May 26, 2021 // 5 Sagittarius
On Wednesday, the Gemini Sun, now within reach of the north node, continues its ascent toward the midsummer meridian and toward its destiny, while across the sky, the Moon in Sagittarius nears the south node and takes the shadowy veil. It’s the stuff eclipses are made of, and this time, it’s the Moon’s turn to journey into the belly of the beast. Thus, the Flower Moon of May becomes a Blood Moon to boot. Its rouged and reddened face recalls the anemone that grew from Aphrodite’s tears and Adonis’s blood. Or the poppy, symbol of Persephone’s deflowering, her narcotic of awakening. This lunar eclipse brings both blossoming and shedding, pruning and release.
Jupiter is in the noteworthy position of both ruling and squaring this lunation from Pisces. In my mind I see him in the robes of the High Priest, or the flamen dialis, as he administers the sacred drink. After the initial purging, we are left pondering deep Sagittarian questions and confronting that slippery concept of Belief. Where do our beliefs come from, the past or the present? From others or from the Self? How do we know right from wrong, and is it possible that such a dichotomy doesn’t exist? Is morality a mandate from on high or a human construct? Is it universal and constant or fluid and subjective? Where is the line between spirituality and religion; between religion and dogma; between dogma and ideology? Why believe in anything at all? What does it mean to believe? As the entheogen starts to work on us, what we thought was written in stone may start to morph, even to dissolve, before our very eyes. Meanwhile, Sagittarius shows us one set of doors, and Gemini shows us another. The first is a choice between wisdom and cynicism; the second is a choice between innocence and naiveté. Which will you pick?
At the same time, Mercury and Venus, also in Gemini, find themselves in a dance with Neptune, also in Pisces. Our relationships and values are cast in a hazy light; our heart songs become plaintive melodies, nostalgic tunes, or hypnotic hymns. We may feel loss, or confusion, or deep compassion, or divine inspiration. And with three mutable signs in play, our feelings and perceptions are changing—some with the winds, and some with the tides. We are in the eclipse portal now, so though we can look forward to new stories emerging, for the time being, be careful of chasing dragons. Watch out for the rip currents and whirlpools. Make sure that the preacher, or the guru, isn’t a wolf in shepherd’s clothing. And remember that an open mind is healthy, but also vulnerable. Look to retrograde Saturn for help with boundaries and your relationship to time.
On the other hand, such strong Piscean influence can give this lunation redemptive, healing potential. Avail yourself of its waters to cleanse, play or float freely. See your own beauty reflected in your lover’s ocean eyes. Draw music and hear color in a synesthetic symphony. Read the runes with rose-colored glasses. The nectar you find may have you feeling alive in new and different ways (as that ancient word translated means “overcoming death”). And, on your journey into the unconscious, or into the otherworldly, you will likely encounter the strange, the cryptic, the ineffable. Whatever comes through, try to resist the urge to find answers right away, or to “know” what it all “means,” and trust that it makes sense in the cosmic timeline. This eclipse, though it may bring up big questions, asks little of us, only listen and dream, dream and listen, and leave the rest to the gods.
May 20 - June 20, 2021
We are entering the season of the storyteller, as the Sun brings us into the celestial library, shining its light over a part of the sky that contains much myth and star lore, and into the sign that itself contains multitudes. Let’s skim the shelves and see what piques our interest. There are stories of woe, such as that of the Seven Sisters, one of whom went missing ages ago; or the Hyades, who weep for their slain brother. There are stories of power and might, featuring Orion, hero and hunter—and ravager—sent to his death by the scorpion; or Michael, archangel and avenger, whose heavenly seat is the royal star in the bull’s eye. We find adventure when we get to Polaris, the North Star, watcher and guide to untold numbers of sailors and travelers; and to the Gemini twins themselves, Castor and Pollux, one mortal and one divine, humanity’s ancient symbol of connection and separation. Even the Sun itself, when in Gemini, may recall the shade of some long lost companion star, a forgotten red dwarf, or what astronomers poetically call a “Nemesis”, whose original sacrifice imbued our sovereign with its absolute power. This year, eclipse season adds strange portals and hungry dragons to the repertory. Retrograde Mercury will bring the comedy of errors, plot twists, missed cues and last minute epiphanies. And aspects to Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune give our players guts, gusto, gravitas, romance and redemption.
Where Gemini sees stories above it also constellates them down below, in characters like Superman and Clark Kent, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, Romeo and Juliet, Anna and Elsa, Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde. Its signature is found in Tales of Two Cities or of Twin Towers. It looks like Scheherazade spinning tales into 1,001 nights to stay her own execution; or the Brontë sisters and their forgotten brother, poor Branwell; it is Anne Frank narrating the fear and optimism, depth and triviality of her teenage mind while the Nazis closed in; or Frederick Douglass teaching himself to read and then learning the word “abolition.”
The archetype of Gemini is alive anywhere you find duality, doppelgängers, or the myriad uses of language: to persuade, to teach, to disarm, to deceive, to engage, to empower, to entertain or to bear witness. It gives birth to Mercurial souls and silver tongues. Beware the shadow—that is, the shadiness: such dexterity can lend itself to mischief, or even malice. Trickster energy is highest with this sign, so let us lean toward the better angels of our nature rather than the devil on our shoulder. There’s a lot to love about this divine child, this blithe spirit and merry pollinator: Gemini is the embodiment of high spring, refreshing us with its playfulness and exuberance, and reminding us that levity is ok, and change can be a welcome thing.
May 13 - July 28, 2021
Astrologically, it’s the headliner event of the summer: Jupiter moving into Pisces and kicking off the Great Gatsby-esque all-night pool party, replete with nymphs, crooners, drifters, the beautiful and the damned—real Deco decadence. In truth, this is just the preview, as the Lord of Louche is only dipping his toe into the first 2 degrees of the sign before going retrograde, but it is still a much-needed getaway to the place he shares with his brother, Neptune, and for us, a welcome change from all the hard edges and limitations of the past year and a half. Enough to tide us over until next year, anyway, when the Big Guy will really be able to settle in for an extended stay.
Jupiter in Pisces cuts a glamorous figure. He is a magnetic combination of power and pathos; a libertine with a faraway look in his eye, a bad boy with melancholy and mystique. He has the debauchée appetites one would expect of the king of the gods, but with depth, feeling and compassion to match. Not as detached and secular as he was in Aquarius, here he consorts with all walks of humanity, wading into the mosh pit, holding down the dance floor, all to stop the world and melt with you. Jupiter thrives in the limitlessness of Pisces, loves the thrill of escaping his boundaries, the freedom of dissolving into the psychedelic abyss. With license to ill, and nowhere else to be, he’ll gladly follow the White Rabbit or the Playboy Bunny, if they seem like they might lead him to nirvana.
It feels like a wild time, no? Or perhaps like a dream… As is always the caution with any Piscean story, beware of illusion and loss of time, the temporary high and the false prophet. And with Jupiter transits, it is excess. The pull to indulge will likely be matched by the need to withdraw, so allow yourself space for introversion, meditation, or sleep. Caveats aside, wherever the cusp of Pisces falls in your chart is the area of life where you can be on the lookout for the good fortune that our Greater Benefic will bestow upon you. It’s a sea change and a balm, in a year that is hard at work on the collective, so allow yourself to enjoy it—go ahead and kick off your shoes and jump in.