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What are we doing when we do astrology?

Dear Friend and Reader:

Before I dive into this Capricorn Full Moon week's aspects (posted below, if you're in a hurry), I have a question: What are we doing when we do astrology?

Eric Francis
Astrology is two different things depending on whether you're doing some of the direct interpretation yourself, or following the work of others. If you love astrology, I encourage you to develop a direct relationship with it, in terms of hearing the calling and deepening your study. A good way to start that deepening process can be as simple as keeping a notebook. The only printed resource you will need at first is a pocket ephemeris, such as Raphael's or Jim Maynard's. And you will need your own chart.

However, most people find astrologers with whom they resonate, and keep coming back to them for interpretations.

In either case, we all bring our own material to the astrology; the astrologer tells a story, we have a story we come with and the two together become what we think of as the "meaning" of what comes across. Good astrology writing needs to be descriptive and specific enough to be evocative, but open-ended enough to allow you full space for your own trip (I call this quality ‘elliptical', referring to the theatrical exercise of actors reading a script with no meaning, but giving it meaning through their performance.)

It is true that every horoscope column you read is different because each astrologer doing the interpretation has a different point of view. Many people are surprised to find out that there is no objective interpretation to a planetary alignment; it is all subjective, as in highly subjective: astrology is based natural phenomena, but the interpretation is based on the astrologer's context and point of view.

The process of getting to know each planet and each aspect, and of acquiring the aspect sensitivity that allows intuition to provide the necessary (hopefully original) ideas to convey, is deeply personal. Each of those planets — yes, dozens of them, in the case of a minor planet astrologer — represents an inner archetype that the astrologer lives with; that each astrologer lives with and relates to. So when you read my interpretations, you are getting a window into my relationship with myself. This is another way of saying you get a window into, and a sample of, my relationship to existence.

Because I am doing this for the public, broadcasting sometimes on a massive scale (there have been days when I've had upwards of 5 million readers, such as when covering for Jonathan Cainer), I try to process the material fully and give the most basic logic and clearest intuition of my inner reasoning process. But lest anyone mistake astrology for truth, I thought I would remind you of this situation. You are basically getting one of two things: either the regurgitated interpretations that the astrologer has learned (that is when the astrology seems flat and boring) and a sample of their inner condition when it seems more vivid and potent.

That does not necessarily make it functional. You can just as easily pick up on where someone is in conflict with themselves as when someone is in harmony or experiencing growth. In those interpretations, you get all their ideas, and more meaningfully, their emotions, about whether the world is a fair place; whether love is worth it; how you set yourself free from the mental and circumstantial traps that seem to surround us everywhere.

It is similar when I am working with clients one on one. Only the connection is in real time, which increases the energy flow and the speed of karmic processing. And I have the opportunity to respond to the person I'm talking with directly, on every level, and direct my feedback specifically. Yet here the state of mind, philosophy of life and inner resonance issues are even more crucial, because in that 75 minute session, both the client and I are making decisions about existence — right in that moment.

Even if it's on a smaller scale, the same is true with a weekly summary or a weekly horoscope. We are all taking in data and making decisions about existence.

At the moment I am sitting in the cafe near my studio where I work, and whose wifi signal (and coffee cups) I borrow — Dominick's Cafe in Kingston — and Marie, the Manager sat down at my table. She said, "I'm 38 years old. I've lived in this bubble of being scared all my life. I woke up yesterday morning and said to myself, ‘What am I doing? Why do I want to stay stuck'?"

These are the moments we are waiting for, and the truth is we don't need astrology for them. But if we apply astrology judiciously, with love and care, we can get some excellent or at least useful results.

Currently the Moon is in Sagittarius, and we are close to the Full Moon; this happens shortly after the Moon enters Capricorn later in the week.

14 Monday: Sun is trine Uranus today, and opens doors and opportunities that may be unusually innovative, especially for the water signs. This aspect happens twice a year: once with the Sun in Cancer and once with he Sun in Scorpio. Mercury in Cancer is sextile Saturn in Virgo, giving leverage to communication and making effort efficient. This is a nice blend of emotional and intellectual. Mercury is trine Chariklo, another way of saying we can express our needs and talk to one another honestly about dependency issues. Venus is trine Hylonome. And Apollo is opposite Chiron. See your old patterns, particularly in relationships, and find your freedom from them. You can figure out what you've been doing over and over, and do something else; preferably something more efficient and fun.

15 Tuesday: Mercury sextiles Mars, and Sun semisquare Mars. This is a combination of leverage and propulsion. Mercury is sesquiquadrate Neptune, which highlights the sometimes fine line between truth and lies. In my original draft, I wrote, "Beware of someone who offers to wash your car but who really wants to steal your hubcaps. Do cars have hubcaps anymore?" I guess some of them still do. I would revise that interpretation to say: look at the motives for what might get you to be more or less truthful in any given situation.

16 Wednesday: Moon enters Capricorn at 12:20 am and the full phase of the Moon begins. Moon trine Saturn (Earth sign to Earth sign
0. Mercury is square Arachne. It's true — everything on this planet is a conspiracy; you have to get in on it if you want to take advantage of it. Sun is square 1992 QB1, which I call Radharani. More on her another time, but note — the Full Moon is a square of both the Sun and Moon to Radha.

17 Thursday: Venus square Chariklo. Venus square Vesta. Venus square Hidalgo. This is provocative and potentially emotionally tumultuous, bringing personal interests into a potential values conflict with service (Chariklo and Vesta), and the need to rebel against pointless social norms (Hidalgo). Just in time for a big fat Full Moon in Capricorn, which is overnight.

18 Friday: Capricorn Full Moon at 3:39 am EDT. Moon enters Aquarius at 11:40 am EDT. We all need to understand the angle in our chart where we have Capricorn. This is because Capricorn helps us negotiate the line between commitment and individuality; between obligation and respect for tradition. Eris stations retrograde. Pallas is square Neptune. You may get the feeling that it's a great day to file fraudulent legal paperwork; but be advised, it will backfire, and you will be ordered to cover costs. This is a simple way of saying, openly take responsibility for what you've done, and make small payments if necessary.

19 Saturday: Venus square Asbolus. Love is not a game of "Survivor," it is a process of getting to know ourselves honestly. Mercury is opposite Jupiter; Ceres opposite Jupiter. Still under the momentum of yesterday's Full Moon, this can have a lot of emotional charge to it, and that charge may be informed (for example) by the grief that your ancestors experienced, but to which you have not assigned a name.

20 Sunday: Moon conjunct Chiron. Moon conjunct North Node. Moon is occult Neptune. In recent months these have all been significant, somewhat strange days; again the emphasis is on truth above all other values. Moon enters Pisces at 9:08 pm EDT.

Yours & truly,
Eric Francis

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