by Heather Roan Robbins
Triskaidekaphilias unite; happy Friday the 13th. This tricky week only coincidentally begins with Friday the 13th. We need to keep our eyes open for pianos falling from the sky, and need to deal with people as if the zombie apocalypse might break out (even if it probably won’t) at any moment in an otherwise calm, lovely and friendly week.
Need to talk to an old friend? Great. Ready to tackle a long-postponed project? Learn a traditional dance? Take a restful vacation? Wonderful. Mercury retrogrades for the next few weeks complicates the way we communicate, think, and move through the world but helps us rest, look within, complete, retrospect, and reconnect.
Mercury retrograde can also bring in a coyote quality. We can expect the unexpected and need to ask tough questions. Ordinary tasks can become slapstick events, like trying to step over the dog without tripping or getting the printer to work right before an important meeting. Some deep misconceptions can be revealed and healed. Mercury retrograde by itself is not usually dangerous, it’s just call to pay attention, stay present, and keep our sense of humor nearby.
But another tricky aspect brings us back this year’s core work and brings in another layer of danger and technical challenge. Mars (albeit in a sign it’s usually weak, Libra) moves into an energizing but potentially friction-filled or combative T-square with Uranus and Pluto. While this T-square stirs our restlessness but encourages most of us to avoid conflict, for some it cranks up the level of depression, anxiety, or aggression.
With this combination, if we’re lucky and channel it well, we can face our life with fresh confidence, or be able to really look at the cause of our own mood swings. Our energy can be high and our mood enthusiastic if we’ve got some place to go and some introspection to do. But the combination of restlessness, frayed nerves and Mercury-retrograde carelessness can make it tricky. Unthoughtful aggression and unusual bravado with unexpected consequences will unfold very differently in the Brazilian World Cup soccer versus the military showdown in Mosul, Iraq, or at the corner bar.
We need to be extra patient and extra clear with one another. Firmly hold our ground if our situation gets stormy. Play it extra safe near any machinery. Mars in Libra challenges us to stay calm and loving even in a difficult situation, and even with ourselves, as this combination can stimulate a review of our mistakes.
Mars was near this point in April (opposed Uranus, square Pluto, square Jupiter) then retrograded back and now hits this T-square again for the whole month of June. Political and personal problems that come up now have probably been brewing in one form or the other the last few months, and it will help to look back and know their history. This activating T-square with Pluto and Uranus pushes us to get on with it, get on with a problem, project, confrontation or challenge that started earlier this spring, may have had a dénouement or dramatic event in April, and now push for resolution.
If our group, our family, country, or organization is dealing with a challenge together, it can be hard — but essential — to keep the personal anxiety under control, avoid the blame game, and keep the group working towards a common goal.
Mars also symbolically rules engineering and mechanics, and so while this may be an ingenious and brilliant time, great for tinkering with engines or electrical equipment, our ingenuity may be sparked by odd malfunctions of worn-out parts. Remember the vast majority of machines will work just fine, without a hitch, but as Mars perfect its square to Pluto this weekend, let’s not push people or machines if we can possibly help it. Give them another try a few days later.
Moon in Capricorn this weekend lets us get down to work around history, tradition, mechanical events; we need to get work done as Saturn trines Chiron. We also may feel the need to be appreciated for efforts and for the wisdom we’ve accrued from our experiences, including those who are three and have just learned to walk.
Be careful around an urge to manipulate on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday as Mars exactly squares Pluto. It will be tempting to maneuver other people to relieve some urgency in our own solar plexus. Let’s see if we can sit with the discomfort and listen to the deeper lesson instead. But do not let manipulative people have their way. It won’t help to escalate the problem, as it will escalate faster and hotter than expected; redirect where possible, and hold firmly where necessary.
Early next week we need to work the community as the Moon enters sociable Aquarius and Mercury retrogrades back into verbal Gemini. If nervous energy causes people to speak injudiciously, let’s forgive the slip of the tongue and keep the conversation flowing. If we feel anxiety creeping up, it’s just a little extra voltage to the nerves; we can listen to one thing at a time and acknowledge the energy itself, rather than believe the story. We need to stay curious and look for the truth rather than repeat misinformation.
Lovely Venus sextiles generous Jupiter midweek, warms our hearts and leaves us in a tender, more compassionate place. We can feel swamped, unusually sensitive to the emotional soup that we swim in, so let’s notice the feelings around us, let them flow through us, and remember our solid core underneath. Find a fun way to be sensitive and use this extra awareness to breathe in the beauty of the season. If called to an act of radical compassion, honor the call.
Friday, June 13: When at rest will tend to stay at rest, it will take an act of will to get moving but then we can accomplish. We may want to accomplish a lot under an ambitious Capricorn Moon but can run into tangles if we push; we need to edit our choices carefully and make progress where there is least resistance. Let’s listen and treat each other with respect, walk side-by-side instead of elbow ahead. Tender feelings can get side swept by events during the day, but the room clears for more personal engagement by dinner time. Tiredness or dour energy lingers in the evening; it won’t improve by dissection, we just have to hold hands and walk together anyway.
Saturday, June 14: Pushy, pushy, pushy; this could be a rough day as Mars perfects it square to Pluto and the Moon conjuncts Pluto. We can micromanage under stress, so use willfulness with care. Any accomplishment made by moral shortcuts will probably be reversed in the long. Be helpful, but don’t impose help; work with people rather than try to save them. Old emotions and frustrations can come up, mechanical difficulties can arise, so can concerns about whether we’re enough or have done enough. But all of this can be fodder for productive work if we let it inspire us. A real emergency could bring out our best; we have less tolerance for trivia but more capacity for real compassion. Let’s be safe, sane, and remember how competent we are. Evening flows with more kindness and appreciation as the Moon trine Venus.
Sunday, June 15: Let this be a healing, renewing morning as the Moon wanders void of course around until lunchtime, not much else will get done. Afternoon the Moon enters more communal Aquarius for more dynamic gatherings; the quality of our interaction matters more than the content. People may be a bit disjointed or odd. Our place in the group, our responsibility to the people may take precedence over individual relationships.
Monday, June 16: Revisit some old problem and see if a new solution and be found. People get touchy when they feel they have to watch their back, they can read our energy more than our words, so let’s own up to our attitude. We want to trust people will do what they say they will do, so be careful to agree to a minimum, even when feeling generous, but follow through on anything agreed-upon. Later, we may have to work together even when we’d rather work apart; collaboration furthers.
Tuesday, June 17: Nerviness can make us talkative as Mercury retrogrades back into Gemini, but do we really have anything to say. Watch out for opinions which pass fact, or strange gossip. Yes we need to process, no we do not need to project our misunderstandings, but our nervousness can come out our mouth. The rhythm is staccato, interrupted, but communicative with the potential for a breakthrough understanding about a past event. We may feel more raw and tender and need extra sleep or psychic insulation later as the Moon enters Pisces.
Wednesday, June 18: The mood is tender, touchy, creative, and nonlinear. The heart tells the truth as Venus sextiles Jupiter, but our words may be all mixed up. Moods drift through like flotsam down a swollen river. Read body language, project warmth under the sensitive Pisces Moon. Ask not what your beloveds can do for you but what you can do for them. Reel in emotional expectations, they can make a self-focused and bitter, but will feel good to be of service. In the evening a situation may arrive that could go either way; be brave take it towards healing, instead of re-inscribing the problem, as the Moon conjuncts Chiron.
Thursday, June 19: Morning brings generosity as long as our feelings aren’t hurt, the Moon trines Jupiter. But we may feel spread too thin or frazzled this afternoon as the Moon squares the Sun, so don’t tax us unnecessarily; be cooperative, self-responsible, and leave demands for later. Independence with an attitude kicks in as the Moon enters Aries tonight. Tales start to twitch; watch the sharp edges and snappy comebacks. Both weather and politics can get stormy. Enjoy spontaneous adventures or a call of spirit, but look before leaping.
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