Oh My Stars

Oh My Stars

Your Lunar Eclipse Forecast, October 2013: When The Bugs Come In

posted by Matthew Currie

beliefnet lunar eclipse forecast astrology matthew currieA Full Moon is prime time to bring out The Crazy in people, and this week’s Full Moon is also a Lunar Eclipse: an extra-special Full Moon with an bonus scoop of neurosis. In many parts of the world, this is the time of year when the weather gets colder, and bugs that would normally stay outside come sneaking into the house looking for a warmer place to hang out.

One of the greatest sages of modern times — an exterminator who was in my home a couple of weeks ago — recounted his experiences with people who have become bug-o-phobes. He noted how easy it is for some people who have lived through an infestation (or those who simply worry about these things) can suddenly be filled with panic every time they get a simple itch. It even happened to him once. There are two ways to react to this: either make yourself nuts and spend money you don’t need to spend on an exterminator… or face the simple mathematical truth that no, your home probably isn’t crawling with West Nigerian Jumping Scabies, or whatever it is you fear most.

For many of you, this Lunar Eclipse will see an outbreak of West Nigerian Jumping Scabies Paranoia of epic proportions.

A Lunar Eclipse is also a Full Moon. You don’t need to be an astrologer to have heard about what a Full Moon does: it sets the nerves on edge and makes the potential for werewolf attacks … figuratively speaking of course… much greater. A Lunar Eclipse makes a Full Moon’s effects more powerful, and leaves an impression on the birth chart that can be triggered weeks or months later. If you know the details of your birth chart, find the Houses where 26 degrees Aries and Libra fall, and you can expect things to come a bit unglued in those areas of your life.

This Eclipse has particular bite to it, thanks to Mars entering Virgo. Mars is where and how we invest our drives, and in a Mercury-ruled Sign like Virgo, that focus often falls upon intellectual pursuits… or perhaps upon worries that exist primarily in the mind. The experts will tell you it’s a good time to do house-cleaning, organizing, and all of the cleanly logical maintenance that needs to be done occasionally. That’s generally true, but this Mars comes with a special warning in the next week or so: you may be imagining Dust Bunnies that aren’t really there. Mars is now opposite Neptune, and your judgement as to where the real issues are can be clouded. The slow grinding of the Uranus-Pluto square is crawling towards being exact once more, and that in and of itself is enough to make a person sweat bullets over imagined fears based on otherwise real issues.

If you don’t believe me, go ahead and cruise through your Facebook friends comments about the current US Government shutdown. How many of them are yelling about national parks and monuments being closed, but show no signs of concern that food inspection and weather services and airline safety personnel aren’t on the job?

Of course, maybe I’m just worried about the wrong things too. Go ahead, have another cheeseburger while you wait for your flight to board. I’m sure it’ll be safe.

This forecast applies to everyone in general, but will have specific effects based on when you were born:

If You Were Born:

In the first week of the Earth or Water Signs: The urge to get things done will face particular frustrations. Avoid the urge to apply too much force to the situation.
In the last week of the Fire or Air Signs: The people around you don’t really mean to be jerks, and neither do you. Forgive, forget, and put down that machete.
March-August 1955: Prepare to have some illusions stripped away. The limitations that are revealed may bother you, but they can be addressed.
January-March 1961: Frustrations with finances and your general sense of order come to a head. Be careful where and how you invest you cash and your emotions.
October-November 1981: A major change in how you view your place in the world is called for, and may get dropped in your lap.
October-December 1982: The things you take most seriously in life are going to be challenged. Be brave, and this too shall pass.
December 1996-January 1997: You know that idea that “you create your own reality”? Well, this month someone else’s reality will be invading your mental space.


If you are Miley Cyrus, or born late November 1992:

This Eclipse is closely square your Mars in late Cancer. Be careful who you lash out at, where you lash out at, and where and how you invest your sexuality. More on Miley and Sinead O’Connor’s astrology HERE and HERE.

If you are Kanye West:

The Eclipse happens close to Kim Kardashian’s Sun. Expect her ego demands to go through the roof in the next year… perhaps even eclipsing yours, if you can imagine such a thing. Maybe that will be a reaction to her Mom’s divorce. More on the astrology of Kanye West HERE.


Astrology Of Love And Compatibility: Leo

posted by Matthew Currie

beliefnet astrology matthew currie leo(This is a part of the “Astrology Of Love And Compatibility” series)

AKA: The Lion, King Of The Jungle, Mr. Entertainment After Five Drinks At The Office Christmas Party

Ruling Planet: The Sun, which shines all day long and doesn’t care that it’s causing you heat stroke because it’s doing its thing, baby!

Identifying Features: Fun-loving, playful, and generally loveable in a child-like way. Also: child-like in an incredibly annoying way sometimes.

How Many Leos Does It Take To Change A Lightbulb? Just one. Leo is on that job ASAP because Leo needs good lighting. Also may require a publicist to take pictures of just how awesomely they changed that lightbulb.

Reputation:  Leos get accused of being overly-dramatic. It’s not their fault though that life is inherently dramatic, or that they are so good at creating their own drama when the script life provides them with gets a little dull.

The Truth: Leos are generally entertaining and a source of (usually intentional) amusement for everyone around them. Like the Sun which rules their Sign, when they shine, there’s no ignoring it. If there were only Leos in the world, nothing might get done, but everyone would have fun not doing it. They may not actually be obsessed with their hair, but tell one he or she is having a “bad hair day” and you might ruin their entire week.

How To Get A Leo’s Attention:  Think of yourself as the accessory that pulls their entire look together, figuratively speaking. Be shiny and unique and complement how they view life… and don’t skimp on the compliments, while you’re at it. “Flattery will get you everywhere” –Mae West, a Leo.

What’s To Love? There’s absolutely no doubt about when a Leo loves you: they broadcast it and light up your life. They’re usually pretty loyal and thoughtful mates, and understand that “entertainment value,” in whatever form it takes, really is valuable.

What’s Not To Love? When a Leo mopes (probably because of a bruised Ego, whether said bruising was deliberate or not), they can suck the life out of a room the way a black hole sucks in planets that get too close to it: permanently, and without even trying.

What Leo need to let those who love them know: You take things very, very seriously… especially matters of the heart. It may not always look like that, but that’s only because being a little goofy about things can sometimes be a great defense mechanism… and Love like yours is something that should be defended. 

What you need to know if you love a Leo: These people are really sincere about what they’re feeling. They’re terrible when upset, but that will pass. No matter how twisty an adult mind can be, at heart they are still pretty child-like… and that’s usually a good thing. Be kind and accepting and the rest will likely take care of itself.

Fire Signs: (Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius) This is the ideal relationship, provided you live in a world where someone else takes care of all the details and cleaning up afterwards. Otherwise, literally or figuratively, it could be a big loud mess.

Earth Signs: (Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn) Normally Leo comes across as a little untamed by Earth Sign standards, but if you can find stable common ground where you can work things out, results can be excellent.

Air Signs: (Gemini, Libra and Aquarius) Generally you’ll get along pretty well, provided you are able to manage to arrange for a more solid and practical base and set of ground rules than either of you might naturally provide for yourselves.

Water Signs (Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces) You’re both highly emotional and sensitive creatures in your own separate ways, and provided you don’t blow up at each other too often because of it, this could work out wonderfully.


Astrology: Aspects Explained, Via Star Wars

posted by Matthew Currie

Beliefnet astrology aspects matthew currie star warsWho you are and what you’re like as a person all comes from the planetary placements in your birth chart. It isn’t just your Sun Sign: it’s your Moon and Mercury and Venus and Mars and so on. Each planet represents a different function of your personality, and the Sign placement puts a certain spin on them. For example, someone with Sun in Aries may be “bold,” but if that Aries has their Moon (which represents your basic emotional temperament) in Pisces, you have an Aries with a degree of softness and sensitivity you don’t normally see listed under the Sun Sign descriptions of “Aries.”

At least as important as the Sign placements are to how your planets work are the aspects between them. When planets are a certain number of degrees apart (give or take a few), they are said to “form an aspect.” The aspect colors the nature of the interaction between the two planets and affects how each planet involved functions. For example: Mercury rules how your mind works and how you communicate, and Mars rules your drives and temper. So if one sees a Mercury-Mars aspect in a birth chart, it will have something to say about how well that person thinks under pressure (or how likely they are to say something cutting when annoyed), depending on the type of aspect.

An aspect describes the relationship between two planets. And just like relationships between people, those can be both straightforward and complex all on the same day. I think I’ve found a metaphor that conveys this: my own long and complex relationship with one of the cornerstones of modern Western Civilization: the Stars Wars films.


Conjunctions: A New Hope

A conjunction is when two planets are less than ten degrees apart (the entire Zodiac being 360 degrees around). It represents a fusion of two different planetary energies for better and/or worse, and is (arguably) the most powerful of all astrological aspects. No matter what two planets are involved, a conjunction always makes itself felt somehow.

I was eleven years old when I sat in a dark theater waiting for the movie to begin. I had heard a few things, but had missed out on the big promotional push. But big-budget science fiction adventures were few and far between, so I sat and I waited. And the lights went down. And then a giant spaceship flew over the top of the screen and it was being shot at by a monster sized spaceship and then there was a terrible villain and robots and adventure and lightsabers and heroes and rebels and a Wookiee rescuing a Princess and pew pew pew and a space station the size of a moon and spaceships shooting at each other and pew pew pew and Use The Force Luke and holy cow!!
It was like finding religion, and it messed with my head in ways I still feel today.

Oppositions: The Empire Strikes Back

When two planets are about 180 degrees apart — on opposite sides of the sky from each other — they form an opposition. The opposition has a lot of the drama of a conjunction, but the two planets pull on each other rather than joining forces. They can make trouble, but like a pair of oxen tied together, when they work in tandem they can get amazing results.

I had to wait for what seemed like a lifetime for the next movie when it came out. There was no Death Star explosion in it, and in a lot of ways it was darker and perhaps less “fun” than the first film. But there was wisdom, and growth, and there was Yoda. We saw that actions (even those taken for the right reasons) can have bad consequences, and that being a real Hero sometimes means pain and sacrifice… but that sort of thing only makes Heroes more valuable.
It was both moving and deeply satisfying in a way a simple adventure story alone couldn’t be.

Trines: Return Of The Jedi

Trines are a separation of about 120 degrees, connecting two planets in Signs of the same element (Fire, Earth, Air, or Water). They make for a harmonious and happy connection, but without more effort they can seem a bit lazy. Trines are a bit like a meal with great taste but that somehow still manage to leave you hungry for something a bit different an hour after you’ve eaten it.

We went to the theater knowing there would be big screen adventure and the thrilling conclusion to a story that had dominated our imaginations for years. There were new wonders and new effects and new music. And yeah… the Ewoks were a bit on the dopey side and the pace was slightly off, but the conclusion worked and we all walked away sad that the story had ended, but knowing it had been a great ride.
Besides, despite any flaws, it was Star Wars, and Star Wars is awesome, right?

Squares: The Phantom Menace
Two planets that are 90 degrees apart in a birth chart form a “square.” They are at cross-purposes to each other. They boost and energize each other, but provide no mutual support. They aggravate and annoy each other, but in a compelling way. They aren’t stable or pretty, but they are an excellent source of drive and energy: if life was all trines, nothing would ever get done.

We had waited for years for the next Star Wars movie, and we were promised MORE adventure and BIGGER special effects and LOUDER pew pew pew than ever! The budget was HUGE! The cast was STELLAR! Everything about it ended with an exclamation point! But the dialogue sucked and it was at least 30 minutes too long and and even the good actors in it were wooden beyond words and Jar-Jar Binks was just plain stupid and annoying!  
We were so let down and frustrated, we had to go see it again several times just to make sure we weren’t missing something.

Quincunxes: Attack Of The Clones

A quincunx (also called “the inconjunct”) is when two planets are about 150 degrees apart. They connect two planets in two Signs that have absolutely nothing in common with each other. Like a meal of something you can’t pronounce in a foreign restaurant, it may have its delights even if you can’t figure out exactly what it is. Astrologers traditionally group aspects into either “good” or “bad” and “major” or “minor” types, but the quicunx is inherently a head-scratcher that way. It has its charms, but it’s hard to figure out exactly what to do with the energies it produces.

Okay, so George Lucas actually took some outside advice this time, and the acting and dialogue were stiff (but not as bad), the action sequences seemed somewhat less pointless, and Yoda in a lightsaber duel was fun… as long as you ignored the fact that Yoda used to say things like “Wars do not make one great.” It didn’t exactly restore one’s faith in Star Wars entirely, but at least it wasn’t as horrible as “The Phantom Menace.”
Maybe that lack of compelling delights or flaws is why I only bothered to see it in the theater twice.

Sextiles: Revenge Of The Sith

A 60 degree separation between two planets is called a “sextile.” It’s sort of like a Trine Lite: it makes for harmonious blending of the energies of two planets without the obvious chemistry of a trine, but without the agitation caused by a square. Trines can be lazy, but a sextile can go completely un-noticed if you aren’t paying attention. It’s a bit like trying the World’s Best Pizza for the second time only to discover that this time around it has fewer toppings. It’s still pizza, and that’s not a bad thing at all.

There was a deliberate attempt in the look and style to make callbacks to the Original Trilogy… sometimes it worked, and sometimes it just reminded us of what we were missing. The dialog and acting was still stiff… but we realized that they had always had been that way (even in the better films of the series), and that sometimes that’s okay… or at least you can get away with it if the rest of the package is compelling. Mostly though, it was a pleasant relief from the last two films. And we finally got to see Darth Vader, even if it took half of forever for that damned whiny teenager to hurry up and die so it could happen.

Mostly we were just glad it was no “Phantom Menace,” and we still had our nostalgia for better times to fall back on.


These basic descriptions of how aspects in an individual birth chart work also apply to aspects between planets in your birth chart and planets in someone else’s chart, which is where “compatibility” comes in. For more on that, check out my ongoing series, “The Astrology Of Love And Compatibility.”

Astrology Of Love And Compatibility: Cancer

posted by Matthew Currie

(This is a part of the “Astrology Of Love And Compatibility” series)

AKA: The Crab, Moon Child, That Schoolmarm Who Loves Kids But Is Always Cranky With Them

Ruling Planet: The Moon, which stays up all night orbiting The Earth, waxing and waning and worrying about things beyond its control.

Identifying Features: Frequently cheerful, creative and charming — or crusty and snappish (sometimes both in rapid succession), which cleverly masks a deep-seated concern about nearly everything in its environment.

How Many Cancers Does It Take To Change A Lightbulb? Why do you assume the lightbulb needs changing? Are you trying to tell the lightbulb how it should feel about itself? Did it ever occur to you that maybe the lightbulb doesn’t feel like working?

Reputation: Sometimes moody and irritable, but not afraid to fight to the death to protect the people and things that it loves… which it loves very, very deeply.

The Truth: Ultimately, Cancers are like crabs themselves: once you get past that armor they are filled with sweet, tender, delicious goodness. And if YOU were surrounded by people who knew that about you and wanted to eat it all up, you’d grow a hard shell and get a bit defensive yourself.

How To Get A Cancer’s Attention: Recognize their goodness and approach them firmly and confidently… but don’t make any sudden moves, be startling, or poke at their defenses. Cancers like soft and fuzzy things, so try to emphasize those qualities in yourself.

What’s To Love? Long before there were Rams and Goats and Fish and even Scorpions, Crabs scuttled successfully around the Earth. That’s because they are one of Nature’s toughest designs… and when they love you, they will pinch and claw to the death to defend you and protect you.

What’s Not To Love? One good spooking is all it takes for them to scuttle away and back into the ocean of their feelings, never to be seen again. Also, what you may consider to be “over-reacting” to a perceived slight is what they consider “standard operating procedure.” 

What Cancer need to let those who love them know: You’ve got a tremendous amount of love to give and can be fiercely loyal. That sort of prize comes with a price, and that price is “toeing the line and making a conscientious effort to not be a jerk, or appear to be one, or to in any way bear a resemblance to one.” Mess up once and Cancer remembers it for ages.

What you need to know if you love a Cancer: If Spider-Man proved that “with great power comes great responsibility,” then consider having a Cancer in your life as giving you some super-powers. If they love you, you’ll get the full benefit of their near-bulletproof shell, fierce ability to pinch an enemy, and near-indestructability.

Fire Signs: (Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius)  Cancer can certainly benefit from the optimism and good cheer that comes from Fire Signs, but will have to overcome its fear of being boiled alive by them.
Earth Signs: (Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn)  The sense of stability Earth Signs provide to Cancer are highly appealing, but the relationship can become muddled without sufficient motivation.
Air Signs: (Gemini, Libra and Aquarius) Like Cancers, Air Signs are usually bright, and Cancers like that. But living in your head too much sets off the Crab’s warning systems… “what if you just THINK you love them?” they’ll wonder…

Water Signs (Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces) Your depth of feeling is exactly the sort of thing a Cancer is looking for, but can easily break down in the face of too much defensiveness, or if suspicions set in on either side.


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