Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

September 2018

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.

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Venus Transits Libra September 1 – January 1, 2019

Venus glides out of Virgo and into Libra on Saturday, September 1 for a four-month transit in her own sign. This transit is notable for the length, due to a retrograde cycle that will again propel Venus into a different relationship with the Sun, sending her back to the "morning star" position in early 2019. Most of 2018 saw Venus setting after the Sun, appearing as the "evening star."

This is an interesting period of time for Venus-related matters, as Venus will be in strength, occupying her own air sign, Libra. Venus is known as Shukra in Sanskrit, which translates as white, bright, clear, juice and so on. Shukra carries the message of pure creative spirit, and on a human level, that represents the physical act of union with another that gives rise to conception. Venus is crucial in every aspect of this communion that brings about creation, which is why we designate Venus as the chief of relationships, social interaction, creative efforts, attraction and communion.

Among the planets, Venus shares the designation of "guru" with Jupiter. They are the two gurus, with Jupiter as the transmitter of "natural laws" and Venus as the regent and instructor of "social laws." In other understanding, Shukra (Venus) is the preceptor of the asuras (the dark/left hand path) and Guru (Jupiter) is the preceptor of the suras (the light/right hand path.) Therefore, while not natural friends nor teachers of the same subjects, Jupiter and Venus carry the same mantle of teacher and we rely on each of them for inspiration and guidance as we navigate both the natural world and the social environment that it contains.

Jupiter has occupied Libra since September 11, 2017 and was joined by Venus briefly from November 3 – 26. Jupiter has recently resumed direct motion and is moving toward the end of the sign of Libra, exiting to Scorpio on October 11, 2018. We will discuss Jupiter's transit through Scorpio in the October forecast, but for now it is good to note that Jupiter will perhaps become more comfortable and able to concentrate on the "natural law" in Scorpio, a friendly sign for Jupiter.

Jupiter has been transiting through Virgo and Libra for the last two years, which are signs that are not the most supportive of Jupiter's efforts. It is like putting a teacher or priest to work in marketing, nursing or retail sales. They could do what needs to be done, but would feel that they are neither fulfilled by the work nor effective at completing it. As October nears, many could be feeling a call to re-focus efforts on deep studies or teachings, which will be supported during the next couple of years as Jupiter moves through Scorpio and Sagittarius.

Jupiter in Libra is also feeling the pressure of Saturn's occupation of Sagittarius (Jupiter's fire sign), so wherever Jupiter goes, he will feel a bit of a push to clear up un-truth or corruption until the root of the problems are addressed and cleaned.

When Venus enters Libra, the bright one will be in effect ushering Jupiter out of her sign and into the deep waters of Scorpio, which will give her space to clean up Libra and re-focus creative efforts. This could bring a bit more energy for social activity, creative projects, marketing and networking that may have been put on the back burner.

Venus stays in Libra for a long time this year due to a retrograde cycle as mentioned above. Venus assumes retrograde motion at 17° Libra on October 5, winds back to 2° Libra and resumes direct motion on November 16. From there, Venus moves steadily forward, exiting Libra on January 1, 2019.

Shukra teaches us how to be clean in our homes, vehicles, businesses, politics and relationships. This last four months of 2018 will be graced by this teaching of what to sweep away in order to create a clean, fertile environment for our creativity and relationships with one another.

Mercury Transits Leo September 2 – 18

Mercury has just emerged from the wave pool created by Rahu in Cancer after having spent a nice chunk of time there participating in the recent eclipse trio, a retrograde cycle and a long conversation across the drawing board with a very hot Mars.

Resilient and flexible Mercury will recover quickly as always, moving fast through Leo after his retrograde cycle, reaching his own sign of Virgo on September 18.

Mercury entered Cancer on June 25, just before Mars went into retrograde from June 26 – August 27. We are perhaps blessed that Mercury was across the table from Mars during this time, as the humor, skillfulness and flexibility of Mercury may have been the one thing that kept many afloat during this challenging summer.

Mercury in Leo during this first half of September could see many of us shaking the water off of our heads as we dry out and start putting our energy and mental efforts toward new projects that could be more focused on building or repairing and less on immediate triage.

Mercury joins the Sun in Leo and quickly catches up and overtakes the Sun just after the pair moves to Virgo in mid-September. We lose sight of Mercury when he gets close to the Sun, and we can think of Mercury's energy and effort becoming consumed and absorbed by the light of the Sun. As mentioned in August's forecast, we are counting on the Sun in Leo to bring some clarity and right actions in general; adding Mercury's enthusiasm and skills to this recipe could be quite positive, especially when Mercury gets even stronger in the sign of Virgo.

Saturn Resumes Direct Motion September 6

Saturn, currently placed in the sign of Sagittarius, will be completing a retrograde cycle on September 6 that was begun on April 17. Saturn began retrograde at 15° Sagittarius in the nakshatra of Purvashada and turns around again at 9° Sagittarius in the nakshatra of Mula.

Saturn's direct motion will be followed by a bit over a month of all the visible planets being in direct motion. After a rough couple of months that saw a slew of retrograde planets and eclipse action, we may feel a bit of relief when our planetary energies are all going in natural, forward motion again.

Retrograde planets in general tend to show a strong force that express intense desire for something. Saturn in general wants to expose the illusion that life offers permanence or security and further wants us to take responsibility for the actions we do while traveling on this karmic playground.

Saturn has a slow, deliberate style that can be managed a bit more easily when direct motion resumes. This direct slow motion continues until Saturn's next retrograde cycle, April 29 - September 17, 2019.

Saturn will continue to give some pressure or difficulty in the domain of life that Sagittarius represents in individual charts. The signs of Aquarius, Gemini and Virgo are also receiving the aspect of Saturn, which often creates situations that evoke anxiety, fear, exhaustion or even dread (even if they are great opportunities for growth.)

When we can address the difficulties that Saturn precipitates, we are truly and humbly facing the realities of life, which are varied and include both pleasant and challenging experiences.

New Moon in Leo/Purvaphalguni September 9

Early September sees the Moon waning until it joins the Sun at 23° Leo on Sunday, September 9. This new Moon occurs in the Sun's sign of Leo and in the nakshatra (lunar mansion) of Purvaphalguni. Purvaphalguni is ruled by the planet Venus and the meaning of the name can be translated literally as "already red," which we could further morph into the idea of ripe or ready.

Purvaphalguni is ruled by the deity Aryaman, who governs all contracts and unions between people. It brings together the male and female principles to support procreation. This is reflected by the nakshatra being ruled by the planet Venus while sitting in the larger environment of Leo, ruled by the Sun. While these planets are not technically "friends," they are both crucial in the creation of the life spark, which could literally be fertilization through copulation or could be symbolically the creative process that comes about by joining earthly materials with the spark of ideas.

Both the Sun and Venus, sign and nakshatra rulers of this new Moon, are both in strength, occupying their own signs of Leo and Libra respectively. After a very challenging few months of planetary transits, we may mark this moment as a turning point or new beginning when we can begin to create anew or establish a stronger, steadier balance between the feminine and masculine principles.

All visible planets will be in direct motion and far enough away from the nodes now that eclipse season has ended. With Venus beginning a retrograde period on October 5, we have just under a month to enjoy walking along with all of the planets in forward motion.

Sun Transits Virgo September 16 – October 16

The Sun leaves behind his own sign of Leo on September 16 for one month in Mercury's earth sign, Virgo. With Mercury traveling so close with the Sun as it moves to Virgo, we will not see the exchange of signs this year that we sometimes get when Sun is in Virgo with Mercury following behind in Leo. Actually, we will get two days of and exchange of signs between Sun and Mercury, September 16-17, so enjoy that!

The Sun going into Virgo will put him into range of Saturn's gaze, who aspects the 3rd, 7th and 10th signs from his position. This may bring forward the classic tension we feel when the Sun-Saturn theme comes up, which involves a bit of struggle to create a balanced, healthy ego.

With this set up, it is more likely for Saturn to oppress the Sun with the 10th aspect, as the Sun has not much ability to strike back by planetary aspect. This could lead to some situations designed to humble or restrain egos that are out of balance in the self-esteem sector.

Counting the factor of sign aspects, we do see more equal footing in the sense that all dual signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces) do aspect one another. In this sense, Virgo will be stronger as it will have two planets, one of which is its lord, Mercury. Sagittarius holds only Saturn, and Jupiter, lord of Sagittarius is occupying a difficult sign for Jupiter.

What this signals is that there may be a desire to bring healing or balance to self-esteem, individuality or self-image. The effective way of doing this is to find the willingness to let go of self-defined restrictions as an act of healing which leads to wholeness and integration.

Sun in Virgo also aspects the sign of Pisces by planetary aspect, which brings some warmth and light to matters of universality or spirituality. When Jupiter changes signs to Scorpio on October 11, he will add his beneficial aspect to his own sign of Scorpio as well, giving us a few days toward mid-October when we may step back and un-focus a bit to see the bigger picture of how things come and go in life.

Mercury Transits Virgo September 18 – October 6

Coming up quick into the brilliant shine of the Sun will be Mercury, following the Sun into his own earth sign, Virgo, on September 18. This will be a quick transit where we see Mercury move past the Sun to emerge on the other side, further forward in the zodiac.

Mercury is energetic, communicative, analytical and quick. His own sign of Virgo is known as the natural sign of health and disease, where we learn how what we eat makes us sick or well, where we harvest food, make medicines, and bring health and mobility to our physical forms.

We can use this brief transit to put a good burst of energy toward re-balancing our physical health and optimizing our homes, vehicles and technological tools. This is a good time for health therapies, cleanses and focusing on educational pursuits, communications projects or financial tasks.

The Sun's presence with Mercury does inflame energy upon oneself, so why not make it educational and healthy? Analyze what is working for you or not and make the adjustments necessary to create a new, robust balance that supports body, mind and soul.

Mars Conjoins Ketu September 20

We are still experiencing the joining of exalted Mars in Capricorn with Ketu, the Moon's south node. Mars and Ketu are the co-lords of the sign of Scorpio, and as such, carry the fiery intensity and depth of that sign as they conjoin for an extended period, from May 2 – November 5, 2018.

The first two months (May/June) led into a retrograde phase for Mars that ran from June 26 – August 27 and created quite a bit of hot weather across the globe, both literally and figuratively. We will see what the final two months of this intense transit will bring.

The first few weeks of September, we see Mars moving forward again toward Ketu. By mean node calculation, Mars will pass by Ketu at the autumnal equinox, September 20-21. Because of the retrograde phase in June and July, this will be the 3rd of three exact meetings of Mars and Ketu during the entire six-month transit. The other two occurred on June 13 (Mars Direct) and July 15 – 19 (Mars Retrograde.)

Once Mars clears the orb of Ketu, we may finally start to see the good results we'd expect from Mars transiting his sign of exaltation, Capricorn. Mars reaches the pinnacle of exaltation at 28° Capricorn, which occurs on November 1, just a few days before the long transit of Mars in Capricorn tumbles into Aquarius.

Mars in Capricorn can be harnessed to bolster our strength, determination and perseverance as we focus on goals. The only planet to receive Mars' direct planetary aspect during this remainder of time in Capricorn will be Rahu in Cancer. This serious and heroic Mars may put some focus on clearing the roads of obstructions that have come about during the chaotic eclipse season that was underpinned by a bunch of retrograde planets. Rahu tends to obfuscate, manipulate and masquerade; the strong, direct Mars can help us excavate the truth and destroy the false or corrupt as we plow forward.

Full Moon in Pisces/Uttarabhadra September 24

The Moon waxes starting the moment after the new Moon on September 9, getting to full status opposite the Sun at 8° Pisces on the evening of Monday, September 24.

Pisces is ruled by the planet Jupiter, who is currently in Venus' sign of Libra with Venus, the planet that exalts the Moon. This is some auspicious support which may feel as if the waters are finally flowing in the right direction again.

This region of Pisces is covered by the nakshatra Uttarabhadra, 26th out of 27 nakshatras, ruled by the planet Saturn and the deity known as Ahir Budhnya, the serpent who brings the rains. Again, we could experience a renewed flow of water through the rain and snow, which may feel relieving after the long, hot months of Mars and Ketu marching across the land. Let us hope that the rain is just enough and not too much!

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