August is a very busy month with some intense astrological activity, indicating major shifts, changes, and transformational events can be possible. This month presents a great opportunity to move through life’s stresses with strength and an enlightened perspective.
First, Jupiter, the great benefic planet of spirituality, wisdom, and finance, moves from the fire sign of Leo, to the earth sign of Virgo on August 11, 2016. Jupiter will remain in Virgo until September 11, 2017. Jupiter stays in a sign a little over a year, so when Jupiter shifts signs it is quite significant. With Jupiter now in the practical earth sign of Virgo, we are not big risk-takers with our finances, but instead find value in organizing and developing realistic and efficient business plans. And as Virgo is a sign of seva or service, Jupiter here may motivate us to do charitable work, helping those in need which uplifts and inspires us. Environmental causes, alternative energy sources, sustainability, and growing organic food are areas of life that are favored as Jupiter travels through health-conscious Virgo. Our focus moves to educational goals, attaining knowledge, and connecting to our true vocation. We do need to watch out for occasional self-criticalness as well as a dose of perfectionism that can block our progress, as we want things pure.
Saturn, planet of discipline, focus and truth, goes direct on August 13, 2016, having been retrograde since March 25, 2016. While Saturn was retrograde in Scorpio, we were forced to honestly face our shadow-self and projections onto others, or we suffered. Now as Saturn moves direct, and hopefully with lessons learned concerning self-responsibility, we move through life with greater maturity, stability, and reliability. Showing respect to all and being dedicated and authentic in our work are positive qualities connected to Saturn.
On August 19, 2016 Mercury (planet of the intellect) transits Virgo, its sign of exaltation until September 9. During this time Mercury will be with Jupiter which will amplify interest in educational or mental pursuits. Taking writing courses, journalism, or getting published may be an interest. Mercury in Virgo can give us deeper insight into life, and the ability to be more discerning in our choices. Our speech and writings become very inspiring and influential.
A major planetary event occurs when Mars and Saturn in Scorpio conjunct (meet) exactly at 15 degrees on August 22, 23, and 24, 2016. These two planets are “enemies” to each other, so watch for increased volatility, and frustrations rising around this time. Mars in its own sign of Scorpio is quite strong and intense. Mars wants immediate action and self-expression, but Saturn can restrict or delay the assertive energies of Mars, a planet that does not like being held back. Watch for an amplification of anger and making impulsive decisions that you later regret. Refusing to change or shift one’s views out of fear or anxiety is possible. But if motivated by pure intention and strong will, we can rise above these barriers with greater understanding and vision. Positive ways to work with the Saturn/Mars energy are to find healthy outlets for this excessive build-up of energy, such as through physical activity like yoga or tai chi, or even through the creative arts. Allow grace, clarity, and more light to enter your life. Raise your vibration through meditation or mindfulness practices. Know that your actions do matter and have great impact. Be with uplifting people or read inspirational literature. See your purpose as creating peace and kindness in the world. Forgiveness is one of the best things we can do during this time, as when we truly forgive – we release ourselves of burdens of pain and fear, and then we realize we cannot attack or harm another being.
Venus goes into Virgo, its sign of debility, the very next day after the Saturn/Mars conjunction, on August 25 until September 18, 2016. Venus will then join exalted Mercury and Jupiter already there. Venus in Virgo is learning to be less mental in its approach to love and relationship. This is a time to keep our hearts open, or we can become too critical and analytical. During the time Mercury is with Venus in Virgo (from August 25 to September 9), the debility of Venus is lessened, which helps us to be more loving and supportive of others. In addition, from August 25 until September 18, 2016, the meeting of the two teacher planets, Jupiter and Venus occurs in Virgo. Jupiter is the teacher of the gods, and Venus is the teacher of the demons in Vedic mythology. This combination presents us with an opportunity to learn and gain understandings (hopefully peacefully) from two different perspectives or levels of awareness. Let the higher energies of this connection help us work together intelligently in this era of increased and extreme polarity that we all feel in the world today.
Toward the end of August, Mars (planet of assertiveness, action, courage) in Scorpio will aspect Ketu (south node of the Moon) in Aquarius, exactly at 18 degrees on August 28 and 29, 2016. This is a time to be extra careful, as it can create overly excitable emotions and thoughts. This is a time to cool down, be patient and non-reactive. Do peaceful activities and be in positive, uplifting environments are remedial measures.
Mercury begins its retrograde phase in Virgo on August 30, 2016 until September 21, 2016. During the retrograde phase it’s a good time to review plans, research new ideas, and double-check all communications and travel plans. Choose your words carefully and communicate intelligently. Clean out closets and re-organize your home.
And finally, the fall eclipse season begins in the early morning hours of September 1, 2016 at 2:03 AM (PDT), with a solar eclipse at 15 degrees in the fiery sign of Leo in the fierce nakshatra of Purva Phalguni. This is the first of the two eclipses occurring in September (the other one is on September 16). Eclipses are catalysts, and can bring increased awareness and insight. Things may be revealed now that we had ignored or hidden, in order to heal and transform. Do not to fear eclipses, but know they can bring significant changes into one’s life. With this eclipse in Purva Phalguni nakshatra (whose deity is Bhaga, the god of fortune) we become more aware that to really appreciate life, we must share with those we love, and be generous to those in need. The shadow of this nakshatra is over-indulgence, narcissism, and pride. Maybe this is an opening to re-define our values and sensibilities. During an eclipse it is best to be in a peaceful, healing environment as we can feel heightened sensitivity. Ultimately, eclipses are for focusing on our spiritual self, and embracing the light within.
Debra Infante is a practicing Vedic astrologer and teacher. She began her studies of Vedic astrology in 1995, and was certified by The American College of Vedic Astrology as an approved teacher (Level I) in September 1999. She has been teaching Vedic astrology to the students in the yoga teacher trainings at 7 Centers Yoga in Sedona, AZ since 2002. Debra, can be reached at (928) 639-0623 for astrological consultations, by phone or in person. You can also find her at https://ayurveda-sedona.com/yoga-and-vedic-astrology/about-vedic-astrology/