New Developments at Astrology on the Web. As Imbolc approaches and Mars prepares to turn retrograde in Virgo on the 24th, some major new developments are in the wind for your fav astro site, Astrology on the Web – which has been continously on line since March 1998. We have been negotiating with a major investor and expect substantial changes in weeks ahead. They will take over the technical side of our beloved site, but I will still be in charge of updating the forecasts and our other material. Your expert contributors, Sue Hopper, Lili Rosace, Malvin Artley, Neil and Richard Giles, Stephen Kane and all the rest will still be sending in their brilliant work, so I expect that you will experience no upsets there, although there may be changes in the look of the site and even some down-time during the switch-over. I will also be spending more time on our sister-site, TruthStar.com, so you can expect big changes there too! Hopefully I will get a bit of extra time to do more music and other interests. Unfortunately our Comments sector may not survive (I will transfer that to TruthStar if I can) but the AstroShop and consultations will remain the same. We still hope to expand into other improvements, such as Video consultations, Video horoscopes, Oracles and the like. This development has been signalled by the movement of the Moon's Nodes over my natal ascendant/descendant axis and the site's mid-heaven, so there's a typical case of how the astrological markers of fate operate in the real world. It looks like a marvellous and fascinating year ahead, so keep your head down and your heart up!
The Warrior Turns...! On January 24th, 2012, Mars reaches his retrograde station at 23°06' Virgo just after the New Moon in Aquarius, in preparation for a period of retrograde motion in Virgo that will last until April 14th, 2010. The effects of the retrograde period will continue to be felt until he returns in direct motion on June 19th, 2012 to the degree where he first made his station (23° Virgo 06). The first beginnings of the effect take place from November 16, 2011, as Mars begins to slow, so prepare for issues to cloud in the Mars Shadow, especially if you have strong Mutable Sign placements in your chart. The Mutable Signs are Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces. Mars fires our emotions and energizes our passions, but also powers our mental endeavours and communicative skills. Mars describes male relationships and associations, risk-taking inclinations, and the physical challenges you are likely to encounter. Mars endows powerful energy and an indomitable will to succeed, but can mean accidents, injuries, anger, rage, warfare or other forms of violence! Check out Mars Retrograde.
Way of the Water-Bearer! Aquarius, the sign of determined intellect, unorthodox relationships and brotherly love, is the eleventh sign of the tropical zodiac. As we celebrate the ingress into Aquarius on Jan. 20, we are focused on exploring the deep and fascinating world of astrology and relationships. Aquarius, the Water-Bearer, our featured Sign of the month has a thoughtful, intelligent approach, but loves to take things to the limit, especially along little-known pathways. Charming, exciting and unpredictable, yet somehow strangely detached from the proceedings, Aquarians are one of the zodiac's most eccentric personalities. They look for the unusual and challenging, while at the same time seeking romance, tenderness and understanding in their relationships. Aquarians love to experiment and often find themselves in steamy situations, yet they do seek stable long-term relationships and will commit themselves firmly to their loved ones. Read about Aquarius and all the other signs right here on our website.
Neptune Enters Pisces Feb 3. Happy New Year! 2011 was a remarkable year, thanks to the movement of cosmic factors over sensitive points in the zodiac. Now 2012 looks to be more of the same! In this article, astrologer Rob Tillett discusses the transit of Neptune, Lord of the Sea into Pisces, the sign of the Fishes. This rare move from detached, intellectual Aquarius to mystical Pisces brings an intense new flavour to our lives! Under the subliminal power of Neptune, healing spiritual and creative forces will surface. Social and religious forces will seek to influence governments and the powers that be. However, the negative side is more likely to affect the majority of unawakened souls, who will suffer from obsession, and deception from secret enemies. The authorities are likely to try to hold back the tide by imprisoning their opponents, if not by brainwashing and propagandising them into obedient drug-addled slugs. Neptune in Pisces will move many of us to selfless service, or self-sacrifice, on behalf of those who have been victimised. Check out Neptune Enters Pisces.
Juno Sospita. Juno is an ancient Roman goddess, the queen of the gods (Juno Regina). The daughter of Saturn and Opis, she was the sister of Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto, Ceres and Vesta. The mother of Mars, Minerva and Vulcan, she was soon identified with the Greek goddess, Hera, but seems to have been of early Etruscan origin. Like her sisters, she has now been designated an asteroid, a minor planet, orbiting between Mars and Jupiter in our Solar System. Juno has gradually developed an astrological following too, and Juno (this month in dynamic Aries), describes the ways in which we face the issues of compatibility, receptivity to others, mutual sharing, trust, jealousy, possessiveness and power struggles. She held the Romans together for more than a thousand years, so let's hope she can do something for the postmodern world. Juno Sospita (Juno the Saviour) was the patron goddess of the Roman State, and her festival was held on Feb 1. Ties in nicely with Imbolc, Candlemas, and the other cross-quarter festivities of the current age! Click to read more about Juno.
Oimelc, the Quickening. Neil Giles, our Celtic expert, tells us that the festival that follows Samhain in the Celtic calendar is Oimelc (pronounced Im-melg). At Oimelc (a.k.a. Imbolc or Candlemas), Brigid, the ancient Irish goddess of the hearth, fire, craft and poetry was invited to visit and bless each house for the coming season of spring and summer. Her blessings would quicken the life force, bringing creative power to the land and the hearth and to the minds, hearts and spirits of the people. Later, Oimelc became known as Brigantia, the festival of Brigid. Traditionally, women would gather at Brigantia and ascend into the skies on magical horses, brooms made of Rowan, Ash and Birch. They would fly to the mountain tops and join in circle to honour the Lady, Anu, Queen of the Heights whose ecstatic whirling dance brought the lightning and storms to cleanse the face of the earth and quicken the soil for the life to come in spring and summer. Click to read more about Oimelc.
Imbolc. Mike Nichols explains that February 2 marks the celebration of the ancient festival of Imbolc, at the cross-quarter day known in Christian times as Candlemas, or St Brigit's Day. The holiday is also called “Brigit’s Day”, in honor of the great Irish Goddess Brigit. At her shrine, the ancient Irish capitol of Kildare, a group of nineteen priestesses (no men allowed) kept a perpetual flame burning in her honor. She was considered a Goddess of fire, patroness of smithcraft, poetry, and healing (especially the healing touch of midwifery). This tripartite symbolism was occasionally expressed by saying that Brigit had two sisters, also named Brigit. (Incidentally, another form of the name Brigit is Bride, and it is thus she bestows her special patronage on any woman about to be married or handfasted, the woman being called “bride” in her honor.) Nowadays, it's also celebrated in New England as Groundhog Day! Click to read more about Imbolc.
Candlemas. Rob Tillett looks at the history and meaning of Candlemas (February 2) and how it ties in with the ancient pagan festival of Imbolc, or Oimelc, celebrating the cross-quarter day marking the first stirrings of spring. This day is also linked with the worship of Brigid, the primeval goddess, marked in the modern age by St Bride's Day, February 1. In the Christian Calendar, February 2 marks the presentation of the baby Jesus to the Temple, a rite of purification held 40 days after the festival of his birth (Dec. 25). This is Candlemas, a major Christian Feast, one of the "cross-quarter days", marking the mid-point between the solstice (Christmas) and the equinox (Easter). Click to read about Candlemas.
Capricorn Solar Festival. Malvin Artley, our regular esoteric commentator examines the subtle meaning of the Full Moon in Cancer for 2012. This is Capricorn's Full Moon, as the Moon is full in the sign opposing the Sun. The full moon of Capricorn (the full moon at Cancer 18º26') takes place on the 9th of January at 07:31 UT (02:31 AM EST in the US; 05:31 PM AEDT in Australia). The struggle with our sense of what we value will definitely increase this year as financial sectors in various parts of the world continue to wobble, the gap between rich and poor continuing to widen as the middle class shrinks. It is harder and harder for most of us to make a crust, as we say, yet we have tools at our disposal that were unthinkable twenty years ago—social networking and media skills, computational and technological applications for everything under the sun, and technology that is revealing unseen worlds and the larger universe to us in astonishing ways. In a way, we are indeed in a period of revelation, but hardly in an apocalyptic sense. What does this Capricorn interval say to us, then? Check out Malvin on the Full Moon in Cancer
Annual Forecasts for 2012. Season's Greetings, everyone! I hope you are all having a great Christmas break. It's nearly the end of 2011—and what a year it's been! One of the great things about astrology is that it points out the beginnings and endings of even the most horrendous circumstances (and the good ones too, of course). Astrology shows that the stars and planets provide a map to our personalities and a guide to our place in the world. It explains how the world is regular and predictable (up to a point!). An astrological forecast places these trends into a context, with regard to our own personal destinies. One of the most popular features at Astrology on the Web is our Annual Horoscope Forecast, giving an outline of the trends for year ahead. As the celestials are lighting our way, our favourite astrologer Sue Hopper (Moonbeam) has come back to astrological writing after a long break and has provided us with some authentic insights into your year ahead for each sign. Our 2012 forecasts are now all on line. How cool is that! Check out Sue's fabulous forecasts for your year ahead in 2012...
Merry Christmas! Christmas is a time of joy and thanksgiving, when the world celebrates the influx of divine life into the cosmic grid. In 2011, Venus enters Aquarius just before the Solstice on Dec 21 (which is the cosmic source of the Christmas celebration), then on Christmas Day, Dec 25, Jupiter turns direct, announcing the relief of some of the celestial pressure. With Mars slowing to a rare retro phase and Mercury still in his shadow phase a weird atmosphere still surrounds us, but this should be eased by the New Moon in Capricorn on Christmas Eve, Dec 24. It's definitely a time of feasting and gift-giving, celebrated by millions of people all over the world. Christmas is the official commemoration of the birth in Israel some two thousand years ago of Jesus Christ, the divine child – but it is a general time of celebration for people all over the world, of all cultures and faiths. It has been so since prehistoric times, when all cultures celebrated the birth of the Sun as it emerged from the depths of the Solstice. Rob Tillett explains the meaning of this festival and puts it into an astrological context. Read more on Christmas.
The Colour of Christmas and the Father Christmas Image. Richard Giles, astrologer and feng shui consultant, has been busy researching the origins of that grand icon of Christmas, Santa Claus (Father Christmas) and his reindeer-powered sleigh. The origins of Santa Claus go back much further than we think: to Saint Nicholas born Parara, Turkey in 270 CE. He died in 345 on December 6th. He was only named a saint in the 19th century. Nicholas was among the bishops who convened the Council of Nicaea in 325 and created the New Testament. He helped people by handing out food to the hungry, and is the patron saint of children. Richard tells us the origins of Father Christmas have a mixed and interesting history, even dating back to ancient pagan times, but especially in his transformation to the ruddy red Coca Cola symbol that first began in the 1920's, thanks to artist Haddon Sundblom! Read more on The Colour of Christmas.
Here Comes the Sun King! The solstice is upon us, which is marked by the entry of the Sun into the sign of Capricorn, the sign of worldly achievement, spiritual birth and serious ambition. Conservative Capricorn is the tenth sign of the tropical zodiac. As we celebrate the ingress into Capricorn, we are focused on exploring the deep and fascinating world of astrology and relationships. Capricorn, the Sea-Goat, our featured Sign of the month has a cautious, yet determined personality, with a sense of the rightness and order of things which can be both frustrating and reassuring. Capricornian people, while both energetic and ambitious (especially in later life), have a strong sense of loyalty and dedication. Their passions are slow to ignite, but once burning, the blaze can light up the world! Capricorns seek stable long-term relationships, can be jealous and possessive, but give deeply of themselves to their loved ones. Read about Capricorn and all the other signs right here on our website: click here.
The Solstice – Time of Cosmic Rebirth. The word "Solstice" derives from the Latin Sol + systere, meaning "Sun" + "standing still". At the December Solstice, the Sun halts over the Tropic of Capricorn (23°S26') for some three days at the end of his journey south before recommencing his life-giving journey north. This, the longest night of the year (or shortest in the Southern Hemisphere), happens in 2011 at Yuletide on the eve of the 22nd of December (Dec. 21), for the measurement of days once began from sunset, rather than midnight. People across the world, in every culture, have assigned a great deal of meaning to this journey of the Sun; a broad spectrum of mythological, religious and social customs have accumulated around it. At the time of the solstice (to be exact, just as the solstice ended), people celebrated the birth of the Sun on December 25, now most widely celebrated as Christmas Day. The solsticial period lasts some three days, so when the Sun begins to rise earlier again, it has traditionally been cause for jubilation since prehistoric times. More on The Solstice.
Have a Cool Yule! December 21 marks the celebration of the ancient festival of Yule at the Solstice. Yule is the pagan celebration of the birth of the Sun and the turning of the Wheel of the Year. The birth of the Sun has been celebrated since time immemorial on or around the solstice, which is why the birth of Jesus is celebrated at this time (December 25). Ancient Rome recognised it in the day of the birth of the Invincible Sun, so the choice of this day for Christmas was a handy christianization of the established festival of Mithras, the Sun God and a number of other Solar Heroes. That is why John Calvin and other leaders of the Reformation abhorred it, why the Puritans refused to acknowledge it, much less celebrate it (to them, no day of the year could be more holy than the Sabbath), and why it was even made illegal in Boston! Ultimately, of course, the holiday is rooted deeply in the cycle of the year. It is the winter solstice that is being celebrated, seedtime of the year, the longest night and shortest day. It is the birthday of the new Sun King, the Son of God—by whatever name you choose to call him. On this darkest of nights, the Goddess becomes the Great Mother and once again gives birth. Read more on the ancient festival of Yule, the Wheel of the Year.
Sagittarius Solar Festival (and the late 2011 Eclipses). Malvin Artley, our regular esoteric commentator examines the subtle meaning of the Full Moon in Gemini for 2011, a rare total Lunar Eclipse. This is Sagittarius's Full Moon, as the Moon is full in the sign opposing the Sun. The full moon of Sagittarius (the full moon at Gemini 18º09') takes place on the 10th of December at 14:33 UT (09:33 AM EST in the US; 01:33 AM AEDT on Dec. 11th in Australia). Apologies, dear readers, this article is a little late appearing, thanks to the unfortunate effects of the eclipses on your beloved editor. Aside from falling desperately ill, my house was struck by lightning, which blasted quite a sensational hole in my life, among other things, such as phone, computer, internet, TV etc etc. Still, it's coming back together and no doubt all will be well. For now. why not check out Malvin on the latest cosmic esoterica...
Total Lunar Eclipse at the Full Moon in Gemini. A total lunar eclipse on December 10th, 2011 occurs at 18°11' Gemini, a Mutable sign, with the Sun in Sagittarius (remember, the Sun and Moon are always opposed at a lunar eclipse, since it's a Full Moon). This magnificent spectacle will be the last lunar eclipse of 2011, a powerful total eclipse at the Moon's descending node in the constellation Auriga, the Charioteer. The entire cosmic show is visible from Asia and Australia. For North Americans, the eclipse is in progress as the Moon sets. Observers throughout Europe and Africa will miss the early eclipse phases because they occur before moonrise. Unfortunately, the eclipse cannot be seen from South America or Antarctica. This eclipse occurs at 18°09' of Gemini, tightly conjunct the Fixed Star, Hoedus I, a star of Mars (passion; war; conflict) and Mercury (intellect; communication) It is a part of the asterism The Kids in the lap of the Charioteer, just below the she-goat Amalthea. Fortunately for us, it is rising, bringing out its better side, though not if you are a mariner, as storms are indicated, possibly even earthquakes. Auriga is associated by the Qabbalists with the Hebrew letter Samech and the 15th Tarot Trump, The Devil. The Devil is a card about excess, pleasure and abandon! Read more about the Lunar Eclipse in Gemini.
Martian Volte-Face. Mars is the planet of war, of explosive passion and of instinctive growth. The ancient Warrior God is at the peak of his influence between November 18th 2011 and June 19th 2012, due to a potent retrograde phase in Virgo that awakens some powerful aspects in the heavens. This will be a massively potent transit, lasting some eight months (where Mars normally spends only about six weeks in each sign). As promised (and to the great joy and relief of all!) the redoubtable Neil Giles, astrologer, mythologer and runemeister, and an Aries himself, returns from a long stint in the badlands to discuss the awesome effects of these aspects on the sublunary realms, including a detailed analysis of this transit's effects on each individual sign. Read more about the Martian Volte-Face.
Partial Solar Eclipse at the New Moon in Sagittarius. The fourth and final solar eclipse of 2011 is a partial eclipse of the Sun at the New Moon in Sagittarius on November 25th. A partial eclipse is when only a part of the eclipsed body of the Sun is blocked out and darkened. It is not unduly strong, being partial and over sparsely populated areas. It will be visible from high latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere, including southern South Africa, Antarctica, Tasmania and much of New Zealand. There are some difficult aspects, especially for those born in early Sagittarius and the other Mutable Signs (Gemini, Virgo and Pisces). This eclipse occurs at 02°37' of Sagittarius, the sign of the Archer, tightly conjunct the Fixed Star, Dschubba (δ scorpii), a star of Mars (passion; war; conflict) and Saturn (restriction; karma; sorrow) in the constellation of Scorpius, the Scorpion. It is one of three stars in the Crown of the Scorpion. According to Robson, Scorpius is associated by the Qabbalists with the Hebrew letter Oin and the 16th Tarot Trump, The Lightning-Struck Tower. It's very interesting in the light of the fall of the mighty, who have been toppling like ninepins. Read more about the Solar Eclipse in Sagittarius.
Sagittarius, the Archer! This is a potent time for Sagittarius, and I should know, as I have Sagittarius rising. Mercury has just turned retrograde in Sagittarius, just before a New Moon and (in some parts) a solar eclipse in Sagittarius—right on my ascendant. Ugh. However, Venus is there too, making everything just a little bit sweeter. Sagittarius, the sign of wide-ranging travel (both physical and mental), matters of the higher mind—and hzodiaca good time—is the ninth sign of the tropical zodiac. Sagittarius is our featured Sign of the month! Sagittarians have a dynamic personality, with a sense of personal freedom which can be both stimulating and challenging. Sagittarian people have a lively interest in exploring the distant reaches of the world, both innner and outer. They love to take chances and to travel, making them the great gamblers of the -->zodiacac. Sagittarians, the high priests of the zodiac, will rise to any challenge, especially in the area of romance. The famous emblem for Sagittarius is the Archer, armed with the arrow of truth. Free and honest in their approach, they expect others to be likewise. The Sagittarian arrow shoots for the stars, holding the blazing light of truth in an arc that illuminates the world. Admirers should remember that their honesty can on occasions be brutally frank, especially when extolling the virtues of their actions, or recounting one of their more dubious exploits. Read about Sagittarius and all the other signs right here on our website: click here.
Wealthy Stellar Fossils. Some of Milky Way's 'stellar fossils' – our galaxy's oldest stars – contain abnormally large amounts of heavy elements like gold, platinum and uranium. Where these large amounts came from has been a mystery, since they are usually seen in much later generations of stars. The Milky Way is a disc-shaped spiral galaxy with around 100 billion stars. Above and below the galactic plane there is a halo, which includes older stars dating back to the galaxy's childhood billions of years ago. In principle they should all be primitive and poor in heavy elements like gold, platinum and uranium. New research shows that the explanation lies in violent jets from exploding giant primeval stars. For more on this [offsite], see Ancient Stars Shed Light On the Prehistory of the Milky Way.
Mercury Turns Tail in Sagittarius. At 07:20 UT (Universal Time) Thursday, November 24th, 2011, Mercury the wise communicator—and universal trickster—turns retrograde at 20°06' Sagittarius in the sign of the Archer, sending communications, travel, appointments, mail and the www into a general snarlup! The retro period begins some days before the actual turning point (as Mercury slows) and lasts for three weeks or so, until December 14, 2011, when the Winged Messenger reaches his direct station. At this time he halts and begins his return to direct motion through the zodiac. Everything finally straightens out on January 1st, as he passes the point where he first turned retrograde. Mercury turns less than a day before the solar eclipse in Sagittarius. This is a very Sagittarian phase, because both Mercury and Venus are in the sign of the Archer, in conjunction with the Moon's north node, the Dragon's Head. This is significant because the Sun is also in Sagittarius and in less than 12 hours the Moon is there too, producing a Solar Eclipse at the New Moon in Sagittarius! It's time for a new stretrogradet the mighty watch their backs. Mercury remains retrograde in Sagittarius until December 14, 2011, and the shadow phase lasts until January 1, 2012. Read more on Mercury Retrograde.
Mars Moves into Virgo. At 04:16 UT (Universal Time) Friday, November 11th, 2011, Mars, the mighty cosmic Warrior, strides into the sign Virgo, for a very long stay indeed. Mars normally visits a sign for some 6 weeks, but once every two years or so, he decides to make camp in a sign for as long as 6 months! This is one of those times, thanks to a retro period beginning on January 24. The last time Mars went retrograde was in 2009, in Leo. I spoke to the Mars-ruled Neil Giles on the phone yesterday and he is beginning to recover from his disastrous health collapse and has promised to write an article on the upcoming retro phase for Mars, which will appear on this site sometime in December. It's great that Neil is able to give us some of his store of wisdom, and even greater that he is recovering his health, albeit slowly. If he can't get it together I will do the job, so fear not, Mars freaks! In the meantime, Marguerite Manning, author of Cosmic Karma: Understanding Your Contract With The Universe is a talented and thoughtful astrologer whose interests focus on our relationships at a karmic level. She argues that the position of Mars is critical because it is the driving force that empowers and ignites our lives. She looks at the karmic qualities of Mars in each sign in the natal chart. Read more on Mars, Our Astrological "Why" Chromosome!
Asteroid Near Miss..? An asteroid the size of an aircraft carrier will fly near Earth on Nov. 8, 2011. While there is no danger of it hitting us, experts say a similar-sized object hitting Earth would produce a 4,000-megaton blast, magnitude 7.0 earthquake and, should it strike in the deep ocean, 70-foot-high tsunami waves 60 miles from the splashdown. NASA scientists report this week that asteroid 2005 YU55 will pass between Earth and the Moon within 201,000 miles of Earth on its closest approach. If it were to strike a large city like Chicago, it would obliterate the entire city and leave few survivors. Fortunately, the chance of a large impact targeted on a city is very small. The last time an asteroid this size came close to Earth was in 1976, and the next known approach will be in 2028. The most recent impact of this size is not known, but about 20 similar craters are known in the geologic record, including Wetumpka in Alabama and Rock Elm in Wisconsin. Of the known large craters, the most recent are the six-mile-wide Bosumtwi crater in Ghana, about 1 million years old, and the nine-mile-diameter Zhamanshin crater in Kazakhstan, from about 900,000 years ago. For more on this [offsite], see Large Asteroid to Pass by Earth Nov. 8, but What If It Didn't?
New Guardian Energy Egg is 5 times stronger! Millions of us watch television, but how many of us are aware of how much, or in what ways, our energy, physical and psychological, is being affected by our viewing habit? Usually, we only notice something when our reaction is extreme. But when our reactions are below the threshold of our awareness, we remain blissfully ignorant even as the damage to our energy increases over the years. Our exposure to environmental stress is only going to get worse as industries proliferate their environmentally toxic innovations (Smart Meters being one just coming over the horizon) and increasingly influence government policy for liberal distribution of these dangerous devices. But is there a way to Block This Stress? Actually, yes! There is. The New Guardian Energy Egg from our Energy Doc has massively boosted protection against WIFI, mobile phone, television and Smart Meter stresses creating havoc in our human energetic systems. 21st Century environmental stress affects some more than others, but here's the goods on how and why we all need a Guardian! Learn more about our new Guardian Energy Egg.
New Key to the Astrological Symbols. The language of astrology is a symbolic one, and it has its own alphabet! Your birth chart, or horoscope, is usually shown in the form of a wheel, symbolising the cycles periodically undergone by all living things on this planet. The symbols ("glyphs") displayed stand for the astrological signs, planets and other chart factors representing forces which may affect your life at any given time. Each of these astrological factors represents a coded set of drives in your sub-conscious. Drives may be activated and brought to your awareness by circumstances in your life, presenting you with a range of choices. Of course, your choices are to a considerable extent limited and determined by your character, which is itself revealed through an understanding of the symbols that make up the chart. This new section presents a visual key to the symbols and glyphs used in astrology. Check them out in our new Key to the Astrological Symbols.
Halloween. Halloween, the light-hearted modern festivity of ghosts and ghoulies, frights and feast, trick or treat, has much more serious (and scary!) origins in the ancient Celtic Feast of the Dead. All Saints' Day (November 1), also known as All Hallows' Day is followed by All Souls' Day (Nov 2), a christianized version of the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, the Feast of the Dead. The Christian theological basis for the feast is that the faithful on earth can aid the salvation of the departed souls by prayers, good deeds and especially by the sacrifice of the Mass, but the customs of Samhain are just a bit spookier! This festival has survived, due to its connection with the archetypal energies that it evokes and due to its more recent connection with the Christian festival of All Souls, which the Church has instituted as a substitute for this pagan celebration. Check out Halloween.
Sex, Death and Rebirth! As the blazing Sun enters Scorpio at the end of October 2011, Sue Hopper, a Pisces, has written a wonderful article on the subject of Sex, Death and Rebirth—the essence of the Scorpion heart—which we first published some time back on this site. It's intense! Sue (a.k.a. Moonbeam) is a great writer and a fabulous astrologer, and now that she is writing our Monthly Moonbeam again, it seems right to publish it once more here on Astrology on the Web. Now, read more on the Sex, Death and Rebirth: the Mysteries of Scorpio.
All Hallows' Eve. Samhain. All Hallows. All Hallows’ Eve. Hallow E’en. Halloween. The most magical night of the year. Exactly opposite Beltane on the wheel of the year, Halloween is Beltane’s dark twin. A night of glowing jack-o’-lanterns, bobbing for apples, tricks or treats, and dressing in costume. A night of ghost stories and séances, tarot card readings and scrying with mirrors. A night of power, when the veil that separates our world from the Otherworld is at its thinnest. Mike Nicholls explains that All Hallows' Eve is the eve of All Hallows’ Day (November 1). And for once, even popular tradition remembers that the eve is more important than the day itself, the traditional celebration focusing on October 31, beginning at sundown. More on All Hallows' Eve.
Diwali, Festival of Lights. The best-known of the Hindu festivals, Diwali is celebrated throughout India at the New Moon on the fifteenth day of the month Kartika, or Ashwin (october/november), as well as in Indian communities throughout the world. A moveable feast, Diwali happens on October 26, 2011 – though it is a five-day festivity. A harvest festival and a celebration of the Lunar New Year, Diwali has strong astrological energies, like similar festivals the world over. The worship of Lakshmi, goddess of wealth, and Ganesha, the divine remover of obstacles, is also celebrated throughout the country at this time. It signifies the renewal of life, so it is the done thing to wear new clothes on the day of the festival. It seems to have begun as a harvest festival, yet, as the beginning of the Lunar New Year, it also heralds the approach of winter and the start of a new sowing season. The name "Diwali" (from the sanskrit: deepãvali, meaning "a garland of lamps") is spot on for this festival, when every household is ablaze with light! It's like Christmas, the New Year and the Fourth of July all rolled up into one, with gambling and new clothes thrown in for good measure... Check out Diwali – and send a Diwali Greeting to friends and family.
Depth and Intensity! Seductive Scorpio, the sign of intensity, sexuality and deep transformation, is the eighth sign of the tropical zodiac. As the Sun moves joins Venus and Mercury in Scorpio, under pressure from Mars in Leo, we are focused on exploring the deep and fascinating world of astrology and relationships. Scorpio, the Scorpion, our featured Sign of the month has a magnetic personality, with a sense of personal power which can be both exciting and overwhelming (for gentler souls!). Scorpio people are intensely interested in discovering the deep truths about relationships, spiritual matters and themselves. They love to get to the bottom of things and make great detectives. There's no casual fooling around on the surface with a Scorpio! They want to get to the heart of the matter and soon become impatient with superficiality. Read about Scorpio and all the other signs right here on our website: click here.
Steve Jobs 1955–2011 It's been a rough few weeks for fathers lately. First, my own father died, then a week later, my best friend's father died, then my son's guitar teacher's father died, then, ... ulp! Steve Jobs died! Steve Jobs, genius force behind Apple Computers, was the father of four children, but he is best known for being the father of the Personal Computer—yes, the Apple, the first personal computer, was developed with Woz Wozniak in his garage in Silicon Valley. Not to mention the Macintosh, desktop publishing, the iPod, the iPhone, iTunes, the iPad, Pixar Studios etc etc. I've personally used a Mac since 1984 (when they first came out) and this site also runs on Mac power! Born Feb 24, 1955 at 7:15 PM in San Francisco, Steve was given up by his birth-mother Joanna Simpson and adopted by Paul and Clara Jobs, eventually becoming a diehard Bob Dylan fan, a zen buddhist practitioner and a vastly influential entrepreneur. In 1978 he had a child (Lisa Brennan-Jobs—remember the Apple Lisa?) out of wedlock with Chris-Ann Brennan, but later married Laura Powell (born 1964) in 1991, with whom he had three children (Reed, Erin and Eve). Steve Jobs died of cancer on Oct 5 2011 with a net worth of 5.5 billion dollars. But money was not Steve's primary driver. A creative, spiritually-oriented Pisces with perfectionist Virgo rising and Moon in fiery Aries, his ruling Mercury was retrograde in Aquarius, the sign of technological achievement and he was a fiercely driven creative visionary, who demanded perfection and extraordinary achievements from himself and his team. Apple under Steve Jobs has completely reshaped the way we see the world. You can't say that about many people. Thomas Edison. Henry Ford. The Beatles. Bob Dylan. Akito Morita (Sony). All inspired him. Vale Steve! Read more on Steve Jobs (offsite). Navratri, Goddess Festival of Nine Nights! The colourful Navratri festival is celebrated in India for nine nights around the beginning of October, although as the dates of the festival are determined according to the lunar calendar, the festival is a moveable feast. Navratri in 2011 begins on Wednesday September 28th and continues for 9 days until Thursday, October 6th. The Navratri commences on the first day (pratipada) of the bright fortnight of the lunar month of Ashwin. The mood of Navratri is very colourful, incorporating veneration of the goddess with commemoration through song and dance. Navratri actually means "Nine Nights" (nav meaning nine and ratri meaning nights). The nine nights are devoted to the reverence of Goddess Durga (Mā Durga), who is believed to exist in many forms as the manifestation of the absolute energy that pervades the Universe. Read More on Navratri. Kosmic Kolams. This updated chapter of the Gospel of Grandpa is just in time to coincide with the Indian Festive Season of Navratri. Here grandpa shows the children that everything in nature inherently seems to possess the qualities of symmetry and of being cyclical. "Kolam" in the Tamil language is a rendering of symmetrical floral designs then displayed on the house for the festivity. Everything in nature inherently seems to possess the qualities of symmetry and of being cyclical. Even man's thoughts – which results in his creations too exhibiting these traits. This is one reason that celestials – which are also nature's creation exhibiting similar character, are correlated to the destiny of humans. Just as grandma drew kolams on the floor, celestials drew kolams in space! Ram Ramakrishnan has again given us a marvellous insight into the natural world, as seen through the eyes of grandpa and the children. Check out Kosmic Kolams. Monthly Forecasts. The cosmos has been gunning for us lately, as anyone can see from just looking at the nightly news, and the impending alignment of comet Elenin with the Sun and Earth will no doubt stir the pigeons. We shall watch with interest. However, for the month to come, we have two sets of monthly forecasts on Astrology on the Web – and they are both on line early for October. That's because Susan Hopper, a wonderful (and punctual!) astrologer, writer and friend, is writing the monthly horoscopes and this month we have them all up already. Also on line early are our monthly tarotscopes from the redoubtable Lili Rosace, whose skill with the Tarot cards is legendary! Be sure to read what the cards and the stars have to say about your month ahead. It might surprise you! Artistry and Charm! Delightful Libra, the sign of harmony, balance, justice and human relationships is the seventh sign of the tropical zodiac. At the Equinox, which always marks a new beginning and the turning point of the year, we celebrate the ingress into Libra, the cardinal air sign. Libra, the Scales, our featured Sign of the month is a sign of social charm, artistic appreciation and fashion sense, but one whose innate sense of fairness and balance often leads to a frustratingly long time to make those crucial decisions! The focal point of elegance and chic in the zodiac, Libra is ruled by Venus, the planet of love and sensual delight. Librans seek relationship with an avid fascination. Libra lives for love — and style! So much in love with love, Librans sometimes fail to notice how many admirers they are holding on a string...
Charming Libra loves exploring every facet of relationship, being always on display and always on the lookout for Mr/Ms Right (even if already involved, love-loving Libra is ready to jump ship should something a little brighter appear on the horizon). Read about Libra and all the other signs, right here on our website: click here
The Equinox. Well, we are into September now, which is the month of the Equinox, the balancing point of the year. The Official Equinox is on the 21st, but this year the ingress into Libra occurs on September 23 at 09:06 UT, marked in the Christian Calendar by Michaelmas, the Feast of St Michael the Archangel, on September 29 (the Equinox is a phase not a moment). Those of us in northern climes are about to celebrate the harvest in one way or another as examined by Mike Nichols in Harvest Home (the pagan fest on Sep. 25) – even though the agricultural mythos is little more than a folk-memory for those who dwell in the switched-on mega-cities of the 21C. Those of us in the southern hemisphere are throwing out the woollies and preparing for the influx of spring! How's that for a mixture of metaphors...? Click for more on the The Equinox.
Michaelmas, the Christian Equinox Festival. September's Equinox in much of Europe marks the traditional end of the harvest, when sickles and scythes slash and snip in the reaping of the grain. Astrologically, the Equinox marks the beginning of the sign Libra – the exaltation of Saturn, the grim reaper! On September 29th, Michaelmas (pron: "Mickle-mus") is the Christian Harvest Feast marking the Equinox, held in honour of St Michael the Archangel, one of the principal angels in the Christian heavenly host. Angels are believed to be divine beings who serve as messengers and representatives of God – though in Michael's case, he was also the chief general of the divine army responsible for expelling the Enemy, the rebellious archangel Lucifer and his gang of fallen angel followers from Heaven. Check out Michaelmas.
Harvest Home. September 25 is known as Harvest Home, a celebration of the Autumn Equinox . Mike Nichols explains that this day, one of the four traditional "quarter days", is marked in the Christian Faith by the Feast of Michaelmas on September 29. It is the second of the three harvest festivals of the Pagan year: the first, Lammas on August 1 and the last, Samhain on October 31. Despite the bad publicity generated by Thomas Tryon’s novel, Harvest Home is the pleasantest of holidays. Admittedly, it does involve the concept of sacrifice, but one that is symbolic only. The sacrifice is that of the spirit of vegetation, John Barleycorn. Occurring one quarter of the year after Midsummer, Harvest Home represents mid-autumn, autumn’s height. It is also the autumnal equinox, one of the quarter days of the year, a Lesser Sabbat and a Low Holiday in modern Witchcraft. Click for more on Harvest Home.
Libra the Fair. Our fav astrologer Sue Hopper is a charming Pisces, the exaltation of Venus, but thanks to her sister, she has a great appreciation for the Venus-ruled air sign of Libra. She tells us that stylish, relationship-focused Libra is also cerebral, socially-oriented, and insists on balance and moderation. With Saturn currently transiting through its exaltation in Libra (2009–2012), this is a good time to look more closely at the sign so often associated with marriage and partnerships. Sue says: "Libra is all about relationship, and the loving relationship between my sister and me gave me the start I needed to function well in society. It's not that my relationship with my parents wasn't important. It's just that my sister's Libran influence was the most critical factor in helping me to develop the social skills I needed to succeed as an adult." Libra represents the civilizing factor of society, symbolizing equilibrium and justice. And really, what could be more beautiful? Find out by reading Libra the Fair.
Opening the Star Eye. It's been a strange time in the cosmos lately and this has taken quite a toll on individuals, especially if you happen to live in the Middle East, Libya, Queensland, the Caribbean, the midwest and the east coast of America, or more lately in Texas! This cosmic horror show is by no means over yet, but there are still some things that can be done about it on a personal level. My own health has been suffering considerably recently, and to make matters worse, my father died on the weekend. Not so good. However, Monday night I took an Energy Solutions consultation on Skype with our Energy Doc, Stephen Kane and his lovely wife and compadre, Lynda Kane. This was truly excellent, for they pinpointed the problems and recommended solutions all in less than an hour. This only cost $130, and it was well worth it. I will keep you posted on how it goes, but in the past they have worked miracles! If you can't afford to spend any cash, our site has a great deal of info from the Energy Doc, including how to get down to it. Most of us want more out of life and many of us sense that there is more—or there could be more—to life than just having another same old good time or merely trying to get through another day. And, if there really is more to life, what do you need to do to find out what that is? What do you need to do to sort out your problems? Or, what do you need for your life to become more fulfilling even when you don’t have any problems? Find out by opening (and looking through!) The Star Eye.
Some Updates. Some big changes have been happening here at Astrology on the Web, as those of you who follow our parade will know! Kallindo Kal, our monthly forecaster, has been too ill to write them, so Sue Hopper has agreed to do them again. Welcome back Moonbeam! Her forecasts for September are already on line, but Amit, our webmaster, has been too ill to update the PHP programming to show her bio etc. If he does not recover in time, I will update it myself. Lili has already posted her Tarotscopes for September, and they are available on line right now. I heard from Neil Giles today, and he is now out of hospital (after more than 6 months inside) but is as yet unable to return to writing. He is however in process of slowly improving and hopefully will be back on deck again later this year. I myself have been in Adelaide for the past week, and have managed to update the weeklies (though a bit late with the Nude Horoscope LoveScopes! Sorry). I was in Adelaide because I felt that I should take my son JJ to see his grandfather, who was in hospital. We went over to Kangaroo Island to see him, and although grouchy, he did not seem too bad. I received a phone call from my mother tonight saying his condition has worsened and the doctors don't expect him to improve. Fortunately JJ got to see him in time. However, this break has caused me to fall behind with the daily forecasts, so let's hope I get them on line in time. Another all nighter!! That's been the story for a while here. Maybe I should find another occupation....
The Healing Power! Healing Virgo, the sign of analysis, criticism, purity and fine discrimination, is the sixth sign of the tropical zodiac. As we celebrate the ingress into Virgo, we are focused on exploring the deep and fascinating world of astrology and relationships. Virgo, the Virgin, our featured Sign of the month, is loaded with taste and discrimination – and is not frightened to tell you about it, either! A cautious lover, Virgo's need for stability and refined enjoyment means that admirers should step carefully. Virgo, ruled by communicative Mercury, more than anything loves to chat and talk about it. Since Mercury is now retrograde, even the sharp-eyed Virgin can suffer confusion and the effects of secrets exploding out of the past! However, once your favourite Virgo (male or female) has opened up to love, he or she is capable of great heights and depths. Just be sure to keep the environment tidy and the bathroom clean! May Virgo bring sexual healing to us all! Read about Virgo and all the other signs right here on our website: click here.
Gold Price Skyrockets! Here's another wakeup call, folks! On August 4, 2011, I reminded you to buy gold, as the celestial aspects point to the destruction (or at least a cosmic chokehold) of world paper currencies, especially the USD and the Euro as governments try to inflate themselves out of financial trouble. The turmoil predicted in the Mercury Retrograde article hit world share markets and the price of gold has gone through the roof. Between July 15, 2011 and August 4, gold accelerated from USD$1580 per ounce to $1680 per ounce, giving a hundred-dollar-an-ounce gain in a little over a fortnight. Gold coins (American Gold Eagles, Krugerrands and the like) have done even better. Well today (August 18) I looked at the price of gold and it is now hovering around the dizzying heights of USD$1820.00 an ounce, producing a gain over the past month of over two-hundred-and-forty dollars an ounce! That's a 15% growth in just over 4 weeks. Pheww. Mercury has now moved back into Leo, the sign whose metal is... guess what? Gold! Venus moves out of Leo into Virgo on Sunday, followed by the Sun on Aug 23 and Mercury on September 9. This will probably slow the pace of gold growth, making people take a more critical view of the proceedings, but it will be particularly good for Taurus and Virgo, especially around August 30, when Venus in Virgo makes the auspicious trine to Jupiter in Taurus, just as Jupiter is stationary, turning retrograde. I think the retro turn of Jupiter will increase financial and political anxiety, meaning the flight from currency to gold (and other scarce commodities) will nevertheless accelerate even further. Note also that in the somewhat longer term, the best investment is likely to be farmland, as food shortages affect more and more of the world. Read more on the cosmic effects of Mercury Retrograde.
Dawn Mission Sends Data. On March 29, 1807, German astronomer Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers spotted Vesta as a pinprick of light in the sky. After two centuries, NASA's Dawn spacecraft is now making a graceful spiral into the first of four planned science orbits during the spacecraft's yearlong visit to Vesta. Dawn began detailed observations on Aug. 11 at 9:13 a.m. PDT, marking the official start of the orbit phase roughly 1700 miles (2700 km) above the giant asteroid. Vesta, more a protoplanet than an asteroid, has a massive effect on the solar system. Other space rocks have collided with Vesta, knocking off bits of it. Those became space debris (Vestoids), and hundreds of such meteorites have ended up on Earth. Dawn launched in September 2007 and arrived at Vesta in July 2011. After a year at Vesta, Dawn heads for Ceres in July 2012, arriving in 2015. Ceres and Vesta are the largest bodies in the asteroid belt. Ceres is 6000 times less massive than Earth and almost 80 times less massive than our Moon—and Vesta is less than a quarter of the mass of Ceres. Although small, Ceres and Vesta gravitationally interact together and with other planets. They are continuously pulled or pushed slightly out of their initial orbit and these effects do not average out, so we cannot predict their positions. Ceres and Vesta affect the Earth, whose orbit also becomes unpredictable after only 60 million years. This means that Earth's eccentricity, which affects the large climatic variations on its surface, cannot be traced back more than 60 million years. Bad news for climate studies. That's physics, but we are interested in a more subtle force. Read more on the astrological effects of the Asteroids.
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