Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

April 2019

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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New Moon in Revati/Pisces April 5

After the full moon in Virgo on the vernal equinox, March 20, the Moon begins to wane, passing through the gamut of planets that are currently occupying Scorpio, Sagittarius and Aquarius and finally coming to join the Sun in Pisces.

Sun and Moon will connect at 22° Pisces before sunrise on April 5, in the final nakshatra of the zodiac, Revati. Since both Pisces and more specifically Revati mark an ending, which also implies a beginning, we may find ourselves becoming inwardly still during the first few days of April as we collectively observe finalizations that point toward initiating new phases.

In March, the nodal axis that we name Rahu (north node of the Moon) and Ketu (south node of the Moon), shifted into new signs, Gemini and Sagittarius respectively, where they will wobble in anti-zodiacal motion for the next 1.5 years, until September, 2020. In the course of last month (March 2019), if there were unexpected or sudden shifts in certain departments of your life, this may point to a theme to be explored during this transit.

With that in mind, this new Moon of April 5 may be a good time to let go of that which has been completed or that which is no longer serving a relevant purpose as you gear up for ushering in a new phase. Adding further momentum to this is the Sun, who will cross through Revati and into Aries by mid-month.

The lord of Pisces, Jupiter, has moved into his own sign of Sagittarius for a brief spell starting March 29, giving some strength to Jupiter but with some conditions. Jupiter will be aspected by many difficult planetary energies; he joins Saturn and Ketu in Sagittarius and receives the aspect of Mars from Taurus and Rahu from Gemini.

After the new Moon, as the Moon waxes, the positive, helpful influence of Jupiter should aid in regaining our balance, assessing our resources and making plans for future growth. It may be difficult to maintain an attitude of positivity due to the "noise" coming from Rahu and Mars, who'd like things to move faster, and from Saturn and Ketu, who think we should stop everything and reconsider.

Jupiter Retrograde April 10 – August 11

Almost like a person who walks into a room and finds a compromising scene that makes them want to back out, Jupiter begins a retrograde cycle at 0°14' Sagittarius that will return him to the depths of Scorpio where he remains until November 4, 2019.

Jupiter pirouettes in the gandanta zone between Scorpio and Sagittarius, so perhaps best to make any decisions and improvements for positive growth before this retrograde cycle begins. This would be the March 29 – April 9 window, when Jupiter is in his own sign, able to generate some auspiciousness, despite the noise from the naysayers.

On April 22, retrograde Jupiter returns to Scorpio, where he actually is quite capable of expressing his power of positivity in a challenging environment. Even though Scorpio makes anyone work through discomfort, this will actually be a better place for Jupiter to remain through the summer, which will be marked by the retrograde Saturn and Ketu conjunction that will last from May – September.

In Scorpio, Jupiter will be free from the direct influence of Saturn, Ketu and Rahu, allowing him to work his goodness and shed the light where it needs to be. This also creates a parivartana, or exchange of signs, between Ketu and Jupiter. Jupiter is the lord of Sagittarius, where Ketu currently transits, and Ketu is the co-lord of Scorpio, where Jupiter will be transiting through November.

While the Saturn+Ketu conjunction seems especially daunting, as they are difficult influences associated with difficulty, obstacles, separation and loss, this exchange of signs between Jupiter and Ketu seems to be one of the keys that will transform any upcoming challenges into channels toward growth and liberation. Another way of looking at this would be to frame any situations that cause sorrow, worry, fear or illness (Saturn indications) into avenues for spiritual transformation and growth (Ketu and Jupiter.)

Mercury Enters Pisces April 11

Talking about Jupiter is talking about the big picture, the grand plan, the great highway. Mercury is the one who handles the details and connections that keep the supply trains running. Coming out of a retrograde cycle on March 28 which landed him back in Aquarius with his friend Venus, Mercury shakes his head and sashays forward.

On April 11, Mercury moves from Aquarius to Pisces, which is somewhat of a trade off. Mercury is generally happy in Aquarius, which is a sign ruled by planets friendly to him, Rahu and Saturn. The limitations of Saturn paired with the innovations of Rahu make Aquarius a unique environment, where we are faced with both creating and rejecting boundaries and borders. Throughout the remainder of this year, both of the lords of Aquarius will also be aspecting Aquarius; Rahu from Gemini and Saturn from Sagittarius, both will be projecting their energy there, turning up the volume for any planets passing through that territory.

While this may make Aquarius intense at the moment, Mercury tends to get bogged down in Pisces, which is Jupiter's expansive and universal world where the words and details that Mercury represents get lost in space.

Mercury moves through Pisces until May 3, but only a short while after his entrance there things improve quite a bit, as Venus joins Mercury on April 15. Venus is exalted in Pisces, which enhances the power of Venus to improve the debilitation of Mercury in Pisces. We get by with a little help from our friends.

However much help Mercury receives, this is a good month for analyzing the big picture. It may be difficult to get to the real details and engineering until Mercury goes to Aries in early May. Enjoy the inspirational energy of the vast cosmos as you row your little boat toward new horizons.

Sun Transits Aries April 14 – May 14

Seeing the energetic pair, Mercury and Venus, on a mission to launch into Pisces, Sun courageously moves through the end of one cycle and the beginning of another as he squeezes from Jupiter's water sign into Mars' fire sign, where he gains the state of exaltation for the month. Here comes the Sun King!

In the northern hemisphere, we very much feel the quickening of spring growth when the Sun gets extremely strong during its annual transit of Aries. This year, the Sun is not afflicted by any negative influences as it transits through Aries, which grants us clarity, courage and initiative to begin anew.

As the month wears on, the Sun in Aries could be a source of steadiness in an otherwise shifting environment. When the Sun gets into Mars' fire sign, he is also moving into an aspect from Jupiter, which is mixed because even though Jupiter is in his own sign of Sagittarius, he is retrograde and also retreating through the battlefield that lies between Scorpio and Sagittarius.

Further, the Saturn retrograde comes at month's end and Mercury and Venus leave Pisces to join Sun in May, along with Mars changing signs. The April half of the Sun in Aries could be a good time to truly align the course of action with the heart's desire and take stock of personal well-being, re-commiting to self-care routines as we may be facing some changing times ahead.

Venus Enters Pisces, April 15

Venus changes signs from Aquarius to Pisces on April 15, bringing the count of exalted planets up to two. As mentioned above, Mercury will also benefit from this addition of Venus to the Pisces environment. Venus and Mercury together are extremely energetic and lead by Venus' inspirational embrace of universal principles, Mercury works better to bring attention, clarity and energy into that bigger picture.

Venus transits Pisces through May 10, when it enters Aries to join Sun. This is a very sweet transit, ameliorating the condition of Mercury and perhaps even the morale of Jupiter, who is traversing some rough territory this spring. We can also enjoy the exaltation of the Sun and Venus, who when both exalted are in a temporal friendship that harmonizes their relationship. As the champion of the self (Sun) and the queen of the others (Venus) come into this state of understanding, it could reflect in getting clarity about relationships and taking action to rebalance the mixture of self and other if needed.

Full Moon in Chitra/Libra April 19

Just before dawn on April 19, the Moon reaches its peak fullness at 5° Libra, specifically Chitra nakshatra. This annual full Moon, when the Sun is exalted and the Moon is in Libra, is celebrated as the birth of the well-loved Hanuman, champion devotee of the great Lord Rama, the incorruptible king of legend.

With the strong Sun and bright Moon, again, we have the chance for seeing clearly, gathering our strength and setting forth in a new direction. This is a good planetary alignment that puts the Sun and Moon in harmonious relationship, as well as Mars and Venus, who reflect the more earthly masculine and feminine qualities.

Mars rules the sign of Aries, the sign which exalts the Sun, and will be occupying Taurus, Venus' sign. Venus also rules Libra, where the full Moon is placed and is well positioned, exalted, in Pisces. Chitra nakshatra sits inside of Libra, but is ruled by Mars, showing us a place in the zodiac where the fiery strength of Mars is channeled through the creative field of Venus. This is a spectacular moment for artistic inspiration and vital creation.

These factors are supportive and positive, especially the energy of Mercury and Venus in Pisces, seeking to honor the endings and propelling the Sun forward. There are also rumblings deeper in our substructures that point toward foundational shifts that may be difficult to predict or control.

Jupiter Returns to Scorpio April 22

Jupiter is zig-zagging through the difficult territory that bridges the signs Scorpio and Sagittarius. Watch and learn!

After crossing this zone in forward motion on March 29, Jupiter enters a retrograde cycle on April 10 and reverses back toward Scorpio, where he re-enters on April 22. Jupiter remains in Scorpio until November 4.

To repeat the message again: this position of Jupiter in Scorpio could turn out to be the saving grace in any upcoming situations of instability, better than if Jupiter were to join with the upcoming Saturn+Ketu conjunction from May – September.

Scorpio is co-lorded by Mars and Ketu and Sagittarius is lorded by Jupiter. With Jupiter in Ketu's sign and Ketu (exalted!) in Jupiter's sign, this creates an amazing parivartana (exchange of signs) that will be in effect through November 4. Suddenly, the very intense and intimidating conjunction of Saturn and Ketu, which could end up moving and shaking in ways we've not experienced to date, becomes an amazing opportunity for evolutionary growth and change.

We stand to level up and gain incredible knowledge from the experiences that lie ahead. Gather your strength, calm your mind, align with your heart. You are here to experience life in its dichotomy and its unity. This is it and you are that!

Saturn Retrograde in Sagittarius April 29 – September 18

On Monday, April 29, lord Saturn deliberately comes to a halt and reverses his apparent direction in the late portion of Jupiter's Sagittarius. Right at this spot, 27° Sagittarius, Saturn meets with the headless one, Ketu, the south node of the Moon, known as lord of obstacles, reversals and the upward direction.

Saturn will continue retrograde motion through September 18, where he regains forward motion at 20° Sagittarius. Since Ketu naturally moves in retrograde motion, this puts these two planets hand-in-hand for the next 4.5 months, May through mid-September. This is a notable transit that will likely be felt by all either directly or indirectly.

Retrograde effects are difficult to predict, but the principle of reversal is prominent. Ketu shows reversals and changing of course, wherever he is. Saturn in retrograde could give effects that are a reverse from what we expect; rather than slow, we could see fast and rather than pressure, we could feel buoyancy. At any rate, whatever the direction or amount of pressure, we may expect some choppy terrain that is somewhat uncomfortable to traverse, unless of course, you have a surfboard.

The surfboard is a metaphor for a vehicle that is designed to glide over the unpredictable waves of the ocean, making something that is uncomfortable into something that is thrilling. This vehicle/surfboard is our body and the idea is to create a body that is strong and buoyant because of health and the alignment of body, mind and heart.

If we expect a gamut of unexpected delays and an array of insurmountable objects in the upcoming months, we can prepare ourselves with added layers of patience and the positive expectation of becoming stronger and wiser as we navigate through the waters ahead. The exchange of signs between Jupiter and Ketu should be helpful, but the intention to activate that energy must come from within. Keep up the meditation, the studies and the donations to charitable causes to tap into that Jupiter/Ketu flow. Remember, this Saturn and Ketu extended conjunction in Sagittarius occurs specifically in the nakshatra Purvashada, ruled by Venus and by Apas, lord of the waters. Taking responsibility for our part in any pollution of the waters will be a big theme this summer.

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