Neil Giles is a storyteller, astrologer and historian. He is a novelist and journalist and has written for theatre, radio and television, as well as many articles for Astrology on the Web.
His passion for mythology and the ancient traditions has led him on a journey through Astrology, Tarot, the Runes and the Celtic Ogham Script as a seeker and personal reader.
He is the author of a number of works on Celtic and Teutonic spirituality, including Odin's Runes and The Oracle of the Trees.
For Neil, the storyteller's path reminds us that while the wisdom of the past still lives, we can take wise action now and in the future. Always a traveller, Neil is currently sojourning on the north coast of New South Wales.
The coming year is a big one for the Virgin, not only in what it brings immediately, but also in what it heralds for the years to follow. The shift is threefold. Revolutionary Uranus is the first to make a move. In the month of March, his radical influence will begin to be felt in your solar seventh house of partners and close associates. This will diminish in mid September, then intensify once more as 2003 comes to a close. Strong changes are to come in relationships and with the means and manner in which you relate. These changes will continue to grow over the coming years.
The next cab off the rank is Saturn, the measurer of effort. The month of June sees him sail into Cancer and your solar eleventh house of friends, hopes and wishes. Your aspirations will become more achievable though it will only be the more realistic dreams that come true. You may have to add a few hopes to the discard pile. Friends, associates and strong family links could play a big part in your life and you may find yourself working closely with a small or dedicated group.
However, if you strengthen ties in one area of your life, then you may have to accept an increasing distance or even separation in another. Some of you may find yourselves working side by side with older or authoritative people. Teamwork is the key to success, but you will have to deal with any resistance you have to the group situation. Some of you may choose to devote yourselves to service in the wider community, a choice not uncommon for people of your sign.
Finally, giant Jupiter, monarch of the Heavens, favours the Virgin with his majestic transit from August 27th and the twelve months that follow. There will be study, travel, advancement, opportunity and changes of ideas, attitudes and opinion. For many of you, it will be onward and upward. As long as you don't fall victim to extremes of hopefulness or idealism, you can flourish in your chosen sphere or successfully seek change and new directions. Seek the teachings you need. Teach you what know to others.
As the Sun and Chiron the wounded healer begin the year in Capricorn and your solar fifth house, 2003 is a time to really begin steering your own ship. Take charge and live the life you want to live. You will need to address any issues you have about play, leisure, pleasure, creativity and children in order to get the most from your life. If you have blocks about not being able to enjoy yourself, work to remove them.
Venus the goddess begins the year in brooding Scorpio, conjoining with warrior Mars and gathering a little tension from both revolutionary Uranus and giant Jupiter. This will be a busy year, with the workload being intense and demanding for some. You could find yourselves in the middle of a whirl of activity. This could bring excitement and interest, but you may also find that conflicts or clashes of opinion or idea will need to be dealt with in the midst of all this. This is not the year for you virgins to be shrinking violets. Some of your will find yourselves involved with powerful or intense activities and communications. However, this is also a year to be careful about where your loyalties lie. Don't let a rash moment create a betrayal.
For some of you in a partnership, you may find yourselves working closely with your nearest and dearest, bringing new daily routines and an unusual sharing of interests. You may have common spiritual ideas or interests that draw you down this path. However, if you differ in attitude or approach during this phase, make sure you discuss the differences and attempt to resolve them. Others in a partnership may find yourselves out in the world, away from your nearest and dearest, involved in a maelstrom of activity. This will have its excitement, but will also have its temptations and chance encounters, especially with co-workers with whom you may be thrown together. Keep your sense of ethics intact.
The single Virgo might find they are drawn to an associate or a connection in the humdrum of daily activity. The attraction may be intense and compelling. In the end, this connection may shake up the pattern of daily life or bring about profound inner changes. Watch that it's not short-lived though. It may be easy to misread what's going on. This year could be life in the fast lane for some. For some, either single or married, you might find yourselves ready to launch yourselves into a quest or a journey to some other part of the inner or outer globe, looking to find yourselves in a new and different way. If the distant light calls, then go. But, be prepared to make the necessary sacrifice.
Revolutionary Uranus moves into Pisces and your solar seventh house of partners and close associates from March 10th until September 15th. For the early born Virgo, this could bring a period of change or disruption with regard to partnership status. The single Virgo might find they are suddenly in the midst of a new romantic or close personal association, one that will impact strongly. Those in an established partnership might find they are in the midst of changed circumstances, with sudden or dramatic events being the trigger for changes. Partners may undergo change or decide to go in a different direction, testing the bond between you. Partners may also come to a new or different status, causing you to re-evaluate your situation together. Some may be looking at a sudden break in their relationship. For some this could become permanent. Others may find a break or change can revolutionize their life together, ushering in a new and different era. One thing is for certain! Revolutionary Uranus will ensure that radical change will come into your personal lives over the next years, affecting you and those with whom you're closely involved.
Just one word of warning, the period from July 29th to September 27th will require caution with partnership matters. Here, warrior Mars turns retrograde in Pisces and your solar seventh house, creating tension and perhaps conflict with close associates. Work to resolve conflicts that arise. Apply different methods or find new ways of cooperating with others. Partners may be difficult or be subject to circumstances beyond their control. The fallout from accidents or illness could affect the lives of some. Be careful of momentary attractions to strangers or encounters with people from the past. They may not deliver what they promise. If you negotiate this period with care, you can learn a great deal about yourself and those you love.
In regard to the money stakes, this is a year when the risk or gamble might pay off or the joint venture will serve your ends. While the Virgo generally likes to salt a little away, it could be better to risk what you have for the sake of something better rather than getting stuck. Some of you may benefit unexpectedly through the generosity of others or through simple good fortune. Others may find that changes in the working situation will affect the finances. If this happens, you might have to change ships in the midstream. Some of you may even decide to reduce your circumstances to do something more important in life.
Home and Family
Firstly, Pluto the transformer is still moving through Sagittarius and your solar fourth house of home, family and emotion, so the cycle of powerful or significant change in these areas will continue. Those born from September 12th to 15th will be most strongly affected in 2003. There could be endings and beginnings. There will be an emphasis on change or transformation at home, as cycles in your emotional or domestic life come to an end. As Pluto harmonizes with giant Jupiter at the start of the year, these changes may bring an international or spiritual flavour to your situation. Powerful people or strong spiritual beliefs could make their presence felt.
Contacts and connections may add or subtract to the quality or content of home or family life and may also alter the balance of matters related to home and work. This will be a significant influence until the middle of April.
Work and health
As always, health and daily routines are of significant concern, as they are at the core of your sign's interests and needs. As revolutionary Uranus prepares to depart your solar sixth house of work and health in March, the coming years should see a more stable period for the Virgin. Many of you will have been through changes, some work-related, others health-related, that will have put you in a different position in your working or daily life. Some will have changed jobs, others will have learned new skills and many of you will have changed or had to change the direction of your daily lives altogether.
New options now await you with regard to the general run of your interactions with people on a 'one to one' basis. However, you will still need to keep a watchful eye on the transit of mystic Neptune through your solar sixth house. Healthcare and diet need to be high on your agenda, especially if matters of fatigue or toxic reactions are involved. This transit may bring some of you to the healing arts or to new creative and spiritual practices. These may have an unusual flavour but be careful that any new measures you adopt have a healthy sense of realism to underpin them.
Cultivate contacts and connections that advance your working or professional situation until the middle of April. Dealings with people in authority will be either necessary or advantageous. You may have some clashes with bureaucracy and a domestic or working matter may be involved. From the beginning of June you will be able to advance your situation through the cooperation of others or the development of a close knit community or family group. Focus on your goals. Some of you may be drawn to care work, hospitality or healing.
After August 27th, giant Jupiter moves into your sign, urging you towards a program of growth and expansion with your skills, practices and ideas. This is a time when travel, study and connections with people of academic or professional standing or from overseas will be important. You can strike out in a new direction, learn new skills or put new ideas to the test. Take a risk. Cross a new horizon. You could also advance your situation through important new connections in your personal life.
Mercury moves into retrograde (reverse) motion three times a year for about three weeks each time. This phase heralds a time of confusion and misunderstandings that can affect arrangements, travel, transport, appliances, machinery and communications. The breakdowns that occur are a function of neglect, inattention, simple misunderstandings or component failure. They will often bring to the fore the very contingency we should have planned for and didn't. When the retrograde phase occurs, watch out for such possibilities as well as putting off major decision-making or the signing of crucial documents and agreements. We tend to miss things while Mercury is in reverse motion and then have to come back and do them again. A process of review in the retrograde phase can efficiently show where problems might lie and help us with damage control or the mending of things. Double check arrangements at these times! What you think you've said and what others have understood will often prove to be two different things.
Mercury's first retrograde cycle comes on January 2nd in Capricorn and your solar fifth house of pleasure, creativity and recreation. There might be difficulties in dealings with children. There may also be interruptions or difficulties with regard to your normal leisure activities. Watch for minor injuries at this time. There might be changes or even setbacks with regard to creative projects you are working on. Don't try to push forward. Study the changed situation and alter your approach. Mercury moves forward again on January 23rd.
Mercury's second retrograde cycle begins on April 26th in Taurus and your solar ninth house of higher education, overseas travel and philosophy. Travel or study plans may be interrupted or subject to delays. They may end by taking a new turn. There could be legal matters to be dealt with. You may have difficult interactions with people of other cultural backgrounds. This may require careful handling. There may be a revision of your ideas or belief system. This may come out of clashes or disagreements. Mercury moves forward again on May 20th.
The messenger's third retrograde cycle begins on August 28th in your sign. Problems with communication may be paramount and it might be difficult to express what you feel or to get your point across. This could be an accident-prone period so take additional care. You may need to apply your legendary faculty for discrimination and take a good long look at yourself. Make change where it is needed. Focus on communication with partners and close associates. Take extra time and trouble to get it right. You may revise your plans or personal direction in this period. Mercury moves forward again on September 20th.
A fourth retrograde cycle begins as 2003 comes to a close so the year may end on a note of uncertainty. Mercury goes into reverse motion on December 17th in Capricorn and your solar fifth house. Once again, dealings with children may be problematic. There might be interruptions to leisure or recreational pursuits. Creative projects may suffer delays. Financial speculations or gambling could be costly. This cycle will not end until January 2004.
Your Full Moon comes on March 18th, bringing tension with Mercury the messenger in your solar seventh house of partnership. There could be communication difficulties or confusion between you and close associates. There may be problems keeping a balance of professional and personal obligations. Older people or significant responsibilities may be problematic in your close relationships. A trying situation may come to a head. Take things calmly and rationally and make sure that you go through everything that's at issue.
Your New Moon comes on August 27th with both luminary bodies conjoined with Venus the goddess and giant Jupiter in your sign. This could represent a significant new start or beginning with something or someone important to you. As mighty Mars opposes Venus, Sun and Moon at this time, you may have to make an effort towards keeping a balance between newfound desires or activities and your involvement with others. What you decide to do may not please everyone so be prepared to take a little flak. Besides, there will be plenty of support from other quarters.
Eclipses of both the Sun and the Moon often indicate the end of a cycle or a significant change in the direction or pattern of the affairs governed by the house in which the eclipse falls. Eclipses of the Sun may affect work, direction and relations with people in authority. Eclipses of the Moon may affect matters of home, family and emotions as well as relations with women and children. Both may affect your health.
A Lunar Eclipse occurs at the Full Moon on May 16th. This comes in Scorpio and your solar third house of travel, siblings and communication. There could be delays or changes of plans with regard to travel matters. You may experience communication problems or even a fallout with siblings. Matters of belief may come into question because of powerful changes in the world around you.
May 31st brings a solar eclipse at the New Moon in Gemini and your solar tenth house of profession, status and authority. There could be changes or an end to a cycle in your working life. Dealings with people in authority, especially women, could come to a halt or block your progress. You may simply have to back up and start again if you have hit an obstacle to your career development.
The Full Moon brings a Lunar Eclipse in Taurus and your solar ninth house on November 9th. Overseas travel or communication may suffer delay or a setback. There may be an end of a cycle with studies or an interruption to educational development. Legal matters may become problematic. Powerful events or insightful consideration could bring about a change in attitude or belief.
A Solar Eclipse in Sagittarius and your solar fourth house comes with the New Moon on November 23rd. Domestic or emotional matters may come to the end of a cycle. There could be changes or endings within the home environment or the family. There might be problems with family members that require careful handling because of unstable influences or circumstances.
The Lunar Nodes are a point of contact and connection by which we grow and develop through associations with the world around us. They also have a strong bearing on the resolution of outstanding karmic matters. In mid April the Nodes move into Taurus and Scorpio, activating the business of your solar third and ninth houses. Communication, overseas and domestic travel, connections with people of other cultures and backgrounds, an in-depth examination of your beliefs, any or all of these could be significant factors in the progress of your life after mid April. Travel, publishing, legal matters, involvement with the armed services and questions of religious or political beliefs could play a strong part in your personal cosmos. Many of you will have to make strong decisions about what you truly value and believe in. Choose the simplest and most abiding beliefs and you will find the strength to act in the proper way.