Weekly Update » September 03 - September 09, 2009
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Full Moon in Pisces/Virgo, Here’s to Your Health!
Mercury Squares Mars, Stations Retro;
Diane Sawyer Ascends to ABC Nightly News Throne
& My Love/Hate Relationship with Wikipedia

By Shelley L. Ackerman © 2009

Photo: Rich Press

The Full Moon on September 4th in Pisces/Virgo illuminates the healing, health, service and labor aspect of the horoscope. According to world-class mythic astrologer Don Cerow (his lectures are spellbinding):

“This Full Moon falls along the Virgo/Pisces polarity, an alignment that seeks spiritual mastery in the material world. Naturally, this is not an easy concept to integrate into the day-to-day jobs we all must undertake. In agricultural environments the community, home and families would focus on bringing in the crops for winter, bonding together in a common purpose. In contemporary society the educational cycle begins once again, as we mentally familiarize and groom our youth toward the future molds we would like to see them blossom into.”

School Days

Ah, “Back to School”, how I miss the relative simplicity of the 1960’s. This year, elementary school age kids have to deal with swine flu vaccinations and the controversy of whether their district will allow President Obama to (via television) welcome them back to the classroom or not. The purpose of the presidential address is to inspire kids to remain in school. However, conservatives are worried about it being an opportunity for the president to brainwash the kids with a liberal agenda. How ridiculous. Please give Obama a little credit. He’s where he is because he loved school and benefited from all that it had to offer. There’s no doubt in my mind that his goal is to encourage students to be the best they can be irregardless of the political leanings of their parents.

I wish I could be as enthusiastic or at the very least, as trusting about the proposed vaccinations against swine flu. And though the news from Washington State College about 2,000 students coping with the H1N1 virus is daunting, the guarantee that as much as half of the US will catch swine flu smacks of extremely efficient fear-mongering on the part of the ‘authorities’. I suppose they are merely trying to be responsible and avert a disaster, but I personally don’t want to be talked into catching anything and neither do most of the people I know. I won't be vaccinated and instead will opt to boost my immunity with garlic, vitamin C, colloidal silver, pomegranate, and whatever else I learn about in the days ahead. In the meantime, click here for some suggested strategies and click here for Juan Gonzalez’ report on Democracy Now.

Mercury Rx in Libra-Virgo

The ruler of Virgo, Mercury, is now at six degrees of Libra and in a hard aspect to Mars: On the one hand, this configuration can sharpen our perception, but on the other hand, it makes us impatient and quick to blurt out whatever is on our mind without thinking first. The same is true for transportation mishaps via road rage.

Mercury will station (stand still) and turn retrograde on Sunday September 6th and Monday (Labor Day) September 7th. Mercury stations are notoriously difficult travel days and are not that easy on machinery in general and computers in particular. Mercury will retrograde back into Virgo and conjoin Saturn twice (retro and direct) before re-entering Libra. The retrograde period will last through September 29/30. Mercury will leave the shadow period (six degrees of Libra) on October 15th.

If at all possible, travel on or before the station (Sept 5th) or after the station (Sept 8th). Use the time to clear clutter, go through papers, and get your home/office into tip-top functioning shape for the rigorous school year ahead.

Diane Sawyer

Diane Sawyer: Pluto Power!

In sharp contrast to NBC’s moronic decision to hire Jenna Bush-Hager as a contributor, (I loved Eric Etheridge’s take on NBC’s bad call in the NY Times in “There Goes the Meritocracy”), come January 2010, Capricorn Diane Sawyer will replace Charles Gibson as the anchor for ABC’s Nightly News. Born on December 22, 1945, beautiful Diane has Libra rising (with Neptune on the ascendant) and the Moon conjunct Pluto in Leo. In addition to Pluto in Capricorn on her Sun now, her progressed chart has the Sun in Pisces within a degree of a trine to her midheaven. Diane also has a retrograde Mars in Leo natally, and transiting Mars will be retrograde in Leo when she takes the chair in January. The announcement was made as transiting Mars in Cancer approached her midheaven.

Lois Rodden

Wicked Wiki:

Hardly a day goes by that I don’t look up a thing or two on Wikipedia, the most available source of instant info that the world has ever known. It’s so convenient, and makes research a breeze. The question is, how solid is any of it?

Astrologically, it is woefully unreliable. The birth dates given for public figures are often based on information that was wrong in the first place and has been repeated through the ages.

Recently (in 2008), our cherished astrodatabank which was created and stocked for years by the late Lois Rodden, our Patron Saint of accurate data-collection, was purchased by Alois Treindl of astrodienst.com. Because of Treindl’s generous spirit, the site, which is still being maintained by first-rate astrologer and data collector, Pat Taglilatelo, is now part of the Open-Wiki project, and offers the data (and resources) to all visitors for research purposes.

Unfortunately Wikipedia’s main site couldn’t care less. As a public service, I often go in there and correct wrong dates for public figures. I always supplied Lois (and Pat) with data whenever I can. The bone-heads at Wiki, mostly volunteers who have worked their way up the food chain, have gone in there and erased my corrections each and every time, even though I was clear about sourcing. I eventually got into a back and forth with one of these people, and tried to explain that Wiki and the very reliable astrodatabank are now “cousins”. I also described the painstaking work that astrological data collectors commit to in pursuit of a reliable date and time of birth, and told them about the “Rodden Rating System” that we use to determine levels of accuracy. He (or she or they) could have cared less. In my last correspondence with these contributors, they stated:

“…..Despite whatever level of professionalism exists among astrologers, we can't change what Wikipedia is without community consent. We have always been about reliable sources, and that's not likely to change any time soon. Having said that, if a birth certificate is available, it is possible - not definite - that it could be considered as a source here…..It doesn't much matter if someone has a copy of a birth certificate in their hands, there is also policy concerning verifiability. Unless the source data can be confirmed, it isn't verifiable. This is why sourcing needs to be to reliable sources. That is defined as credible published materials with a reliable publication process. I'm sure no one doesn't appreciate that there is a venture that has worked on such things for years, but there is no need to understand the particulars of that to say that the website would not be considered a reliable source. It is still a tertiary source…… Wikipedia is about verifiability, not truth.”

Needless to say, for the time being, I give up.

Get Out of Jail Free?

Would you go to jail for 13 years for a million bucks? In a new Texas law, if you’ve been wrongfully convicted and served time that you shouldn’t have, you will be compensated to the tune of $80G’s a year for each year served. And so it is for Thomas McGowan, who was mistakenly convicted and locked up for a rape and robbery he did not commit. According to Friday Sept 4th’s Associated Press report:

“Exonerees also receive an array of social services, including job training, tuition credits and access to medical and dental treatment. Though 27 other states have some form of compensation law for the wrongly convicted, none comes close to offering the social services and money Texas provides.”

I’m sorry for Mr.McGowan’s wasted years and the anguish he must have experienced during the trial and the long days and nights in the can, and am glad that he will be given something in return, though it’s hardly enough.

Of course, Texas leads the US in executions of prisoners who have gotten the death penalty, several of which were innocent to be sure.

Chart: Full Moon September 4, 2009
Click for larger view

The Planets This Week: All times are Eastern.

The Planets This Week: Times are Eastern
Sept 3: Moon in Aquarius V/C @ 1:20 am, enters Pisces @ 11:58 am;
            Mercury square Mars @ 12:19 pm
Sept 4: Full Moon @ 12:03 pm
Sept 5: Moon V/C @ 12:53 pm, enters Aries @ 10:14 pm
Sept 7: Moon V/C @ 8:13 pm, Mercury Station Retro @ 12:45 am
Sept 8: Moon enters Taurus @ 6:18 am

*Moon v/c = ‘void of course’, Best for spiritual not earthly pursuits

Bonus: 2009 Astro Crib Sheet

Major Planetary Activity for 2009.

Mercury begins 09 @ 0˚Aquarius07’ & ends 2009 @ 19˚Capricorn29’ Rx
Mercury Retrogrades 2009:
Jan 11-Feb 1, May 6-30, Sept 6-29, & Dec 26-Jan 15, 2010
Venus begins 2009 @ 27˚Aquarius48’ and ends 2009 @ 7˚Capricorn13’
Venus Retrograde: March 6-April 17, 2009
Mars begins 2009 @ 3˚Capricorn57’ and ends 2009 @ 18˚Leo54’ (Retro)
Mars turns retrograde on December 20th (thru March 10, 2010)
Jupiter begins 2009 @ 29˚Capricorn02’ and ends 2009 @ 26˚Aquarius15’
Jupiter enters Aquarius on January 5, 2009
Jupiter Retrograde: June 15-Oct 13, 2009
Saturn begins 2009 @ 21˚Virgo46’ Retrograde and ends 2009 @ 4˚Libra30’
Saturn Retrograde: Dec 31, 2008-May 16, 2009
Saturn enters Libra on Oct 29, 2009 (will retrograde back into Virgo in 2010)
Uranus begins 2009 @ 19˚Pisces15’ and ends @ 23˚Pisces05’
Uranus Retrograde: July 1-December 1, 2009
Neptune begins 2009 @ 22˚Aquarius27’ and ends 2009 @ 24˚Aquarius34’
Neptune Retrograde: May 28-November 4, 2009
Pluto begins 2009 @ 1˚Capricorn16’ and ends 2009 @ 3˚Capricorn17’
Pluto Retrograde: April 4-September 11, 2009

Weekly Horoscope:

ARIES: The ever-morphing needs of a spouse or significant other will undoubtedly be at odds with those of a family member and there’s very little you can do about it. Know that while Mars is transiting your 4th house, that family may get first dibs. Also know that ignoring the physical signals (wiring, odors, emissions, etc) that come from the home could be problematic. The Full Moon encourages you to pay close attention to the unconscious part of your nature which may require you to stay put and sit this one out. If need be say that your car is in need of repair (or your astrologer says that you’re grounded).

TAURUS: Do yourself a favor and refrain from discussing finances with a neighbor or sibling who may mean well but is in no position to respond to the intricacies of what you’re handling right now. The Full Moon highlights the soul-nourishing effect of a community or fellowship with who you share a soulful bond. If you’re part of a 12-step group, check in with them. If not, treat yourself to a concert or some choral music, it’s just what the doctor ordered. This Mercury retro phase will have you rethinking your work schedule but don’t make any major adjustments till the second week in October.

GEMINI: The Full Moon and Mercury retro brings to the fore the dilemma of integrating your professional, family, and romantic life, and this is not as impossible as it seems on the surface. The important thing to keep in mind, is that those in your life who are healthy, sane, conscious, and really in our corner, give you the space to be who you are. That being said, you may be rethinking a romantic situation and are in the process of redefining what love is and means to you on a practical level. Don’t jump to any conclusions.

CANCER: Though your impatience and sense of irritation is justified, it will do you no good to demand that the world operate according to your emotional schedule- that’s a right exclusively reserved for infants under the age of one. That being said, the Mercury retrograde will surely bring up many unresolved issues between you, your siblings, and neighbors with whom you share a tight bond. The good news is, that during the course of the next few weeks, you’ll be able to settle many a score to your liking. Don’t gloat.

LEO: This Full Moon is an important one as it sheds light on and exposes the true financial state of those (people and institutions) that you are in business with and dependent on for your sustenance going forward. It will take at least the length of the Mercury retrograde (and then some) for all of the info and how you feel about it to shake out. Be patient. You’re preparing for a long cycle of power and accomplishment and you need these weeks to gather your strength and all of the facts. Observe all you can about the players involved and think in terms of how you can be of help.

VIRGO: The Labor Day Weekend doesn’t have to be that belabored if you prepare in advance for the loopy behavior of a partner or BFF: The Full Moon may highlight the fragility of your significant other or expose the insolvency of a business partner who may opt to celebrate the glories of alcoholism one drink at a time. With your ruler, Mercury, about to go retrograde, it’s important to not say anything in a group setting that you’ll regret later. For now, silence is golden. If you must spill your guts to someone, do it with an absolutely trustworthy friend.

LIBRA: Cardinal signs hate being in a holding pattern and it feels like you’ve been in one for the better part of the year. The Full Moon sheds light on what you have to do to become more functional and healthy. Implement the most manageable of those steps in small increments- and be sure that these include upgrades in your day to day diet. All will change soon and you have to get organized and be ready to go into full gear within the next couple of months.

SCORPIO: The suspicious part of nature will be tested upon hearing bits and pieces of what is being uttered behind the scenes. But know that what you’re hearing is at best partial and at worst grossly inaccurate. What was recently decided in a group setting will be revisited and revised in the next few weeks. It’s in your best interest to remain nimble and flexible and to be as diplomatic as you can. Everyone is in the same boat, as they all fear that they are not standing on firm ground. The funny thing is, though you may not feel it- you are the stabilizing force in the group.

SAGITTARIUS: In a hurry to announce some good news before it’s time, a boss, parent or an authority may speak too soon. Take what they have to say with a grain of salt and resist the temptation to act impulsively on anything that is said. Circumstances will change and do-overs will probably be necessary. Balance equal amounts of time between the needs of home/family and those of your career. You may at last become aware of some of the political conditions that have been influencing your place of work for a long time, but the moment is not quite right to do anything about it.

CAPRICORN: Though you tend to sublimate the emotional part of yourself, the Full Moon in your 3rd house of rational thought and communication strongly urges you to honor the feeling part of your nature which will enhance your effectiveness across the board. You have heard something about the importance of emotional intelligence, haven’t you? Tap into that skill this week as you deal with revising some promises you’ve made of late. The truth is, honoring those pledges are not yet within the bounds of your control, but will be in a few weeks.

AQUARIUS: The Full Moon on Friday sheds light on a complicated money issue and will help you to zero in on the best solution to a nagging $$ problem over the next few weeks. Delay signing off on the final version of this fiscal decision if you can- it will take a little time for all of the facts to present themselves. Keep the work and relationship factions of your life separate over the next few days- they’re at odds with one another. This is one time that a little bit of compartmentalization goes a long way.

PISCES: As the Labor Day holiday begins, the Full Moon in your sign may make you feel a bit raw and exposed and less inclined to participate in those ‘obligatory’ End-of-Summer gatherings. Trust your instincts, and if you’re in too sensitive a space, know that you’re well within your rights to withdraw and retreat- with no explanation necessary. The Mercury station (square Mars) and subsequent three-week retrograde points to a brief flare-up with or concerning a partner or spouse, that will subside and morph into a better and more tangible understanding if you don’t take the bait and get into a war of words.