Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

July 2014

by Kerry Shamblin

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

Mercury Resumes Direct Motion July 1

Our planet of communication and exchange resumes direct motion on July 1 after a retrograde period beginning June 6. Mercury rewinds all the way to the beginning of his own sign, Gemini, with this retrograde cycle, making his entire transit through Gemini last from May 22 – July 28. This is a good two-month stretch of strong Mercury energy that should be supportive for writing, studies, data analysis, travel, exchange of goods and anything that requires quickness and flexibility of thought.

The month of July could be a little smoother when it comes to dealing with communication devices and Internet technology. Direct motion will calm the strong Mercury energy, hopefully allowing us to slow down, thinking and speaking with clarity and deliberation.

For the first part of July, through July 12-13, Mercury and Sun will be receiving the aspect of Rahu from Libra and the influence of Mars through Mars' occupation of Virgo, which gives a sign aspect to Gemini. This could continue to amplify and bring energy to Mercury pursuits.

Ketu Gandanta Through July 31

Just a reminder about Ketu moving through the gandanta point between Aries and Pisces, as mentioned in the June forecast. The last time we saw Ketu going through this gandanta point was November-December 1995.

On June 23, Ketu has moved into this small place in the zodiac that is an important juncture point. In the same way, we may find ourselves at the fringes of a difficult place that we may have been avoiding traversing for some time, due to our awareness of the difficulty of moving forward.

As we regard some situation that may seem impassible or insurmountable yet inevitable, the energy of Ketu may be the best remedy. Ketu is concerned only with liberation from the suffering of worldly activity and its natural direction is upward.

If we can relax into the awareness that all of the difficulty and bondage that we may be feeling as we navigate through life is really the perfect recipe for us to experience our karmic lessons, it may help us to more gracefully walk in the physical world as a spiritual being. And specifically now, to allow ourselves to rise above the blockages in order to move forward.

Full Moon in Sagittarius July 12

Just before sunrise on July 12, the Moon reaches its point of fullness at 27° Sagittarius in the lunar mansion of Purvashada. This is an auspicious day known as Guru Purnima, when the Moon is full in the month of Ashada. This means a full Moon in Jupiter's sign of Sagittarius, the natural sign of teachers and gurus. Since this full Moon occurs just before sunrise on July 12 (Saturday) we are technically still in Friday, since the Vedic calendar considers a day as lasting from sunrise to sunrise, so Guru Purnima will be celebrated on calendar date July 11.

This year's Guru Purnima is particularly auspicious, with the Moon residing in Jupiter's sign and Jupiter residing in the Moon's sign, creating a mutual exchange of signs. With Jupiter (Guru) in Cancer just past the degree of exaltation, this further elevates the good energy of this full Moon.

For those with important placements in the signs of Cancer and/or Sagittarius, there may be a particular experience of blessing, abundance and grace during this time. For all, these energies should be felt on some level, in some arena of life.

Rahu-Ketu axis changes signs July 12

The Rahu-Ketu axis spends about 1.5 years in each sign pair, moving through the zodiac in the opposite direction from the other planets. The past 1.5 years has seen Ketu moving through Mars' sign of Aries with Rahu moving through Libra, Venus' air sign.

The significant impact on this transit was the conjunction of Rahu with Saturn, who has been occupying Libra, his sign of exaltation, since November 2011. The combination of these two powerful and slow moving planets has heavily impacted the sign of Libra and those people who have significant placements in Libra and Aries in the birth chart. With Saturn causing pressure and Rahu creating chaos, we have seen collectively and individually a series of events ranging from natural disasters to accidents that have caused serious trouble for many.

The separation of Saturn and Rahu may signal some easing of difficult situations or periods of time based on this challenging transit combination that we have experienced since January 2013.

To know how this new setting of Rahu-Ketu may affect one's life, we can reflect back to the last transit of Rahu-Ketu throug the signs of Virgo and Pisces, which was from December 1995-May 1997.

Rahu in Mercury's earth sign of Virgo will aspect the other earth signs (Taurus and Capricorn) during this transit. Rahu's inherent nature of desire may begin to be felt more in the material realm whereas it was focused more on the thought and idea realm while in Libra.

With Virgo being the sign of health and disease in the natural zodiac, perhaps we will see innovations in the health field. Integrating "foreign" or "new" techniques to wellness may become more mainstream or accepted by the masses. Rahu is also the natural indicator for poisons and pharmaceutical medicines while Virgo is also the sign of harvest, foods, and herbal medicines. This could lead to research and innovation with herbs and foods as medicine, or in another possible manifestation, the need to heal the land from the poisons that are commonly applied to crops as fertilizers.

Ketu in Pisces may afford us fresh perspectives on our pursuits in the realm of spirituality. We may collectively move toward an interest in practices like meditation and yoga in order to reorient our lives in a way that addresses issues of life/death or bondage/liberation. Depending on where Pisces sits in the natal chart, we may feel a new sense of freedom, expansion or upward movement in some area of our life, for example in our relationships (7th house) or career (10th house.)

Mars Enters Libra July 13

Just as Rahu is slithering into Virgo, Mars prepares to move forward into Libra, giving a Mars-Rahu conjunction right at the border of Virgo and Libra during July 12-13. They are in effect changing places as they move through the threshold between these two signs. Rahu conjuncting with any planet tends to amplify the effects that planet may give. This couple of days period may bring about events that are unexpected, powerful and transformative.

Once Mars moves out of Virgo and into Libra, we have an interesting situation for the remainder of Mars' transit there, as Mars joins Saturn. They exactly conjoin August 25, 2014, after which Mars moves ahead of Saturn and then moves to Scorpio on September 4.

Libra is Venus' air sign, and Venus and Mars are not naturally friendly, therefore Mars in Libra is not his most favorable position. Added to that, Saturn and Mars can act somewhat at odds, with Mars exhibiting the strong, youthful, powerful show of energy and Saturn embodying restraint, limitation and obstruction. This can be frustrating for both Mars and Saturn. As some regular readers may remember, I call Mars and Saturn together the "driving with the brakes on" yoga.

This sense of wanting to impatiently blaze ahead while simultaneously being afraid to move may creep in as we move into late July and through August.

The lunar mansion that spans Virgo and Libra is called Chitra, which means "bright," as a beautiful gem may be. There is the implication of creating beautiful forms with Chitra and it is ruled by Mars itself. So while Mars is uncomfortable in the sign of Venus, he will still be within a lunar mansion that he rules. There is potential to use the fire and energy of Mars during this time to create new forms, carve new channels and put forth energy toward building something new. With the presence of Rahu also in Chitra and Saturn in Libra, the advice is to move carefully and with deliberation in order to keep the balance as we transition from one paradigm to the next.

Venus Transits Gemini July 13-August 6

Venus moves from its own sign of Taurus into Gemini on July 13, joining Mercury and for a couple of days, Sun. As Venus moves steadily closer to the Sun, we will begin to lose sight of Venus as the morning star come September.

Mercury, lord of Gemini, and Venus are natural friends. Venus is therefore well placed in Gemini, and further strengthened by Mercury's support in his own sign. This two week period when Venus and Mercury are both moving through Gemini could be a great time for communicating, travel, short trips, movement, creative writing, entertainment, socializing and enjoyment.

There will be no malefic planetary aspects to this combination except for from Rahu, newly positioned in Mercury's other sign of Virgo. The Rahu influence could be simply to make one want more fun than one can handle, which may affect the well being of the body. Listen to the inner Saturn voice telling you when to say "enough."

Sun Transits Cancer July 16-August 16

Just as Mercury and Venus are natural friends, so are Sun, Moon and Jupiter, whose energies will combine nicely as the Sun transits through the sign of Cancer from mid-July to mid-August. Cancer is ruled by the Moon and is currently occupied by Jupiter in exaltation.

With the Sun as the natural indicator of the soul and self, we each have, in a symbolic (or actual) way, the opportunity to submit our soul to the direct presence of divinity as the Sun and Jupiter meet during this time. The exact conjunction occurs on July 24 and the date range of combustion of Jupiter with Sun is July 9-August 8. Combustion of planets occurs when they line up with the Sun, whose rays are so strong as to drown out those of the planets. Still, Jupiter will be strong in exaltation, so we may feel this merging of Sun and Jupiter energies at this time. Could be a great time to receive inspiration for action that comes straight from the divine, which ultimately is no different from the individual conception of soul.

Saturn Resumes Direct Motion July 20

Like a large ship coming about, great Shani (Saturn) ends the retrograde cycle begun March 2, 2014 on July 20, slowly turning about and resuming direct motion through the final degrees of Libra, his sign of exaltation. Saturn will slowly finish the transit through Libra in the next 3.5 months, moving into Scorpio on November 2, 2014.

We have until November 2, then, to integrate the lessons that Shani has offered us through the recent Libra transit, which began on November 15, 2011. Almost a three year transit, half of which was colored by the presence of the north node of the Moon, Rahu.

In some domain of life, Saturn has offered us his lessons of humility, karmic responsibility, detachment, determination and fortitude. Learning these lessons often feels like a lonely chore that is without reward, but in the end, our journey into ego-negation leaves us stripped of extraneous matters so that we can perceive that which truly sustains us.

With Jupiter and Saturn both in exaltation during these final months of Saturn in Libra, and without Rahu throwing smoke and confusion onto the truth that Saturn dispassionately offers, we have an environment where we can gratefully accept and integrate the lessons that may have come through difficulty, struggle and sorrow in the past couple of years.

It is time to release trauma, allow healing to complete, filter the lessons through all parts of the being and prepare for future learning. Allow the experiences of difficulty to knit into a supportive structure (Saturn) that can serve as a foundation for the positive influx of grace and knowledge (Jupiter.)

New Moon in Cancer July 26

As mentioned above, Sun and Jupiter conjunct exactly on July 24, making this new Moon of July 26 particularly colored by Jupiter.

During the late afternoon of July 26, Sun and Moon join at 9º48' Cancer, in the lunar mansion of Pushya, which is ruled by Saturn. Jupiter will be nearby at 8º17' Cancer. Even though the Moon is considered at its ebb of power during new Moon, lost to sight in the blazing aura of the Sun, this appears to have the potential to be a very auspicious new Moon.

Moon is in its own sign, which gives strength despite being new. Cancer is further blessed by the presence of exalted Jupiter. Moon, Sun and Jupiter are all natural friends, so there is an element of harmony and projection of sattwa guna (purity.)

All of the planets are in their own signs, friendly signs or exalted signs, except Mars, who is in neutral territory. This gives each of the planets a state of comfort, ability to express and potential for harmonious action. This gives humans a similar benefit.

The 24 hour period before the new Moon, starting the afternoon of July 25, is known as amavasya and is better for quiet reflection and withdrawal from action. This is a time for inner calm that allows us to perceive the subtle messages that are being sent by the divine forces that guide and shape us. We begin to harness the growing energy of the Moon the next day as the Moon moves away from the Sun and regains its strength.

The last week of July may begin to grant us clarity and direction in situations that have seemed unstable or untenable for a long period of time.

Mercury Transits Cancer July 28-August 12

Having regained his speed through the month of July, Mercury dashes into Cancer on July 28, joining Sun and Jupiter, and moves quickly through to Leo on August 12.

The Moon, ruler of Cancer, has no enemies among the other planets, but the feeling is not mutual. Mercury (Budha), the illegetimate son of the Moon (Chandra), considers his biological father an enemy and is therefore not happy in the sign of Cancer. The Moon and Mercury are both the planets of the mind, the Moon ruling emotions, consciousness and sensitivity and Mercury rulling the informational mind that calculates and analyzes.

This quick two week transit by Mercury through Cancer may feel like a ruffle in our minds. Deeply inspired by the Moon-Sun-Jupiter conjunction on July 26, we may feel suddenly a couple of days later as if we have to rethink everything and quickly make plans and actions. This is a result of Mercury entering the scene and could be remedied by allowing the thought waves to pass through without clinging onto them. Allowing Mercury's active nature to take hold of our soul inspiration could cause things to move quickly, but may degrade the inner glow a bit. Use the quickness of Mercury sparingly but do not deny it completely during this time.

The gift of Mercury is the ability to see things from many directions; adding this flexibility of perception to that which is soul-inspired could be the best result of this transit. We may also be able to analyze our emotional reactions from a more objective seat as Mercury moves through Cancer.

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