Monthly Vedic Astrology Forecast

September 2020

by Kerry Shamblin

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


Venus Transits Cancer August 31 – September 27

As August becomes September, we are seeing a world filled with unrest, natural disasters and desire for stability and growth. The retrograde status of both Saturn (stability) and Jupiter (growth) in their own signs seems to be teasing us with the promise of both but lacking delivery of either.

Venus is the planet of social contracts, connections and relationships, in addition to bolstering our concern for refinement, art, grace, comfort and beauty. Having just moved through Gemini making an opposition with retrograde Jupiter, she steps into Cancer and shifts her attention to retrograde Saturn in Capricorn, which is opposite Cancer.

This will be a month of reckoning when it comes to relationships and responsibilities that come at the cost of extreme limitation of growth. Both Venus and Saturn have more concern for the collective well-being than for the assertion of individuality. The gift that Saturn can give Venus is that of knowledge and respect for boundaries, which can sometimes mean leaning in with a hard "no" at the expense of harmony.

Venus' gift to Saturn is compassion and love in the face of suffering. Venus in Cancer is strong in the sense that Venus rules the water element, which is quite favored by the Moon, whose sign of Cancer is watery. The main message here is to draw deeply into your source this month to tap into the compassion that the Earth and its creatures are sorely needing. This includes you.

As Venus transits Cancer, we will have Mercury transiting Virgo. These two planets are highly motivated to ensure that everything is running smoothly and that people are taken care of. This will be dynamic caretaking energy in the background of the many shifts that are coming up in September.

Full Moon in Aquarius/Shatabishak September 1

Late in the evening of September 1, the Moon waxes to its fullest strength at 17º Aquarius, opposite the Sun at 17° Leo. Aquarius is co-lorded by the planets Saturn and Rahu, while Shatabishak nakshatra, which sits entirely within Aquarius, is also ruled by Rahu. This comes at a moment when Rahu himself sits strongly in his sign of exaltation, aspecting the full Moon and preparing himself for a shift of signs.

With this strong Rahu influence, we may feel a sense of amplified anxiety and desire for change. While this tide could be ridden all the way to shore, it could also be riddled with cross-currents. Weigh decisions carefully at this time before jumping too quickly into situations that require a sense of risk.

Shatabishak nakshatra, with its unstable lord Rahu, is also the source of remedies and healing. Literally meaning "100 healers," this nakshatra is associated with the diversity of ways toward achieving health and balance, including the fusion of traditional methods with modern innovation.

At this full Moon, Rahu's influence on the Moon could pull us collectively and individually toward a radical healing event. The planetary events of early September, such as Venus and Mercury moving to new signs by the light of the silvery Moon, are setting the stage for the weightier shifts of later September, namely Jupiter and Saturn resuming direct motion in the midst of the nodal axis switching signs.

Mercury Transits Virgo September 1 – September 21

Gather your energy during the first part of September as the energetic Venus soaks up the healing waters in Cancer, and while the Moon sails through Shatabishak, Mercury moves further ahead of the Sun and into his own sign of Virgo for a quick few weeks.

One of the stellar parts of this first two weeks of September are the remarkable number of planets in their own or exalted signs. The Sun is in Leo (own sign) until mid-September, Mercury will be in Virgo (own sign+exalted), Jupiter is in Sagittarius (own sign) through November, Ketu-Rahu are exalted in Sagittarius-Gemini until September 22, Saturn is in Capricorn (own sign), and Mars is in Aries (own sign). Look for the moments when the Moon passes through Taurus and Cancer, which leaves only Venus placed in Cancer, not considered to be in great strength but also not detrimental.

September 8-10 - Moon in Taurus (exalted)
September 13-15 - Moon in Cancer (own sign)

The gift of Mercury in his own sign of Virgo is a burst of energy, ability to harvest, store, and prepare foods and medicines, and a practical approach to managing multiple events with efficiency and steady communication.

Mercury is here to find us the best ticket price and to help us pack and organize before the shift of the nodal axis, which could also reflect in a shift of our current paradigm.

Mars Retrograde in Aries-Pisces September 10 – November 14

Almost as if to defy the trend toward direct motion, self-directed Mars begins a retrograde cycle that will keep him in the vicinity of his own sign of Aries, as well as back into Jupiter's Pisces for a spell. The retrograde cycle itself begins September 10 in Aries and sees Mars station direct in Pisces on November 14. Here are further timeline details:

Mars Retrograde in Aries: September 10 – October 4
Mars Retrograde in Pisces: October 4 – November 14
Mars Direct in Pisces: November 14 – December 23
Mars Direct in Aries: December 23, 2020 – February 21, 2021

During this first chapter, with Mars retrograde in Aries from September 10 – October 4, Mars receives the aspect of Jupiter, which is positive, in that Jupiter has the power to influence Mars toward good expression of his firepower.

Retrograde motion added to a planet's natural indications can be difficult to predict, but we can apply principles like reversal, internalization and strong desires. With Mars in Aries, we would expect an assertive show of force and initiative; adding retrograde, we may see a drawing back, hesitation or surprising show of caution.

During this stint in Aries, Jupiter will continue to give a beneficial aspect to Mars, even as Jupiter stations direct on September 13. No other negative aspects hit Mars in Aries, but when Mars returns to Pisces, he will exchange the Jupiter aspect for Saturn, who can aspect Pisces from Capricorn. This may further put the brakes on what looks to be like a flawless plan from the perspective given in August when Mars entered Aries in direct motion on August 16.

Review Mars piece in August forecast.

Jupiter Direct in Sagittarius September 13

We are coming into a window of positive influence from September 13 – November 19 when Jupiter will be moving direct through the late degrees of his own sign of Sagittarius. This retrograde period moved Jupiter back into Sagittarius on June 29, but the retrograde status has made reaching Jupiter's fruits difficult.

Jupiter resumes direct motion at 24º Sagittarius. He will traverse the final six degrees of Sagittarius over the two month period between mid-September and mid-November. His first recent traverse of this section of the zodiac came between mid-February and late March 2020, which in retrospect marked a period of time when the whole wide world came to a halt under the discovery of the most notable pandemic in 100 years. That was the time to act quickly, clearly and decisively, which some took advantage of and others did not.

This second chance comes under different circumstances, as during this first week of the two month window of Jupiter direct in Sagittarius, the nodal axis begins to shift signs, which implies that Sagittarius will be free of obstructive energy for the first time since late October 2017, when Saturn moved to Sagittarius. This weight was compounded by Ketu's entrance into Sagittarius in March 2019.

This is the first big shift that marks the second half of September 2020. Jupiter is considered to be a positive, auspicious force for good, a champion of knowledge and the upholder of wisdom. Jupiter will be lending his buoyancy to all of the fire signs during this time: Sagittarius, Aries and Leo. This supports righteous action, beginning new ventures, educational pursuits and leadership aspirations.

Sun Transits Virgo September 16 – October 16

Jupiter will maintain the fire after the Sun leaves Leo and moves into the earthy sign of Virgo from September 16 – October 16. The Sun moves through Virgo roughly at this date range each year, which coincides with the end of summer at the autumnal equinox, this year on Tuesday, September 22.

The dual nature of Mercury comes through in both of his signs, Gemini and Virgo. We are concluding a 1.5 year transit of Rahu in exaltation in Gemini, which could have felt like a bit of overload on the "instability pushing the need to pivot" front. Rahu will be moving into more stable ground in Taurus shortly after the Sun joins Mercury in Virgo.

Because of Mercury's nature and the earth element, Virgo gives a grounded approach to multitasking, allowing us to do activities that require movement, planning and communications. This is a good period of time for self-reflection and self-analysis which leads into making practical changes that support physical, mental and spiritual health.

Sun in Virgo is particularly supportive of designing and beginning new educational or health regimes. The Sun helps to remind enthusiastic Mercury that we need to consider preferences strongly when attempting to change routines and habits in a way that will stick.

New Moon in Virgo/Uttarphalguni September 17

Just after the Sun crosses the border into Virgo, the Moon slips into his loving arms and out of our sight for a short spell as we experience the new Moon at 1° Virgo, before dawn on Thursday, September 17.

It is taught in jyotisha (Vedic astrology) that a planet placed at the juncture between signs suffers instability and lack of strength or definition. This meeting of the Sun and Moon occurs at one of these junctures, reflecting the uncertainty of our present time. We may be feeling nearly desperate for answers, change and clarity while at the same time drained of the physical and mental energy it would take to move forward.

Uttaraphalguni nakshatra stretches between the last few degrees of Leo and up to 10° Virgo, is ruled by the Sun and by the ancient deity Aryaman, who is known as the ideal companion and provider. The name of this lunar mansion points to the very ripe fruits. This juncture between the natural 5th and 6th signs also points toward knowing when the moment comes to move from the natural waiting period as things ripen toward harvesting, cooking, preserving and taking the benefits of the fruits. This can be taken literally, as in food, or figuratively, as in any creative effort.

Any new Moon can make for low energy, as the Moon rules the fluids in our bodies, which is mostly what we are. It's like an energy low tide, pregnant with expectancy that what is empty will again be filled. This is a good time to pause, rest, reflect and acknowledge the places in our bodies, minds and lives that are vulnerable and depleted.

Rahu – Ketu Axis Changes Signs

The second notable shift of late September comes with the nodal axis changing signs. The north node, Rahu and the south node, Ketu, are always exactly opposite in the zodiac, spend about 1.5 years in each sign and move in the opposite direction from the rest of the physical planets.

Since March 2018, Rahu has occupied his sign of exaltation, Gemini, while Ketu moved his way in reverse through his sign of exaltation, Sagittarius. Exaltation status enables a planet to function at its highest level, which means the nodes, who are generally known for disruption, amplification, chaos, instability, obstruction and unexpected events, can really stir the pot when they get to these signs. By now, just about everyone is ready to take that pot off the stove and let it cool.

The nodal axis moves in reverse through the zodiac, and it also has a wobble to it that causes the axis to move in direct motion occasionally. We measure the position of the nodes by their true placement and also by a mean placement, which is an average that smooths out the wobble. For this reason, we see their change of signs more as a span of time than a moment. The true node changes signs Sept 18 and the mean node changes September 22, so we can see this span of days as the "shift." Rahu will land in Taurus and Ketu in Scorpio until March 2022.

Rahu is very strong in Taurus, having a natural affinity with all things Venus, such as her signs, Taurus and Libra. Ketu is equally strong in Scorpio, a sign which he co-lords with Mars. While the nodes remain vivid and strong in these signs, they are at least more stable in nature, which could reflect in a collective sense of slowing down the merry-go-round.

We will explore this new station of the nodal axis each month as the world turns and the planets continue their circumambulation of the Sun. Obviously the two signs that are occupied by these shadow planets will feel the effects. There are disagreements about how the nodes aspect; from this viewpoint, we charge Rahu with aspecting the trines from himself (signs of the same element), as well as the opposite sign (like all of the other planets) and the second sign from him (the sign that he just transited.) For Ketu, we consider no aspects. Ketu is headless (no eyes, ears, nose, etc) and the jyotisha perspective of aspect is called "drishti" which implies glancing or gazing.

Rahu will be an obvious force in Taurus, as well as making his presence felt in Gemini, Virgo, Scorpio, and Capricorn. The first set of eclipses in the new location will come at us in November-December 2020. This will be a powerful 1.5 year period for the sign of Taurus and a transformative period for the sign of Scorpio.

Mercury Transits Libra September 22 – November 27

As the excitement mounts, Mercury slips from his own sign of Virgo and into Venus' air sign, Libra on September 22, earlier noted as the day of the autumnal equinox. When Mercury zooms out of Virgo, he jumps into Libra for a full two months, due to an upcoming retrograde cycle from October 14 – November 3.

By this time, the Moon is waxing, pushing past Ketu just as he moves his way into Scorpio, then passing by Jupiter and then Saturn. Energy should be building and Mercury's momentum should be increasing as it normally does just before entering retrograde phases.

Mercury is our herald, our communicator, our manager and market analyst. He helps with learning, writing, speaking, and transactions. His best friend is Venus and he loves visiting Libra as he can get a LOT done as far as making social connections, networking, helping with creative projects and making healing potions.

Mercury's other best friend is Saturn, who will be keeping an eye on Mercury the entire time he is in Libra, as Saturn can aspect Libra from Capricorn, where he transits until January 2023. This is a nice balance of energy, as Saturn's pressure tends to slow things down and remind us of practical limitations that may slightly curb and refine Mercury's enthusiasm in a good way.

Saturn Resumes Direct Motion in Capricorn September 29

The third major event of late September comes when the great Saturn resumes direct motion on September 29 at 2º° Capricorn, his own sign. This will give us a better chance to use Saturn's steady, plodding determination to slog our way up whatever hill we choose to climb in the next few months.

Saturn will continue to put his pressure on in the signs of Pisces, Cancer and Libra through his aspects, as well as keeping things on the straight and narrow in Capricorn. Saturn is slow and steady, so rather than fighting that, plan and prepare for things to move at a reduced pace, but at least in a forward direction. Saturn builds to last.

For all of October and up to mid-November, when Jupiter exits Sagittarius for Capricorn, we will have both Saturn and Jupiter in forward motion in their own signs, relatively free of the chaos brought by proximity to the nodal axis, Rahu and Ketu. See this as an opportunity to lay solid foundations, even though the project may have morphed immensely in the past four months.

In addition, the planets are nicely spaced apart at this time. While some pushing matches do occur through aspects, there won't be too much crowding, which could allow us to step back, gather perspective and decide how to build with the materials we find at our feet.

October 2020 Preview

  • Full Moon in Pisces/Uttarabhadra October 1
  • Retrograde Mars retreats to Pisces October 4
  • Venus-Moon Conjunction October 14
  • Mercury Retrograde in Libra October 14 – November 3
  • New Moon in Virgo/Chitra October 16
  • Sun in Libra October 16 – November 15
  • Venus Enters Virgo October 239
  • Full Moon in Aries/Bharani Halloween 2020!

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