July is an eventful month for the moons. The word “month” is etymologically derived from the word “moon.” Before we had our modern calendar, the ancients tracked time by the moon (moonths), and planned their farming accordingly. Life depended upon tracking the moons, to nourish the family with food. In July, the sign of Cancer is majorly prominent. Cancer is ruled by the Moon, who rules emotional needs, reactions, and instincts. In a natal chart, the Moon’s placement describes how one nurtures the self and others. The crab carries his home on his back with everything he needs in tow, lending to why Cancer rules the home, mother, family, heritage, the stomach and breasts. The Moon represents yin energy. This isn’t to say that it’s purely matriarchal, because everyone has a moon! That said, the Moon majorly influences women’s moonthly cycle.
There are thirteen lunar cycles in a solar year. Accordingly, women cycle through their menstrual thirteen times each year. This is how the number “13” gained the reputation to be “unlucky.” However, “13” is a very powerful number. During a woman’s moon time, it is said that a woman is most sensitive and intuitive. How interesting that Cancer rules instincts. Cancer, as well as the Moon, asks you to listen to your body. Be in tune with your needs, as well as what you don’t need.
When two Full Moons occur in a single month, the second moon is called a “Blue Moon.” This is of course where the saying “Once in a blue,” comes from. Blue Moons occur about every 400 days. It just so happens that this month, we are blessed with two Full Moons!
Venus finally meets up with Jupiter early in the morning of July 1st. Have you noticed the two bright orbs in the sky just after sunset? Meet Venus and Jupiter! And take it all in because soon, we won’t be able to see either of them at night anymore (well at least not for a while). On June 3oth and July 1st, they will appear together in luminous conjunction in the western sky. Venus and Jupiter are known as “benefics”, meaning that their gifts are generally positive; especially in Leo, the ruler of the heart! Although, it’s wise to keep in mind that too much of a good thing can sometimes have a negative effect. Expand through spending time with loved ones, going out to your favorite restaurants and treating your divine self to the joyous experiences you deserve! “The more the merrier!” Jupiter and Venus conjoined remind us to have fun, eat, drink and be merry. Spend more time doing what you love. It reminds us that we don’t just grow through hard work- sometimes you have to let go, indulge in the senses, and say YES to life. No man is an island. We can grow through social exchanges with others.
It's also worth mentioning that Marriage Equality was granted to all Americans under this lovely duo. Venus is relationships, Jupiter is the expansion principle (as well as courts), and Leo rules the heart! It's no wonder the whole world is hashtagging #LoveWins !!!
Venus will soon turn retrograde, demanding our attention for the next few months. She will remain in orb of Jupiter through August, so this interpretation will echo throughout the next several weeks. Venus usually moves more quickly, but due to her retrograde, she will remain close to Jupiter much longer. To have this heavenly conjunction last so long, we are so very blessed! It certainly lightens the mood and we barely notice Saturn’s returned to Scorpio (for now.)
We are delighted to have our first Full Moon on July 1st just after sunset at 10:19pm EDT, at 10⁰ Capricorn. Full Moons are powerful periods of realization and reflection. Pluto joins the Moon and opposes the Sun, who is conjoined with Mars. Where do we need to be more assertive? This is a very potent and powerful dynamic, but someone isn’t very happy and something is calling for balance.
The Cancer/Capricorn polarity highlights the home/career. Maybe power needs to be redistributed at home or in the work place. Perhaps this manifests as the job being too demanding while you desire to be home more. If you are working too hard, you need to plan a day to relax. Give that to yourself! Are you a stay-at home mom who misses her career? There are ways to have both a vibrant home life as well as career. Or maybe you are loving your job, but you feel a tug from your family who misses seeing you as much. We are invited to fine-tune our balance in both worlds.
The Full Moon aspects the Nodes of Destiny. We have all of the facts from Mercury, now we need to go with our gut and take action. We have a choice to do what’s easy and continue to go through the motions even if it’s less than satisfactory; or we may be called to step out of our comfort zone in order to serve our personal/spiritual growth. We may be reminded of a wound that is keeping us in a restrictive pattern. In order to move towards more happiness and abundance in our lives, we may have to look at that wound in a new way. Neptune supports a shift in perspective─ a higher awareness that all is in Divine Order.
Cancer crabs carry their homes on their backs. The Capricorn sea goat makes a steady climb up the mountain. How difficult it would be to climb up a mountain carrying too many things! Let go of something weighing you down, so you can make it up the mountain a little easier. Perhaps it’s time to let go of a bad habit that holds you back, declutter your surroundings or make peace with a bad memory. Whatever it is, you already know what needs to be done!
July 1st-7th, Mars catches up to the Nodes of Destiny as well. Pay attention to who you meet. You may be called upon to serve, take action, or to stand up for yourself. The Sun remains in harmonious aspect to Neptune, allowing creativity. Let your intuitive side flow. Everything can be a moving meditation this week.
During the second week of July, Saturn’s retrograde through Scorpio tightens its square to Jupiter and Venus, tempering all the fun that was had last week with the Venus/Jupiter conjunction. Saturn’s here to remind us that hard work pays the bills! But luckily, the serious and sometimes austere Saturn is in turn tempered by all of the jollity of Venus and Jupiter. So we come back into balance of work and play. This seems to the theme of the month! Enjoy the fruits of your labor, but don’t exhaust all of your resources.
Saturn in Scorpio can be too deep, too serious to endure at times. Fortunately, Saturn is only here for a short stay to tie up loose ends from all the work we did together from October of 2012 until December 2014. We still need to transmute some lead into gold. Scorpio rules the most serious and the most taboo. Jupiter and Venus lend a hand to help finalize estates, wills, and to help you find more understanding. Also, with Jupiter and Venus in expressive Leo, we have the opportunity to heal any self-imposed limitations holding us back from sexual freedom. This transit is in effect through mid-August
Happy Fourth of July!!! It’s a great weekend for a celebration. We won’t feel like the party is over until July 5th when the moon sets off a T-square with Venus and Saturn.
On Monday, July 6th, the Sun comes into exact opposition with Pluto. Themes from the Full Moon echo. It may seem like someone or something is blocking your attempts to succeed. Pluto is about evolution, so you may be called to make a change today. Ask yourself, what your deepest desire is, from your core, and make moves from there. Also, think back to the first week of December, and the beginning of April. This is a story related to personal power and allowing yourself to shine.
On Wednesday, July 8th, Mars makes an exact trine to Neptune. It’s a great day to work on house projects, or to work from home at your own pace; Creative action. Mars is softened by Neptune, so it may even be that relaxation is available to you.
In the afternoon, the Moon makes a hard aspect. Beware of a possible frustration.
Also today, July 8th, Mercury finally concludes his long stay in Gemini, arriving on the threshold of Cancer. The buzz of the mind slows down a bit, as Mercury in Cancer consults how it feels in order to process information. Trust your instincts. Cancer is also a nostalgic; take a trip down memory lane. Reflect on your progress and give yourself some credit! If you’ve been meaning to have an important conversation with a family member, now is a good time. Mercury will be in Cancer until July 23rd
The week concludes on “Saturnday,” July 11th, when the Moon forms very challenging aspects to Saturn, Jupiter, Venus and Pluto. It may feel like your needs aren’t being met. Saturn says “no” today. It’s not the best day for your bargaining chips. Therefore, it’s a good day to get some extra chores done. The aspects today are difficult, so prepare for a challenging day.
As the night draws near, you may feel like rebelling against the day’s frustrations. The Sun comes into exact opposition with freedom-loving Uranus on Sunday night; but with the lightning speed of Uranus, this urge to break the mold will be felt all weekend. Do something extraordinary. Get weird, wild; be spontaneous. Uranus often brings surprises, or sudden realizations. Make a discovery today or tomorrow.
On Monday, July 13th, we have a Mercury/Neptune trine. Inspiration may overflow from the weekend’s adventures. Thoughts are free-flowing, allowing for a creative day.
Venus moves ahead of Jupiter to form an exact square to Saturn on July 14th. This brings up an issue related to our values. Is there something that’s been bothering you in regards to a certain relationship? Or maybe you become aware that you aren’t meeting someone else’s expectations. This could also be about the way you distribute your resources. If you spent too much money during the Venus/Jupiter conjunction last week, this is when you receive your credit card statement and you realize that maybe you should take it easy this weekend.
.::::IN SPACE NEWS::::.
Today, July 14th, 2015, is when the NASA mission New Horizons reaches Pluto. As of this article’s writing, we have blurry pictures of Pluto and its largest moon, Charon. But today, humanity embarks even further on our mission to explore space. Not only will we obtain high resolution images of Pluto and its moons for the first time, but the craft will continue on into the Kuiper Belt. Who knows what more may be discovered about our trans-plutonian friends out there!
On Wednesday July 15th, we have a New Moon at 23⁰ Cancer. So wherever this degree falls in your chart, is where you are beginning something new. Cancer, again, is where we nurture ourselves and others.
Venus is at 29⁰ Leo, still in a tight square to Saturn. 29⁰ of any sign is very potent, stressing the importance of that archetype. But in Leo, this degree really emphasizes your heart, what you love and the need to express your heart’s desire. What are you proud of? Are you proud of what you do? Are you proud of who you are partnered with? A square implies that there is a restriction here. If it’s been awhile since you expressed your appreciation for your partner, today is a good day to do so. Or maybe you’ve been too generous with your resources. Use your resources wisely!
Mars and Mercury tightly oppose Pluto. Beware of your sharp tongue! Words are very powerful today. Speak wisely. Make sure that what you say is truly coming from your heart. That’s not to say that everything must be sugarcoated. It means that you must come with integrity. Speak your truth! If you haven’t been able to be truly clear with your communication (for whatever reason), now is the time.
These Lunar charts play out in our personal lives as well as in the world. Pluto represents personal power, but also corporations. Mars conjoined Mercury implies strong words, written or spoken. We may see some strong reactions against the TPP Bill, which was quietly passed at the end of June which allows corporations to sue countries who don’t want to sell their product. As ecstatic as I am about Marriage Equality, we may see some state reactions towards this decision as well.
Throughout the rest of the week, Mercury remains close to Mars in Cancer and forms a square with Uranus in Aries. You may feel compelled to take action in regards to a living situation or a family member. A sudden realization may strike, inspiring you to take action. It’s also a great time to dig in the yard or work from home.
Make good use of pent up energy on Saturday, July 18th when Mercury makes an exact square to Uranus. This is a very hyper combination. If you don’t use that energy wisely, it could manifest as anxiety. Your wits are about you, so get out into the world!
We won’t see the beautiful Venusian Goddess in the sky tonight because she will be occulted by the Moon as they both waltz into Virgo together. Venus will remain here at 0⁰ Virgo for two whole weeks, as she has arrived at her station degree. Venus begins to demand our attention now, although we still have a week before she actually turns retrograde on July 25th.
The majority of Venus’ retrograde will take place in heartfelt Leo. However, for the first two weeks she is in Virgo. Virgo is detail oriented. The lower expression of Venus in Virgo is nit-picky towards the self and others. Venus in Virgo wants themselves and everyone around them to be the best they can be. Venus in Virgo recognizes the greatest potential. However, even if criticism comes from a place of love, it may come off as unsupportive.
Virgo is also concerned with service and hard work. When Venus in Virgo is at her highest expression, she is a high priestess; offering her skills in a form of service. She wields a sheath of wheat, which she has steadily cultivated.
Virgo is sometimes understood as “Virginal,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean chaste. The esoteric meaning of virgin implies an independent, autonomous woman, who cultivated herself to the point of ripeness (hence the sheath of wheat). She is learned, skilled and is concerned with developing the self to perfection (purity). Therefore, the confusion becomes obvious: A virgin is pure, having little to do with whom she has laid, but instead, how she has honed her skills. Virgo is the 6th sign of the zodiac, not yet joining with others in the 7th sign of Libra. Therefore, it matters not if the Virgo Goddess is a holy whore or chaste; all that is important is that she has cultivated herself with care.
So before Venus retrogrades back into Leo, she asks: “You know what you love, but what about your skills?”
July 22nd may bring a lot of emotional energy, or a strong sense of urgency. You feel the need to do something important that has been previously sidelined. Mercury and Saturn aid with constructive, grounded thought.
The Sun enters Leo, the sign of its rulership, at 11:30 pm EDT on July 22nd. The Sun is at home in Leo, as both have to do with self-expression. The Sun is obviously concerned with shining. Leo is a playful energy, so do what you love! Leo is a fixed sign, the unwavering heat of summer; it has staying power, just like true love. Leo also has to do with pride. Are you proud of yourself? Are you proud of those you love? Express yourself. Show off your children, your spouse, talents, creations, or whatever it may be! If you are proud of something, it means your heart is in it! The shadow side of Leo is having so much pride, that one is reluctant to admit being in the wrong. As if our shininess were dulled by being wrong─ but of course that’s not true. We are all wrong sometimes! If we weren’t wrong, we wouldn’t be human. But Leo is ruled by the Sun, and the Sun is not human. The Sun is Ra, the Sun is the Sun God and He is worshiped. Similarly, Leo appreciates being acknowledged for his greatness. Don’t we all? We all have our unique ability to shine; let’s honor each other’s greatness. Sat Nam!
The following day, Thursday, July 23rd, Mercury follows the Sun into Leo. It’s a high energy day with all this new fire. We are receiving lots of inspiration from Uranus as well. It’s a good day to wrap the week up early, because we are feeling a fun weekend ahead of us.
Friday, July 24th, things just seem to flow with ease! The intensity of Pluto is more subdued for a while and we can all feel a bit lighter! We want to do something extraordinary. That said, Mars is approaching its exact square with Uranus, which happens in the early morning of July 25th. But with these two fast planets, we already feel them strongly. Sometimes this combination can lead to so much spontaneity that recklessness ensues and accidents can happen. Absolutely have a ton of fun this weekend, but be careful! Venus also stations retrograde this weekend. Venus retrogrades aren’t the best time to begin new relationships. With the wild and unpredictable energy in the air this weekend, it may be best to hang out with close friends or people you haven’t seen in a while.
Venus stations retrograde on July 25th at 5:29 am, EDT. Venus has to do with resources and she wants us to double check our spending. Our resources are our time, our energy, talents and our money. Whatever it is that we exchange or share with others, Venus retrogrades invite us to make adjustments here.
I’ve written a more in depth article on Venus retrograde. Stay tuned! It should be posted soon.
On Sunday, July 26th, the weekend’s wild energy continues when Uranus stations retrograde, amplifying his voice. Wherever Uranus is transiting your chart, is where you will hear him roar. Uranus is not a quiet planet. He is rambunctious, but in a way that serves the highest good. He tears down that walls in your life that block you, showing you a new vision. When you have an “aha” moment, you can thank Uranus. When you know that you must leave one situation and pursue another, without needing any other reason except that you know you have to─ that’s Uranus. While in Aries, Uranus is all about turning us into pioneers on our path. We boldly go forth into unknown territory. The only thing we know is that we must. Uranus has been in Aries since 2010 and will continue to shake things up in our Aries houses until 2019.
July 26th-31st, the square between Saturn and Jupiter closes tighter. Both energies have been equally strong, so this is a time of temperance. Hard work is balanced with play; expansion balances constriction; seriousness grounds the whimsical. With squares, we know what needs to be done, but we don’t want to do it because it’s hard! We need Saturn to integrate all that we’ve learned with expansive Jupiter. Jupiter calls for enjoyment and exploration and Saturn tells us to stop. Jupiter tells Saturn that he’s being too serious, so quit worrying about getting old and to live in the moment. Then Saturn responds that Jupiter should stop being so frivolous and to start an IRS account, and furthermore, that he should stop smoking because one day it will make him sick! Jupiter says, go out and explore yourself. Go to the university and study abroad. Then Saturn comes along and says, you have to pay off your student debt now; apply your knowledge to a sustainable career. Gratification will not be instant. Saturn knows that slow and steady wins the race.
This is a very important 20 year cycle that plays out in our lives; but this cycle plays out in the world in a very major way. I hope to do a more in depth article in the future, so stay tuned! In short, I’ll give a small example: as we grow and new frontiers are embarked on (Jupiter), we must implement rules (Saturn), and become mindful about the dangers. That’s why we created speed limits with the creation of cars. So where do the limits come in with corporations? With genetic modification? With surveillance? With abusing Earth’s resources? With social media? Growth is essential to life, but safe parameters must be implemented if recklessness abounds.
The Moon sets of a Grand Trine in fire on the 27th, inspiring creativity and lots of action. Expect a fast paced week!
July concludes with our second Full Moon on July 31st, at 6:43 am EDT. Our Blue Moon will be best observed Thursday and Friday night. The Moon is at 7⁰55’ Aquarius and the Sun is at 7⁰55’ Leo. Both are creative and compassionate signs who love to share their energy with the world. Leo creates for expression’s sake, while Aquarius organizes ideas and people into a group. “It takes a village,” is the motto of Aquarius. A group effort has a greater chance of making an impact in the world. Aquarius concerns itself with humanity and social issues. We are all ONE on this planet. We are now in the Age of Aquarius, where we are becoming a global society. Aquarius rules the internet, which has helped us all to become more connected. China is no longer half a world away, but one click away. Information has become increasingly available, on an exponential level. The positive is that we are collectively becoming more open minded. The downside is that our brains have never operated this way in our entire human existence, so we are still learning how to adapt. We are realizing that one person’s sorrow can affect millions. The only way to survive these times is through compassion, love and understanding. We find this through the heart of Leo. We are beginning to realize the negative impact of greed and big business has on our environment. We only have one Earth. So this Full Moon asks us to “be the change you want to see in the world,” as Ghandi once said. How can we express (Leo) our ideals (Aquarius) for a new and better world? How can we get involved with other groups that can work towards something bigger than us? Whatever it is that you feel passionately about: composting, recycling, participating in neighborhood or beach clean-ups; or maybe you are really brave and you want to lobby for or against something. We all have a part we can play.
June 25th, 2015 was an extremely important day in American history. Marriage equality was granted to all. The immense amount of love exploding from the hearts of millions raised the vibration of the planet. Not everyone was happy about the decision, but they will have no choice but to eventually keep up with the times, or the time will leave them behind. Just as we all evolve within our individual lifetimes, we also evolve collectively as a human race. In the same way, our planet Earth is spiritually evolving. As we raise our vibrational frequencies, the Earth will do so as well. The highest vibration is LOVE. The more love we share with the Earth and the more compassion we share with one another, the more love we experience in our own being. One person who raises their vibration, affects ten others. This is exponential.
Aquarius rules the electric current; Leo rules the heart. Aquarius rules the electromagnetic field that is generated by the human heart. The Earth also has an electromagnetic field, which is generated by the Sun (ruled by Leo)! Everything is intimately connected, which we are just beginning to understand on a scientific level. But on a spiritual level, the results are obvious: When you raise your vibration, you can observe the ripple effects on those around you. When you raise your vibration, doors open, the world gets a little brighter. It’s easier said than done to simply raise your vibration. It takes some effort and it may take time. But Aquarius is a very innovative sign, with the help of the Leonean inner child. There is a way through every block. Aquarius is ruled by Saturn and Uranus, so we can build new innovative structures that better serve humanity. Let’s elevate each other!
Love, Light and Peace to the Planet!
Love, Light and Peace to ALL!
Catherine Urban, Astrologer
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