June begins with a series of broadly fortunate changes. Venus and Mercury both return home to signs they rule, and the greater benefic, Jupiter, stations direct. The winds here are strong, but favorable. The middle of the month is a bit more challenging, as its dynamics pivot around the Sun and Mercury’s opposition with Saturn. The last third of June, which begins with the solstice, sees the elemental balance shift quickly toward water. Healing springs and overflowing septic systems alike dot the last portion of the month.
There is not necessarily one configuration or theme which dominates June. With Mercury and the Sun in Gemini for half of the month, it may in fact be a month of multiplicities rather than unities. Still, there is a thread which connects the various planets’ movements. Both Mercury and Venus, after complicated retrograde cycles, return home to their own signs. Venus’s ingress into Taurus is particularly significant, as the planet has not been in a happy, strong position since January. The Sun’s mid-June opposition with Saturn also points back to the beginning of the year, or rather just prior to that, when the two conjoined in December. Add to that the fact that June’s end will bring us to the middle of the calendar year, and it seems as though a half-time discussion of some sort might be in order.
Much has happened, both above and below, since 2017 began. Yet instead of listing events, it might be better to ask a short series of questions.
What did you want 2017 to be? What were your plans for it?
Who did you want to be, what did you want to do?
The year’s dramatic first half swept a number of good intentions and solid plans to the wayside. Shit-storms happen. No one can blame you for just holding on tight and riding them out. But every storm clears, or at least lulls, and it is at those points that it’s important to remember that there was more to your plan than mere survival. Take out your telescope and look all the way back to January 1st, and try to see what you saw then — a protoplasmic year, as yet unformed, waiting to be moulded by both History and your very own will.
Even if some of your plans may got stretched out of shape, or even ripped to tatters, the will and desire which birthed them remains. Remember those.
Once you can recall the way you began, take an honest look at where you are now, relatively to where you’d planned to be. You may not have gotten blown as far off course as you thought. Or maybe you did. Regardless, in order to get back on track, you’ll need to deal with your disappointment. Disappointment is born out of the gap between expectations and the what actually happens. Even a little divergence between the two can put a wall of shame and irritation between you and your goals. You’ll need to wipe that away, and there’s no rag that can clean it up other than forgiveness. You’ll need to forgive yourself for you failures, imperfections, and all-too-human reactions. You may need to forgive the world, too. You need to forgive, not to fulfill some vague moral mandate or please an obnoxiously compassionate divinity, but in order to be able to look forward and see tomorrow’s possibilities rather than yesterday’s miseries. After you’ve dissolved your disappointments, take the time to count up the things you learned and achieved this year that weren’t part of the plan. They matter too, even if they weren’t planned.
And also remember that 2017 isn’t even remotely over. More than half of the year remains unshaped, sculptor’s clay not yet fired by Time. Look at all that’s left on your calendar, and consider making not-so-new year’s resolutions.
Flower Petals and Ash
June’s first significant alignment is Venus’ conjunction with Uranus in Aries (6/3 12:31 AM PST). Here, heart-centered Venus is struck by a bolt of divine fire, inflaming the passions. This configuration delivers searing insight into relationships and an inability to tolerate emotional bondage of any sort.
Just before conjoining Uranus, Venus nearly trines Saturn (6/1 8:22 AM PST) and reactivates the trine between the two, which colored much of May’s astrology. The root-story of this configuration is the reconciliation between the divine fire which Uranus keeps and the stoney necessities which Saturn advocates for. Venus’ conjunction with Uranus and trine with Saturn thus participates in the alchemy of radical personal sovereignty and responsibility as it pertains to relationships. Agreements between people may need to be re-written in order to accommodate new insights and energy. The outcomes of the Venus retrograde cycle, which began in March, will likely be evident here.
Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad
After whatever insights or insanity the Venus-Uranus conjunction brings, a number of (mostly) happy changes follow. Mars, Mercury and Venus all switch signs during the first week of June.
Mars is first, leaving Gemini for Cancer (6/4 9:15 AM PST). Mars is thought to have trouble expressing himself in Cancer, as the nurturing intimacy of the Crab’s sign is inimical to the brash power of the red planet. Mars’ time in Cancer is thus not a good time for works of martial potency, as determination and vigor may be trickier to summon. This difficulty of expression does, however, sometimes have the benefit of temporarily suppressing ongoing conflicts. Yet what is hidden does not simply cease to exist, and so passive-aggressive patterns may develop or intensify. For a more intimate portrait of Mars in Cancer, refer to Mars in Cancer: The Heart of the Werewolf. Mars will be in Crab’s sign for the rest of June and most of July, as the red planet will not enter the next sign, Leo, until July 20th.
Finally, it is worth noting that Mars’ visible light will grow increasing dim throughout June, and then disappear for July and much of August.
The Empress and Her Couch
Venus changes signs next, entering Taurus early morning on the 6th (6/6 12:26 AM PST). Venus’ entrance into the bovine sign sees her move from a portion of the zodiac in which she is considered to have a very hard time, Aries, to one where she is considered powerful and at ease, Taurus. The shift is doubly sweet this year because of the bright planet’s extended retrograde stay in Aries.
Venus is the ruler, or “owner”, of Taurus. The Bull’s sign, with its focus on accumulation, steadiness, luxury and value, has long been conceived of as Venus’ lavish retreat, to which she returns annually to renew herself.
When Venus is ensconced on her comfortable, bull-carved throne, she is more generous with her significations, doling out sweets in greater portions than usual. Furthermore, Venus happily greases the wheels of social dynamics. Though she may seem lazy on her couch, she is bright and wise in dispensing judgments regarding the value of things and the equity of relationships. For the time that Venus is in Taurus, do not be afraid to wish upon Aphrodite’s bright star for a portion of the grace and goodness which are hers to give. Venus will be in Taurus until July 4th.
Mr. Wednesday’s Wild Ride
Mercury is the last of the three planets to change signs in early June. The swift planet enters Gemini on the 6th (6/6 3:13 PM PST). Like Venus’ entry into Taurus, Mercury’s ingress into Gemini is cause for celebration, as Gemini is one of the two signs which Mercury calls home.
The messenger is empowered in the dual-bodied sign, and strengthens cognition and communication while within it. Works of transportation, speed and mental dexterity are all favored. Unfortunately, the clever planet will only be in Gemini until June 21st, meaning that the window to take advantage is relatively short. Furthermore, though visible for the first portion of the month, Mercury will spend the rest of June hiding behind the Sun, invisible to the naked eye.
June’s first lunation, the Full Moon in Sagittarius, arrives early the morning of the 9th (6/9 6:08 AM PST), though for those living in North America, it is the night of the 8th which will show the Moon at its fullest. There is much to like about this jolly, Jupiter-ruled lunation, though some shadows surround it.
One of the unequivocally good things is that this Full Moon coincides closely with Jupiter’s direct station (6/9 7:03 AM PST). Retrograde since February, the big planet puts it back into drive just as the Moon reaches maximum fullness. Jupiter is considerably more benefic when direct than retrograde. This is important because this Full Moon takes place in Sagittarius — a sign ruled by Jupiter, and thus takes its cues from the planet. It signals forward movement in efforts to re-establish coherence and promote meaningful growth.
Yet expansion has a limit, and in the planetary world, limits are represented proudly by Saturn, which will appear in the sky not-so-far away from the Full Moon. Thus while Jupiter emphasizes positive potentials, Saturn warns us to be careful, and observe the limits to growth upon which both common sense and deep wisdom agree.
Data and Dreams
Mercury makes an odd pair of aspects on the 13th. The first of these is a very pleasant trine with newly-direct Jupiter in Libra (6/13 8:44 AM PST), which by itself would augur happy thoughts, glad tidings and lofty perspectives. Yet nearly simultaneously, the messenger makes a square to Neptune in Pisces (6/13 8:28 PM), confusing facts and fictions, data and dreams. This blend of the optimistic and the imaginative which Jupiter and Neptune offer are activated not only by Mercury on the 13th, but also by the Moon at several other points during the month.
The middle of June is colored strongly by the opposition of the Sun, and then Mercury, to Saturn. The Sun’s opposition with Saturn (6/15 3:17 AM PST) can be likened to Saturn’s “Full Moon” phase, as it is the period during which the distant planet’s light is brightest. For the week surrounding the opposition, Saturn will rise as the sun sets, shedding its brightest rays throughout the night.
This opposition is the dead center of Saturn’s retrograde cycle, and thus highlights the work of restructuring. It shines down on half-complete remodels and unfinished demo jobs, spotlighting what remains to be done. Delays and difficulties are clear in this light, and enthusiasm can be hard to muster in the face of such obstacles.
Lagging behind the Sun, Mercury opposes Saturn a few days later (6/18 12:06 PM PST). As the clever messenger arrives, the difficulties revealed by the Sun-Saturn opposition are re-emphasized, but with greater clarity and resolution. Though this may make for an unhappy moment or two, Mercury’s inspection of the work-site will bring with it accurate assessments and smart fixes.
Shortly after the Sun and Mercury’s respective oppositions with Saturn, the pair both go on to sextile lively Uranus, offering a modicum of energy and insight. The Sun is first, lacing a bit of Uranian lightning into the Solar fire on the 18th (6/18 11:46 AM), with Mercury sextiling Uranus shortly thereafter (6/20 2:30 AM).
What The Waves Leave Behind
While Mercury and the Sun oppose Saturn, Neptune drifts into reverse (6/16 4:10 AM). The distant blue planet’s annual retrograde phase begins at 14’ Pisces, and asks us to become more critical of the stories we’ve been telling each other and ourselves. Coupled with the strong Saturnian configurations mid-month, Neptune’s retrograde station will likely preside over a few fond wishes extinguished and as well as the sound of bubbles beginning to pop. The planet’s backward-walking phase will last for approximately 5 months, with the direct station waiting for us in November.
The Way of Return
The solstice, the point of maximum inequality between day and night, arrives on June 20th. It marks the longest days of the northern hemisphere’s year and the longest nights of the south. The solstice (6/20 9:23 PM PST) sees the Sun cross from tropical Gemini into Cancer. While Gemini volatizes and divides, Cancer condenses and unifies. Things slow, and attention drops from heads into hearts. Words fall away to reveal the emotions propelling them. Take the crab’s outstretched claw and walk the spiral path back to the origin of things. The Sun will be Cancer until July 22nd, when it enters Leo.
Mercury enters Cancer only hours after the Sun (6/21 2:57 AM PST.) In the Crab’s sign, Mercury moves the conversation toward matters of home, family, and foundations. It is a phase of intimate conversations and considerations, and aids people in articulating their needs. As Mercury is currently moving at top speed, it will be in Cancer for only 15 days, with plans to exit on July 5th.
Shortly after the ingress of both the Sun and Mercury into Cancer, the two planets conjoin. This moment, the superior conjunction, sees Mercury in line with the Earth, but on the far side of the Sun. Here the swift planet acts like a telescope, extending the mind’s reach outward, to the edges of space. The visions which populate this concern motherhood, intimacy and fecundity. Indeed space itself was, to the ancient Egyptians, a great mother’s body — the goddess Nut— lavishly bejeweled with stars. Yet this vision is not confined to the Nile delta, and for other peoples she has worn other names. Regardless her title, do not miss the chance to look outward, and see the fabric of reality as so many before have — as the living tissue of an immense womb within which all of creation dwells.
Grab A Bucket
A few days later, on June 23rd (6/23 7:30 PM PST), the Sun and the Moon conjoin in Cancer, their syzygy making yet another lunar month anew. This New Moon condenses visions and personal concerns into a seed for the ensuing weeks, and like all seeds, it must be nurtured. To do so properly will require the Water of Life. The Water of Life is whatever feeds your soul. It is the mother’s milk that enticed you from the womb. For some this spring bubbles out from their family, while for others it is found in a professional setting. It might flow from a calling, or a partnership. Regardless, while the Moon is dark, you would be wise to grab a bucket, and make a short pilgrimage back to that secret fountain.
Soul Filtration System
The last week of the June holds a potentially difficult set of configurations. Mercury and Mars conjoin in Cancer, opposite Pluto in Capricorn. This combination, whose effect stretches from the last week of June well into the first week of July, highlights the corruptions which have snuck into the sacred well. The dead rat of an old relationship, the fecal matter of familial patterns, and other pathogenic admixtures all can, and do, poison the water of life.
Use the end of June to locate and dispose of the waste-matter floating within. Yet the soul is a dark place, and so sightless, you’ll need to go on feel. These toxins will be revealed by the emotions they infect the waters with, corrosive sentiments such as powerlessness, hurt and rage. If you can locate and extract the source of these feelings, then a great victory will be yours. Even a little work filtering out the pathogens accumulated thus far this year will significantly improve the water quality. The soul is the womb in which your life grows, and the health of the divine child — none other than yourself— depends greatly upon its clarity.