From today through Wednesday morning (PDT) there is a really graceful alignment of planets in the sky. Five planets are either in their own signs or their signs of exaltation. This combination or “yoga” in Vedic astrology is a powerful one, and grants auspiciousness to activities undertaken during this time. Mars and Venus are in signs that they rule (Aries and Taurus, respectively), and the Sun, Moon, and Jupiter are in their signs of exaltation (Aries, Taurus, and Cancer). This means that we will find it easier to connect with our courage and strength for acting (Mars), with spirit and illuminated consciousness (Sun), with peace and contentment in our hearts (Moon), with finding happiness and beauty in life, and through compromise and relationships (Venus), and with our senses of higher purpose, hope and optimism (Jupiter). We will have five exalted or sva planets (in their own signs) again when Moon passes through his own sign, Cancer, from Friday through Sunday morning. For the next two days, however, with the Sun and Moon exalted, we are in the auspicious Hindu holy days of Akshaya Tritiya. The “tritiya” refers to the third day of the waxing moon, and each year on the third day after new Moon in Aries, both Sun and Moon are exalted (Sun in Aries and Moon in Taurus). “Akshaya” means “never diminishing” and is associated with prosperity and wealth. This is a good time for beginning both material and spiritual ventures. With Mars and Sun in Aries, we already have a lot of potency for initiating activities, and with Moon also exalted, this aligns us with our heart’s truest contentment. Moon is exalted in Taurus because the emotions are able to rest peacefully in that fixed earth sign. It is a Kapha dosha sign, which supports the emotional body because it is less prone towards restlessness and anxiety. With a full spirit and peaceful heart, and a strong connection to your strength, pleasure and purpose, do some work these days on manifesting your dreams.
Some times of day are even more potent than others for setting your goals in motion, and as well you may find this window especially graceful for activities related to the specific houses affected in your chart.
Today Mars moved into sidereal Aries, the Cardinal Fire sign it rules. Aries expresses the masculine, or extroverted, nature of Mars, so it is likely we will feel a lot of impetus to send our energies outward and start new projects in the world in the coming weeks. Mars gives us warrior strength, will, and energy, but also strong opinions and a stubborn ego at times. You may find yourself encountering potential anger or arguments over principles that feel very black-and-white to you. Try to slow down and consider the affects before acting or arguing, even though you may be feeling very impulsive. We are still in an eclipse period, so with all the subconscious and emotional matter that is getting stirred up to the surface, make sure to align your energetic pursuits with what is really serving. This alignment does bring a strength that will support the new endeavors we aspire to accomplish this year, but planets in Aries do not change direction easily, so be aware that whatever propulsion you set yourself into may be the one you follow for a while. It’s a good time to get exercising again, or to call in discipline to your yogic pursuits.
Mars is now aspecting retrograde Jupiter and Saturn from his new position. This could give a boost of energy to how you are processing our studies and philosophies (retrograde Jupiter), so also watch out for getting argumentative over these, fighting with teachers, or the complete destruction of principles you have held close in the past but have reconsidered lately. If this is truly for your highest good, the energy could be a great service, as we are in the final two weeks of Jupiter’s retrograde course, and may be finalizing the expulsion of bad ideas in our philosophical reanalysis. Try to take things as slowly as possible, however, before destroying something in a moment of passion.
Mars is now both aspecting and ruling Saturn, who is retrograde in Scorpio. Saturn’s position here is giving us a sense of responsibility and commitment to facing deep fears and hidden parts of ourselves. Mars’ position in Aries will activate this process even more, bringing energy and willingness to that sense of commitment. It could be a good time to start practices that empower this process, like trauma release exercises and ones to deconstruct limiting beliefs. Saturn is in the nakshatra Anuradha, which supports exploring our sensitivities and also seeking cooperation in friendships.
This is important especially because Mars is joining Venus here in Aries, which could present a dichotomy of conflict within us. Venus is the planet of compromise, and agreeability, while Mars works to support our personal survival and instincts with an animalistic tendency. Venus in Aries has trouble compromising, therefore, and we may have been noticing this since his movement here from Pisces on the 12th. It can bring up passionate feelings about whether our compromises are fair or not. With Mars joining this already high-strung Venus, take extra care with your relationships. Use Mars’ rulership of and aspect on Saturn in Scorpio to turn that fervor inward. Mars and Venus are with the Moon in Aries until tonight, so we may feel this dichotomy especially intensely in our emotional bodies today. Mars’ new position will have more specific effects on the houses it is influencing in your individual chart, and the themes they represent in your life.
Today is also the fourth day of Navaratri, so we turn our celebration and worship to the goddess Laxmi, the embodiment of spiritual and material prosperity. Worshiping her qualities such as happiness, grace, wisdom, devotion, and purity, can help bring these about. This will support the higher potential of Mars, which is the strength and courage to be disciplined with ourselves and our inner and outer energies, rather than reckless like a wild animal. Laxmi’s four hands represents the four objects of human pursuit in life (the Purusharthas)–dharma, artha, kama, and moksha (living a truthful life, material prosperity, happiness, and spiritual liberation). Use Mars’ energy to strengthen your yogic objectives as you give homage to the goddess, pursuing a harmonious existence.
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Happy Navaratri! Today begins the Hindu holiday of the “Nine Nights” that celebrate Devi, the Divine Mother Goddess, in her many forms. Two major Navaratri celebrations happen each year with the change of seasons, in March/April, bringing in the spring, and in September/October, celebrating the harvest and preparing for winter. This Navaratri begins on the first day of the lunar month Chaitra, the first month of the Vedic calendar year. The goddess represents the “Shakti” or divine energy that is the vehicle through which we experience life in order to know “Shiva,” representing the divine consciousness behind it all, and so we celebrate her. For three nights each we worship the goddess in the forms of Durga, Laxmi, and Sarasvati. These goddesses represent the stages we must go through on our spiritual journey to reach the state of pure consciousness bliss. Durga is often known as the “demon-slayer.” This symbolizes the demons or negative tendencies of our minds that we must destroy in order to move forward in life with peace in the heart and mind, as well as the external obstacles we must overcome. Laxmi is known as the goddess of wealth or prosperity. This represents not just material wealth, but a spiritual wealth we seek to acquire in the form of virtues, or positive qualities, like compassion and devotion. Sarasvati, riding a swan, the highest-flying bird and vehicle for prana (the breath and life force that sustains us), represents the higher knowledge that can be attained after we purify ourselves, as well as all kinds of knowledge that we study and practice in our service. The divine truth realized through these three (through different forms of spiritual practice) is indeed the peace and oneness of pure consciousness bliss. Navaratri is a good time to practice yoga, meditation, and rituals to bring about divine-mother qualities in ourselves and in the world. Especially with the chaotic energies that are accompanying the solar eclipse of today, focusing on spiritual practices and mindfulness is especially important in the coming days. Allow the demons to be destroyed, and call upon your higher qualities to attain peace and lightness within yourself, and then let it spread to others so all of creation can be uplifted in harmony.
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