home, family and the past. It can relate to babies, children or family life, and indicate a time of reflection and revision of our emotional responses to things. It can bring on an amplified sense of nostalgia, wanting to go “home” even though you are home. It is really wanting to go back to a time when you felt comforted and secure in a safe place. With Venus retrograde in Gemini, which is Mercury’s sign, it can bring up relationships, romance and what you find attractive.
Rick Levine points out that this Mercury retrograde could mean sluggish communication or things not being said. We might want to talk in a way we would when we feel safe and secure (at “home”) but though we believe we can figure things out and make plans, we cannot. He says, “Right now you cannot tell if the tide is coming in or going out.
As Mercury begins to move backward in the sky, Austin says it is confused, but not difficult. However, at the end of June and the beginning of July, when Mercury is still heading backward in Cancer, Mars will move into the sign of Aries, which brings in a harsh energy that can bring out the nasty side of communication in a big way.
NEW MOON SOLAR ECLIPSE
This new moon solar eclipse (sun and moon together in the same sign at the same degree) is going to be intense for many technical reasons. It is going into the sign of Cancer, and is on the 0˚ point, and when the sun goes into Cancer, it is the summer solstice. Not only that, the North Node of the moon—one of two destiny points that tell us the location of eclipses—is one degree away. That strengthens this powerful new moon as it escorts us into a new phase and relates to the lunar eclipse in early January that signaled an end to a major phase and a shift in the energy that will end for good the themes from the time before January. Set your intentions, it is taking us on a long ride to a new world.
Chris brings up an interesting point, that the first eclipse of the year in Capricorn in early January occurred 2 days before the major rare meeting of Saturn and Pluto, also in Capricorn—the aspect that set the theme for 2020. Combined with the eclipse, it set off the beginning of the end of a major phase.
Chris and his group discussed the fact that the Saturn/Pluto conjunction was on the same day as the announcement published in the NY Times “Mysterious flu-like illness reported by China.” The eclipses on June 21 and July 5 will bring a culmination, a return to, or a bookend to some of those themes.
While some at the time of that Times article criticized astrologers in the popular media for not seeing the pandemic coming, Chris and the group discussed the ways that would come out in a reading. Not all astrologers look closely at pandemics in astrological history. The astrologer Andre Barbeau, however, who specifically analyzed long-term planetary cycles, wrote an article in 2011 in which he described pandemics of the past century – 1918,1954, 1968, and 1982 (HIV AIDS), and he warned that we might well be in serious danger of a new pandemic at the 2020 through 2021 mark in this century’s planetary cycles. Barbeau passed away in October, 2019, and did not see that his prediction actually came true.
Kelly explained that while most astrologers did not specifically say “a pandemic Is coming,” “We just spoke to the symbolism and when you do that, you read the lay of the land. You may not know the specific manifestation of the symbolism, but you capture the core of the experience of that timeframe, and that is meaningful for people.”
Rick Levine narrows down his analysis into the statement that “There is no solution that is quick and easy to what is going on now. Whatever the solution is will create more problems. These are complex times.” But he brings up a silver lining in the clouds, in that Mars is at a positive angle of opportunity to Jupiter –a benefic planet (one of the good guys in a big way). “When Jupiter is energized by Mars,” he explains, “our optimism and hope can be off the chart. It is good news and can seem to good to be true.” And while things we are working on can be moving upward and outward, we will feel an exuberance, as if we can do anything. Unfortunately, it will not last.
Based on the degrees where the planets and important points fall in this eclipse, Acyuta-bhava calls this solar eclipse the “planting of a new seed.” It introduces new themes, and brings us to a time of initiation related to the more vulnerable sphere of life—home, family, private life, your body, and your inner emotional state of being. It is emotionally dynamice, he says, brining into play beliefs, commitments, philosophies, spirituality, and intellectual perspectives. The fact that this is a new moon solar eclipse at the very end of the sign of Cancer, makes the introduction of new things coming in much more intense.
With the June solar eclipse happening on the day of the summer solstice, Austin notes that there was also a solar eclipse on Christmas Day 2019, a few days after the winter solstice (which some called “the antichrist” configuration. (We also have the major aspect of Jupiter and Saturn meeting in Aquarius on the 2020 winter solstice date, December 21). The solstices and equinoxes strengthen the eclipse energy and add to the duration of their effects. Eclipse energies generally last at least 6 months and solstice energy until the next season begins. Austin muses about whether or not it could be an omen, but it is, at least, a connection to important changes a comin’.
On the 22nd, Neptune will begin its retrograde period, moving backwards by degrees in Pisces and will continue in that direction until November. Two days later, on the 24th, Venus puts on the breaks and starts to move forward in Gemini. Mars is on the precipice of making its biggest commitment of the year—at the last degrees of Pisces ready for its move on the 27th into Aries, its home sign where it is strongest, aand where it will stay for six months,making it a major theme of the year.
Mars enters Aries on the 27th, setting into motion a whole new energetic cycle, Levine says. This is a very strong Mars, Acyuta-bhava adds, saying that it will create a very volatile second half of the year that will bring divisiveness, power struggles, spiritual breakthoughs that can be emotional but with Mars-like characteristics. The retrograde that keeps it in Aries doesn’t start until late in the summer, and that can be a time of people acting impulsively or reactively to something, but it will also bring consequences for irrational, impulsive and domineering behavior. “In Mars retrograde,” he says, “it is as though we are getting a crash course in how to be in better alignment with mars energy—the will, anger, frustration, aggression, courage and action. The up-side to this is that it brings us to the point where, if we just surrender, we can learn to become peaceful spiritual warriors.
Austin describes the process as figuring out how to work with, adapt to, and protect yourself from a situation that feels like it is raining gasoline and we have an overabundance of fuel (highly volatile energy). This can relate to people’s moods and dispositions. The challenge when it is in Aries for so long is to figure out how to manage this highly combustible overflow, that is not something to be terrified of, rather it is something to be planned out—how to store the fuel, carefully; how to put it to use and in what places, how to be careful—not because it is evil, Austin says, but because it is potentially explosive when not handled properly. “So don’t curse the gas,” he tells us. “Just think about: what am I going to d o with this, how do I contain it, and how do I use it.”
On the 28th, Mars will be at an angle of opportunity to Saturn in early Aquarius, which is when Mars gets schooled by Saturn, the taskmaster, who puts Mars on a leash and trains him to build momentum instead of burning himself out, Levine tells us.
As we have seen all year, just when you think you’ve faced the most challenging situation, a new twist is thrown in for good measure. By the time of the next eclipse on July 5th, Mars will be challenged again with a harsh angle to Mercury retrograde which also affects Venus in Gemini—Mercury’s home. More nastiness comes to the surface, and this will last most of July, in a very strong, very harsh way.
On the 29th, we have the sun meeting up with Mercury retrograde in Cancer. This is when there seems to be some clarity around a problem that appeared about ten days earlier and it starts to move to some conclusion. While these two planets are conjunct, they are both at an angle of opportunity to Uranus, the planet that brings shake-ups, surprises, and shifts in the landscape. This will likely bring in new thoughts, ideas, possibilities and innovations, he tells us, and it will come in from left field when we least expect it. This configuration can potentially move us farther faster.
The sun and mercury are also in a difficult angle to Chiron (the wounded healer), so we need to be careful about labeling sickness—not just related to COVID-19, but also in causing pain, injury and hurt to others, and, instead, saying things consciously with words meant to heal.
Jupiter and Pluto have been moving backwards in Capricorn and, since they move at different speeds, Jupiter will connect with Pluto for a second time this year on the 30th before passing it by. These two planets together bring up a deep desire to get to the truth, to dig deep, to uncover it and get justice for past instances of wrongdoing.
Austin tells us, “Jupiter is the big picture—what is really going on.” Chris adds, “There is the desire to use critical thinking to try to discover the truth about something or having the feeling of discovering a hidden truth, which can be very empowering.” In part it is connected to the proliferation of conspiracy videos, because it makes us want to question truths and not take things for granted. But, Chris warns, we should be careful not to be “distracted by elaborate conspiracy ideas from the shady stuff that is evident, is in front of us and is being documented.” Austin adds, “We can be critical of the official story or the particular handling of an incident without necessarily believing that it was a reptilian plot.”
Another side of the Jupiter/Pluto alignment, as we talked about in April, is that it relates to big money. Add to that the desire to get to the bottom of the story and express concerns about what we were told versus what the truth is, means we can look at how the first bailout was distributed – how much to giant corporations as opposed to the amount that went to individuals or small businesses—and we can challenge that shady stuff.
Levine notes that while Jupiter brings hope and optimism to the dance, Pluto is the underworld, and can add a wave of uncertainty and possibly the contagion (Pluto can relate to viruses), which Jupiter may likely expand. “Not necessarily just the virus,” he says, “but misinformation and fear, for example, and the suppression of information that does not agree with the party line coming up with more intensity.”
Acyuta-bhava adds that while this alignment between Jupiter and Pluto can be about excavation, even of deep riches and empowerment, it also brings with it the need to explore deep moral lessons, spiritual lessons or ethical concerns. Jupiter and Pluto can also represent the corruption of Jupiterian institutions—the law, justice, wealth, privilege, power and greed. Pluto deconstructs ideologies that act simply as a façade, such as people saying they believe one thing and behave in a completely different way. This, he says, is one of the big transits of the year, but we still have a few more heading our way.
I’d like to end this with a summary from Rick Levine’s video for June 2020 (he will post another one mid-month on YouTube). He stated:
We may not know where the energies are going now; we may not know how we will get out of the situation we are currently in; and, we may not know our future, but we know this retrograde period is giving us an opportunity to reconsider what was simply a blind motion forward based on continuing something from the past…. (T)he fact is if we learn our lessons and we do the work we can do now, then we will come out of this wiser than when we went into it, and we can alter the direction of the ship of state, the direction of humanity, by creating the necessary drags and currents that pull the ship around one way or another to get it off of its previously obvious collision course.
In the United States, we are closing in on the point at which Pluto returns to where it was when our country was formed. With Pluto there is a death and a rebirth, a time of transformation. That is what happened for us almost 250 years ago. Many other planets in the origin chart of the United States are being activated now, as well. And, now, as then, “these are the times that try men’s souls.” We need to face and deal with the crises and determine where we want to go from here. This is the journey we are on in 2020, and it is not an easy one.
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