Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

March 2002

by Kerry Shamblin

Calculations are done using the Chitrapaksha ayanamsha and the mean node. Timings are based on Mountain Time Zone, US.

Mars Transits Aries March 1 - April 4

Fiery Mars will enjoy his own element by transiting through the sign of Aries, which he rules. Mars will no doubt be exercising his penchant for drive and power this month. Mars in Aries will inject strong initiative into current projects. Remember that Mars is not only the god of war, but also of engineering, agriculture, and energy. Perhaps Aries, with its feeling of new beginnings, will be the transformation ground for our current energy needs. Good activities this March would be gardening, planning or designing, cooking, building, or pioneering in new directions. Tap into Mars' courage and independence this month, confidently aiming at your goal. On the other hand, Mars in Aries could see some fiery tempers and aggression. Aries can be quick to anger and narcissistic, which could certainly become the ground for conflict. If you feel yourself flying off the handle, remember the slow and steady Saturn bound Mercury, and let yourself slow down before you respond with anger.

Rahu/Ketu Change Signs March 1

The fact that Rahu has moved into the same sign that Saturn now occupies could make for interesting results for those with distinctive planetary placements in the sign of Taurus. Of course everyone has Taurus somewhere in their birth chart, so we can all expect to feel the transition of Rahu into this new sign, and may begin to feel pulled outward and upward in a new realm of our life. Rahu's occupation of the same sign as Saturn should make for an intense time until Saturn plods into Gemini in July. Wherever this conjunction transits in your chart, expect the slow, deliberate energy of Saturn combined with the subtle, outreaching energy of Rahu in the sign of Taurus (creativity, harmony, art, material luxury) to cause situations that force us to reconcile the force within ourselves that wants to engage and be a part of the outer world (Rahu) with that which is set on making peace with life by practicing detachment and letting go (Saturn.)

On the other side of the axis, Ketu has moved from fiery Sagittarius into the fixed water sign, Scorpio, ruled by Mars. Ketu's transit through Scorpio (which mirrors Rahus transit through Taurus) will last until August 2003. The nodes move in retrograde motion compared to the regular path of the planets. Therefore, they enter a sign through its late degrees. Ketu has been known to draw a person into themselves, and to cause inquiry and self examination to flourish. Ketu out of control can cause us to contract inward too much, and become ensnared in our own negative energy. Doubt, disturbance, and self-criticism can result if we do not keep the balance and perspective of all the planets in mind. Ketu is also instrumental for those on the spiritual path, and its residence in the intense, deep, and probing sign of Scorpio could mean strange, far-out (or in) journeys for the seeker in whatever realm that is represented by Scorpio in ones birth chart.

This movement of the nodes is certainly the event of the month astrologically. Each person may feel the transition in a unique way, but I predict that we will all feel it, especially as Rahu represents mass consciousness and the masses in general. Rahu in Taurus will be transiting the 6tth house of health in the chart of the United States. We could see health issues come to the front this next 18 months; Rahu is associated with epidemics as well as abnormal sensitivity of the mind and nervous system. Its possible that Americans may suffer from a case of mass hysteria this coming year, but some may argue that that is in fact always the case.

New Moon March 13

The new Moon occurs again in the transitional zone between signs, this time between Aquarius and Pisces. As described last month, these sandhi degrees can be rather surprising and fertile ground for change. This new Moon occurs in the nakshatra, lunar mansion, of Purva Bhadrapada, ruled by Jupiter. Purva Bhadrapada can be fertile ground for a fiery temperament. This would be a good new Moon for focusing on projects that fulfill a vision for the future or engaging in efforts that are aimed at a common goal. Independence and self-reliance are known in this nakshatra. Beware of tipping the scales into selfish behavior, which may bring on suffering from accident, injury, or attack. Keeping universal goals in mind will serve to honor the lofty goals of Purva Bhadrapada. The Moon will be exactly new mid-day on the 13th, and will then move into expansive Pisces, convening with the beautiful Venus which will give creative and fertile energy to new projects. The waxing Moon will then pass by Mars in Aries, lending his initiative and power to her as she grows. She meets with serious Saturn next in Taurus, which could serve keep our growth and change through this lunar cycle disciplined and even. Rahu, the north node of the Moon entered into Taurus on February 28th, and this will be the Moon's first encounter with the dragon's head in her own sign of exaltation since February 1985. The Moon is particularly sensitive to encounters with Rahu, so do not be surprised if negative influences beyond your personal control come into play during the time that the Moon conjoins Rahu, from March 19-21.

Moon Conjunct Rahu March 19 - March 21

Some understanding of the effects of Rahu and Ketu, the nodes of the Moon, can be gleaned from examining what exactly these shadowy "planets" are. Vedic astrology gives great importance to the role of Rahu and Ketu in a chart. Generally they are seen as subtle and difficult energies that form somewhat of an axis within an individual's chart, as they are always exactly opposite one another. Rahu and Ketu are the points in space at which the path of the Moon crosses the ecliptic. The ecliptic is an imaginary ring around the Earth that is essentially the projection into space of the equator, another closer in ring around the earth. The nodes of the Moon mark the places where the Moon's orbit can cross the path of the Sun from our Earthly perspective. If the Sun and Moon meet (which would be a new Moon) in the proximity of one of the nodes, an eclipse will occur. Hence the perspective of Rahu and Ketu being difficult to handle and powerful points in space. Their symbolic ability is to overcome and consume the power of our two brightest luminaries, the Sun and Moon. Along the same lines, the energy of any planet in conjunction with the nodes may be either obstructed, liberated, or negated. The north, or ascending node, Rahu, is where the Moon crosses the ecliptic to the north, and promotes ascending, expanding, and externalizing energies. The south, descending node, Ketu, takes us downward, inward, and causes our contraction. Rahu has been described as similar in energy to Saturn, and Ketu is compared with Mars.

Full Moon in Virgo March 28

Not wishing to end on such a crazy note, I will once again come back to the journey of the Moon, that monthly rhythm that when followed by even the most amateur heavenly observer, can create a powerful sense of wholeness and understanding. The Moon reaches fullness on the morning of March 28, and will be in the Mercury ruled sign of Virgo. At that time, the Sun and Mercury will be opposite the Moon, in Pisces, showing an ease in greater understanding and communication. The Rahu/Saturn conjunction will be in the ninth house from the Moon which shows a fortunate, graceful, and expansive relationship with those difficult planets. Jupiter will be in the tenth from the Moon, indicating success and grace in our worldly actions and communications. Mars and Venus will be in the eighth house from the Full Moon, in Aries, which could indicate adventure, creativity and drive in the realm of the unknown.

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