Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

May 2013

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

Mercury Transits Aries April 28-May 12

Remember in March how Sun, Venus and Mars all moved into Aries, leaving Mercury floating in the seas of Pisces? Mercury, in charge of communication and exchange, which goes much better in dry environments, has difficulty making quick work of it while in Pisces. So with all of the fiery energy arising with Mars, Sun, Ketu and Venus in occupation of Aries, it was perhaps helpful to have the part of our minds that can tend to race, judge and overanalyze in the watery, universal environment that is the sign of Pisces.

By the end of April, Mercury will have joined the other four planets in Aries, and for just under a week, there will be an immense amount of planetary energy contributing to the scene coming from Mars' fire sign, Aries.

The latter part of March seemed to be filled with drama and tragedy for many people and places. The conglomeration of planets in the sign of Aries, which happens on a small scale almost every year, can certainly contribute to the possibility of explosive situations. This year, with the conjunction of Saturn and Rahu in Libra which opposes the sign of Aries, we are experiencing a dramatic and transformative time period in which many of the planets are lining up on the Aries-Libra axis. Add the passionate nature of Mars and Venus, the lords of Aries and Libra, to the churning that the Rahu-Ketu axis causes, and don't forget the pressure of Saturn and this adds up to a recipe for some challenging biscuits, especially depending on where this axis falls on one's personal chart.

For some, this planetary combination could result in inspiring positive change, fueling spiritual practices and wisely increasing productivity. For others, this combination could be imposing difficult situations that challenge to the core, that highlight the fears that arise in environments of chaos and pressure and demand levels of courage and ingenuity that may seem impossible based on past experience. If you are in the former group, realize that you can hold space for those that are in the latter group. If you are in the latter group, know that you are supported and that beneath the difficulties lie layers of strength that will help you walk your path.

By the time Mercury enters Aries, our quick planet will race through, passing exact opposition with Saturn on May 4, passing Mars on May 7, passing Ketu on May 8 and passing Sun on May 11. Moving quickly to catch up with Venus, which happens later in the month, Mercury finally exits to Taurus on May 12. We could therefore feel quite a bit of forward momentum during this first half of May when we have a great deal of planetary energy moving forward through Aries and being counterbalanced by the Rahu-Saturn conjunction. Ready or not.

Venus Transits Taurus May 4-28

Venus moves out of the crowded environment of Aries and into her own earth sign, Taurus, on May 4, for a quick transit that takes her past Jupiter, ushering him into Gemini at month's end.

So what can we do with Venus' transit through Taurus? With all of the Mars-influenced planets in Aries, things could be feeling intense and hot. The influence of Venus should not be underestimated though, due to Venus' current lordship of Jupiter, Saturn and Rahu, all in occupation of Taurus and Libra, Venus' domains. With Venus also in its own sign, this strengthens the status of all planets in her signs.

The faster moving planets: Sun, Mars and Mercury, will be blazing through Aries, stirring up actions, movement, situations and self-expression that is very obvious, dramatic and aggressive. The slower moving planets are acting under the influence of Venus, who values relationship, connection and beauty. Here we have the basis of building and growing in a peaceful, sustainable and graceful way.

Realizing that the dramatic events that may happen in our lives, no matter how close or distant, happen for a reason, we must choose how to react to them and to allow them to unfold on the surface of our lives while at the same time we are knitting a strong, flexible fabric that supports our growth and understanding in a beautiful, compassionate way.

With Mars in Aries and Venus in Taurus, we have a condition where the two planets that represent archetypally the male and female gender are in very strong positions, creating an environment of inspired passion. This could be an exciting time to start new relationships or businesses, to embark on artistic projects or to begin studies that require both discipline and creativity.

Venus in Taurus can be well channelled into daily activities like making art, gardening, beautifying the home or yard, redecorating, socializing and promoting love and connection generally.

By May 16, Venus will again be visible in the evening sky. The recent transformation of Venus from morning star to evening star could parallel a transformation of how we love and relate. Venus remains a few steps ahead of the Sun throughout 2013, shining in the evening sky as our inspiration and reminder of the fierce beauty that life has to offer. On May 28, there will be a conjunction of Venus and Jupiter in the evening sky, just after sunset, with Mercury visible nearby.

New Moon Solar Eclipse in Aries May 9

The second in the pair of eclipses this spring occurs at the juncture between May 9-10, when the Sun and Moon conjoin at 25šº Aries, in the lunar mansion Bharani. This conjunction occurs at about 6pm on May 9 for the Mountain time zone, US, but the eclipse will be visible only to those in the South Pacific and Australia.

All of the planets in occupation of Aries will be pulled into this eclipse path (Sun, Moon, Mars and Mercury); each one will be within three degrees of the Ketu-Rahu axis degree. All of these planets are in Mars' fire sign, Aries, which we have discussed as being environmentally intense and initiatory. In the last eclipse during the full Moon of April 25, all of the planets but Jupiter and Mercury were caught in the eclipse axis; this month all of the planets except for Jupiter and Venus will be entwined in the eclipse energy.

There are a few interesting synchronicities that I see with this new Moon eclipse. The two planets that escape the eclipse energy are Jupiter and Venus, who are both priestly (brahmin) planets and who are somewhat nemesis to one another as the teachers of the gods and demons, respectively. The days of the week ruled by Jupiter and Venus are Thursday and Friday, respectively, and this new Moon eclipse happens during the transition of Thursday to Friday.

Another thing is that Bharani, the lunar mansion that lies entirely within Aries (13°20' – 26°40'), is ruled by the planet Venus. The meaning of bharani is "she who bears" implying the strength of the feminine principle. The symbol of Bharani is a yoni, the female sexual organ, while the deity lord of Bharani is Yama, lord of death. So, we have symbols here of both birth and death, certainly of strength and transformation.

What does the eclipse energy bring to the mix? Think about what causes eclipses, what we think of as the "shadow planets," Rahu and Ketu, which are actually abstract places that indicate the points in space where simply by passing by them, the Sun and Moon fall into the condition of having their normal ability to shine impaired by one another. This is an interesting dance involving shadows, abstraction, light, darkness and timing. Much like our day to day life, we are charged with trying to understand what is real and what is not, when to move and when to stay and which light is real and which is a reflection.

What the obscurity of an eclipse offers to us is an opportunity to focus inward on the light of truth that shines from our inner selves. When what we are experiencing in our outer lives becomes turbulent, unclear, confused or chaotic, we are being charged to identify and use the inner anchor of our consciousness. Meditation and withdrawal are great remedies to eclipse energy. Especially during amavasya, the day leading up to the moment of conjunction of Sun and Moon each month, it is a good time to step back from daily activities as much as possible and focus within. For those in the US, this will be from the evening of May 8 to the evening of May 9.

Mercury Transits Taurus May 13-May 27

We're back to Mercury's break-neck pace, moving into Taurus on May 13 and out to his own sign of Gemini on May 27. This indicates a group movement of planets into Gemini at the end of May: Mercury on May 27, Venus on May 28 and Jupiter on May 30.

For the two week period that Mercury moves through Venus' earth sign (with Venus), we may have a good window as far as writing, speaking, communication and merchandising. I'm also getting a theme of education and higher learning; the initiation and establishment of new programs of learning aimed at personal growth, expansion and expression. Taurus is an earth sign with fixed quality; seeds planted in the soil of Taurus could do well in the long run. Earth signs are realms of material manifestation. With the mutable nature of Mercury, the connective nature of Venus and the expansive nature of Jupiter in attendance, it seems great combination for laying groundwork and establishing a home base from which to branch out.

Sun Transits Taurus May 15-June 14

The Sun moves out of its sign of exaltation, Aries, into Taurus on May 15. The Sun spends about a one-month period in each sign. The powerful light and energy given by the Sun will fuel the other planets moving through Taurus without ever coming too close to burn anyone's britches. The Sun brings life to our purposes and projects. The transit of the Sun through Taurus could inspire us to utilize art and love to make our day-to-day lives more meaningful and beautiful.

Mars Enters Taurus May 22

With Mars exiting Aries and entering Taurus on May 22, we may feel a sense of relief as the many planets passing through Aries were also passing through an opposition from Saturn and Rahu, which can create a sense of pressure, difficulty or create dramatic situations. The balance of Mars-Venus energy will tip again toward Venus, as for the days between May 22-27 all of the planets (including the Moon May 22-23) will be located in Venus' signs, Taurus and Libra.

Although Mars doesn't count Taurus as his favorite sign to traverse, its not horrible, and we could use the power and drive of Mars to push forward with the new projects and paradigms that we are setting into motion. The thing about Taurus is that inspires us with its Venusian quality to beautify our surroundings and to create connective situations and environments. This kind of attention to pretty details and compassionate approaches could be somewhat frustrating to the Mars part of us that just wants to forge ahead and get things done. The trick will be to satisfy both the clear active goals of Mars and the aesthetic needs of Venus. Try to build and create with both effeciency and inspired beauty, which may succeed in pleasing everyone involved.

Full Moon in Scorpio May 24

The Moon waxes to the point of fullness, which is exact opposition to the Sun, on the evening of Friday, May 24, at about 10º of Mars' water sign, Scorpio. Remember that the start of this lunar cycle was with the new Moon in Aries during the solar eclipse. This is an interesting lunar cycle in that both the start and culmination of the Moon's growing this month occur in Mars' signs. So while the end of May shows most of the planets occupying Venus' signs, Mars' influence is still quite pronounced due to his rulership of both the new and full Moons.

The sign of Scorpio is pregnant with content and feeling that occurs below the surface of things. It is watery, deep and intense, the well of energy that Mars taps each time we want to get something done. This full Moon may shed light on the feminine, stable and deep aspects and implications of that which we are working through at this time.

The endings indicated by Pisces in March and the beginnings indicated by Aries in April are followed up by the establishment of forms that we see with the planets in Taurus in May. Scorpio, the sign opposite Taurus, gives us a glimpse into how what we are establishing will reflect on our inner explorations and transformations as time marches on.

Jupiter Enters Gemini May 30

The planet Jupiter, known as Brihaspati or Guru in Sanskrit, spends about one year in each sign, completing the trip around all signs of the zodiac in 12 years. On May 30, Jupiter moves from Taurus to Gemini, Mercury's air sign, where he will traverse throughout the next year.

To get a clue of what Jupiter's transit through Gemini may be like for you, think of what was happening in your life from June 2001-June 2002. Especially in regards to personal expansion through higher education, spiritual path, teachers, legality and abundance, all concerns of Jupiter. For the first half of that transit, through January 2002, we had Rahu in Gemini with Jupiter, much like Rahu is now with Saturn. There may be echos of what was occurring then that come up in this next year while Jupiter again makes his way through Gemini.

Jupiter is in charge of expansion, joy and growth. Without a healthy Jupiter, we don't care so much about learning, gaining wisdom or evolving. Jupiter will be In Gemini, which is a sign of Mercury and very supportive of learning, teaching, communication, speaking, writing and travel. As May transpires, remember that we are finishing up the transit of Jupiter through Taurus and preparing for the transit of Jupiter through Gemini.

When Jupiter moves to Gemini, it will cast an auspicious aspect on Saturn and Rahu in Libra. We may feel this as a shift toward having a more positive view of whatever difficulties or tragedies may be arising in our experience. By regarding our experiences as learning related, we may be privy to the key that explains somewhat the mystery of why things unfold as they do.

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