Planetary Trends for August 2018

Belinda Dunn

What’s Up! by Belinda C. Dunn

Leo Solar Eclipse – August 11  @  5:58 am
Mercury Direct – August 19  @  12:25 am
Pisces/Virgo Full Moon – August 26  @  7:56 am

August begins with five retrograde planets (Mercury, Mars, Saturn, Neptune, Pluto), and another preparing to go retrograde on August 7 (Uranus). The very word retrograde brings to mind the necessity for review. Every now and then, life offers the opportunity to back up, take stock, release and complete what has already been set in motion. If you have been feeling overwhelmed with the weightiness of current events, personally and collectively, this is the month to catch your breath, catch up, and in many cases, make some very profound decisions.

On August 1, Mars comes into stressful alignment with Uranus, the game changer planet. Due to its retrograde phase, Mars already joined forces with Uranus mid-May. This planetary combination is known as one of the most rebellious influences for humankind. In general, any areas of life where people feel boxed in, limited and defeated by circumstances, there may be a feeling there is nothing to lose by taking extreme action to break free. This can lead to explosive and unpredictable reactions.

On a personal level, this planetary combination can bring clarity to conditions that may have been inhibiting productive and effective action. All of a sudden, people will be waking up, and knowing where they truly stand in regard to a multitude of issues. This is not a wishy-washy, lukewarm influence. It is a strong, powerful statement from the universe about freedom, including taking the blinders off and meeting life in an effective and realistic way. This process cannot be rushed, and the grand finale is mid-September as Mars squares Uranus for the third and final time this year.

The current Mercury retrograde phase started on July 25/26, and continues to August 18/19. When Mercury appears to be marching backwards through the zodiac sky there is a general need for integration of recent events. Trying to force resolution can be met with resistance, frustration, detours and misguided efforts. It’s just not time to make sweeping resolutions. It’s time to gather the facts, and entertain guidance.

This particular Mercury retrograde phase is further strengthened by its repeated activation on the exact degree of the Leo Solar Eclipse on August 11. Amplifying the plethora of information coming to the surface, this is a time of revelation. Dark secrets are slowly but surely coming into the light of day. August 8, a few days before the Solar Eclipse, the Sun joins Mercury. This is always an important part of any Mercury retrograde phase. This is when the solar will of Source is made known to the conscious, everyday mind of humanity.

This month’s solar eclipse mirrors “The Great American Eclipse” on August 21, 2017. Part of a larger trend, these eclipses activate fundamental lessons around the issues of effective leadership and group synergy. Highlighting this dynamic interplay, a variety of leadership styles have been on display on the national and international stages.

The age-old, taken for granted, programmed  dynamic of “power over” OR “power under” is out of balance as the collective consciousness moves into the more refined and uplifting vibrations of the Aquarian Age. New choices are being made as to what it means to be a leader, and what it means to be led.

Venus is a significant moderating and harmonizing influence this month. On August 6, Venus enters Libra, the zodiac sign of diplomacy, cooperation, mediation and partnership. Individuals, as well as nations, will be on the lookout for key alliances, actively taking steps to cultivate supportive connections. This can mean that some relationships reach a point of no return, falling apart to come together in a new, upgraded form at some point down the road.

Signaling it’s time to move forward with clarity and good intentions, Mercury the messenger goes direct on August 19. Contributing to a sense of positive momentum, a profound dose of grace blesses this day as Jupiter is in harmonious alignment with Neptune for the third and final time since December 2017. Both of these planets aim to uplift and soften the harsh blows of temporal life circumstances. Offering faith and inspiration, these planets work together to illuminate the bigger picture above and beyond the grasp of limited perspective.

By August 23, the Sun leaves playful, dramatic and intense Leo, and enters the next zodiac sign of Virgo. Summer vacations are winding down. Diligent, thoughtful and service oriented Virgo welcomes the return to school and work. Shortly thereafter, A full moon dawns on August 26. With Sun in Virgo and Moon in the opposite zodiac sign of Pisces, this lunation promises to be a spectacular sight for early risers.

Each zodiac sign is aligned with an element; fire, air, water, earth. Associated with the earth element, Virgo brings a practical, realistic, down to earth approach to daily life. The full moon astrology chart shows a prominent emphasis on the earth element. One of the most stabilizing and fortunate of planetary influences is coming together in an earth grand trine between Sun in Virgo, Saturn in Capricorn and Uranus in Taurus.

Just in the nick of time, especially in the wake of summer’s three eclipses, this earth grand trine helps to sooth tensions, and allay fears. In some ways, it may feel like a thud down to earth. All of a sudden, people will have an opportunity to get with the program. Reliable routines come into place, and there is a sigh of relief as the way forward is more apparent.

Saturn is the planet of existing foundations, and Uranus is the planet of progress. Many times, these forces can be at odds with each other. However, in this case, they work together to realistically implement strategies and systems to overcome hurdles. Having a track to run on provides stability in this era of accelerated and unprecedented change.

Another turning point comes on August 27 as Mars completes a nine week retrograde phase, and begins to march forward once again. For several months, the natural and normal disposition of Mars has been thwarted. As the planet of action, Mars retrograde slows things down, presenting a variety of challenges that need to be addressed in order to effectively move forward.

As this powerhouse of a planet goes direct, it rises above the horizon. For the remainder of the year, Mars will be dramatically visible in the evening sky. Additionally, Mars is orbiting out of bounds of the celestial equator. This is quite rare for a planet to reach beyond its north or south declination.

The term “out of bounds” was given by astrologer B.T. Boehrer. Research shows that when a planet is out of bounds it represents the possibility of crossing the line of socially accepted behavior. Spanning the extremes of criminality to genius, a celestial body out of bounds is a potent force. In this case, Mars out of bounds is testing the limits of reality according to the status quo.

An enormous paradigm shift is taking place, perhaps invisible to most people. For those individuals attuned to more subtle energies, it is quite apparent as the past seems to be falling away to make room for what’s next. Contributing to this shift is the fact that Mars started its retrograde phase in the zodiac sign of Aquarius, and goes direct in Capricorn. Additionally, Mars activates the south lunar node in Aquarius three times (June 14, July 18, September 22).

One of the most potent symbols for Mars is the surgeon’s knife that cuts away disease to allow healing to take place. In this case, Mars in Aquarius is a major wake up call for the collective consciousness. Due to technology, the shear volume of input on a daily basis is staggering, and each individual has a choice to engage with information as conditioned by their peer/social group or consciously participate in a way that requires sincere, eyes wide open inquiry.

The downside of Aquarius energy is to depersonalize, and detach from reality. The hypnotic effect of technology adds to this tendency. This is not an optimal and effective response at this point. The Leo Solar Eclipse along with the north lunar node in Leo is calling for active engagement, thinking outside the box, and personal integrity. Our Sun, as center of the solar system, is continuously radiating life sustaining light which translates into human nature as warm, caring and ebullient heart expression.

Mars will remain out of bounds until the Autumnal Equinox on September 22. As Mars picks up momentum over the autumn months, many challenges will naturally resolve, but keep in mind that August is the month to stand strong, and consciously cultivate resilience and forbearance. In this dimension of shape shifting form and transitory conditions, truly, this too shall pass.

Belinda C. Dunn is a professional astrologer with over 40 years experience. She is available for your personal consultation.;