Welcome to the Karmic Crunch, the three weeks when we can lose 100 pounds of baggage! Although we hate lost luggage, baggage is another thing. Something we’ve been carrying around for at least three years — or maybe several lifetimes — is now up for release. The question is, can we do it? And what will that feel like?
Learn more about the Karmic Crunch on The Astrologer’s Daughter Radio Show Friday July 24, 1 pm PT.
We have four things going on right now: (Don’t worry about the technical bits, just focus on the dates and ‘what it means’ if you’re blinded by the science.)
The first is the Venus retrograde, which we’ve been feeling for at least a week. She’s been slowing down, grinding to an apparent halt as she rounds the bend of her orbit, getting ready to zoom across the face of the Sun on its Earth-facing side. She has been spectacularly interacting with Jupiter as she rises into the Western sky after sunset, but now, slowed to a crawl, she has begun her fall back into the Sun.
Venus officially turns retrograde on Saturday (tomorrow) July 25, but that’s splitting hairs. She will move “backward” through the Zodiac for 44 days, returning to forward motion on September 6. During that time, she returns to Leo on July 31, where she will remain until October 8.
Between July 18 and 31, Venus is in Virgo and activating the powers of the star Regulus in our lives. This is especially significant because Regulus has just crossed the boundary into Virgo after several thousand years in the Sign of Leo. It signals a major shift in our way of understanding and valuing the use the power. Now the power is handed over to the feminine — or those carrying the feminine qualities — of compassion, nurturance, and mercy. The power is given via subtle universal forces to those who wield these qualities, rather than those who rely on force and authority — gentle persuasion and rehabilitation over judgment and punishment. (We can see this in the movement toward rehabilitation of those committing crimes, and the restorative movement in education — seeing children who act out as children in need of support.)
The questions that arise from Venus (with Jupiter and Regulus) are: How do I need to change my relationships with others to allow me to be my true self? How can I remove judgment and authority from my life? How can I free myself of anything that separates me from love? How can I serve — what is my cause for the better of my community?
#2: Full Mercury. On Thursday (July 23), we reached the halfway point in the Mercury cycle that began May 30. This is a peak of insight as we stand back from our life and evaluate what’s happened since then. Do our actions stand up to our current understanding? Can we forgive ourselves and others?
#3: The Venus-Mars conjunction. Underneath, all of this is about relationships. The people we have collected around us are those with whom we share an agreement to work something out, even if it is uncomfortable or inconvenient. We started a long working out process in June 2012, and we will continue this throughout our life as we search for and develop our relationship with our Divine Companion/Counterpart. This person reflects our worst qualities back to us as well as our best, so it’s not an easy road, but it is the worthy one. On August 31, we reach the second of three conjunctions between these planets of love, sex, and courtship, and this is already in play. It will be more intensely activated during the Karmic Crunch, the hidden issue that no one is talking about but sits in the back of our mind driving every action and decision. This will come to the forefront in August, especially during the Karmic Crunch. (See my blog entries previous to this for the details.)
#4: The squares to Saturn — The Karmic Crunch
Saturn has been lurking in the background (or wreaking havoc in the foreground for some) since its return to Scorpio on June 14. However, we began to feel the crunchiness around July 13, when Venus made her first (of 3) squares to Saturn. Tied with other events of that week, it cracked open some situations for healing.
While seeds were planted then, the real Crunch is from July 23 – August 21, with a peak from July 31 – August 7.
What have I been dying to change but haven’t been able to? Where do I need to bite the bullet and let go of a cherished idea? What feels right, takes me to my center? If I open my heart, where does it take me?
What Does This Mean to Us?
We can get in touch with the meaning of all this by understanding more about the themes suggested by these planets and their Sign placements:
Leo is about love and finding our center. Even though we are tied to others and thrive on those connections, we are the center of our own universe. Once we find our True Center — the Soul — we operate from that center in harmony with all beings and circumstances (even if it feels uncomfortable). We do what is right and affirming for the highest good, because we are experiencing love when we do it. We must discover our inner dignity, self-acceptance, and -respect to be in harmony with others. This is the lesson of Leo — to discover and come from the place of our self-sovereignty. It is only then that we will recognize ourselves for who We really Are — our true magnificence — so that we can step into our true role of service on the planet.
Scorpio tells us where we have to let go of what is old and outworn, no matter how it feels. You know what it is, and you know it’s the right thing. You may just resist doing it, even now that all the evidence is in. But you know what? You’re going to do it anyway, and it’s the best thing.
The Virgo/Regulus theme is guiding us to begin to live a life in true leadership. A true King or Queen is a steward of his/her domain, not a star. It is not about golden wealth but about wealth in community. The question is not how can I rule, but how can I serve?
The feminine (and its virtues) are on the rise. This does not necessarily mean women, but women have been forced to be the exclusive embodiment/carriers of these virtues, and all who carry them will rise. Men who carry them — the Dalai Lama, Barack Obama, Joss Whedon, Judd Apatow — will also rise.
Getting rid of baggage is often difficult. We have gotten so used to carrying it, we don’t even know it’s there. It feels like a part of us. Yet we see the obstacles the baggage creates in the form of the job we’re afraid to leave, the conflict we’re afraid to bring up.
How Can We Make the Most of These Energies?
- Listen to our inner guidance.
- Take time out to explore our inner landscape (give up busy-ness = modern epidemic).
- Find the thing you need to give up and let it go (this may be more than one thing).
- Know that you will make it through, no matter how difficult it is.
- Know that if it’s right for you, it has to work for others as well, no matter how you might imagine that they feel. If we don’t step into the truth and challenge our relationships, we’ll never know who that other person really is. They may surprise you with their ability to change. It lifts us all to find our center and move into alignment with divine harmony, even if it feels awful at first. That’s just scraping the baggage off where it got stuck to us.
- Give up alienation. Alienation is about holding ourselves separate from those things we might otherwise connect to, often because someone has asserted authority over us or because we don’t think we deserve it.
- Trust that all this is happening for a reason, even if we don’t understand it. In fact, it would be impossible to understand much of it at this point. Give up guilt over involving others — or over anything. We are human and have the right (and responsibility) to learn from our mistakes.
Underneath alienation is a judgment we have accepted as true about us. It feels yucky. We feel isolated, alone, unloved, unlovable. Why would we want to feel like that? Why should we accept that? It doesn’t make us feel better. Remove the judgment and the alienation. Look at the facts. Look at where the judgment comes from. Somewhere in there is the seed of love. No matter what, no matter how wounded it appears, it all comes from love. Everything comes from love, even if it comes in the form of twisted, anguished aggression. While this does not mean that we should withstand violence or harm in any way, when we give up alienation and judgment and bring love to the table, all situations are improved. Perhaps most importantly, we feel better and the world becomes a better place with each heart that is opened.
We don’t have to hop on the bandwagon with someone who projects negative emotions into the atmosphere. We don’t owe it to anyone to be isolated and imprisoned in a cage of someone else’s feelings about us. We can love them and if necessary leave them (or at least get out of the blast zone). When we find our true inner Leo, the love we feel in our heart becomes a beacon in the darkness of separation and indifference. This becomes easier if we remember that it always comes from love, however misunderstood or misused.