We have a rare synchronicity in the first half of May: three planets turning retrograde within four days! These include Jupiter, Saturn and – most important – Venus. We also have a Scorpio Full Moon and a committed partnership Grand Trine!
This forecast covers the most important astrological events. Would you like my interpretations of other astrological events in this time frame? Then check out my award-winning This Week in Astrology audio podcast and my YouTube video forecasts — updated weekly!
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Scorpio Full Moon
A Full Moon illuminates the early morning US sky at 6:45 AM EDT (17°20′ Scorpio). Any Scorpio Full Moon is good for adjustment or release in lots of juicy areas:
- shared resources
- occult practices
- sacred sex
- death and rebirth
- shadow work
Taurean Mercury opposes the Moon, opening the door for dialogue… especially in practical matters. Take time to think through what you’re communicating, and take all the time you need to say it.
A Scorpio Moon already feels things intensely. This lunation’s Moon-Neptune trine can take your empathic sensitivity to the next level.
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The Moon’s final aspect is a tight Vesta quincunx. What adjustment is needed so you can contribute more meaningfully to a worthy cause that serves others?
This Full Moon’s Sabian Symbol is, “A quiet path through woods brilliant in autumn coloring.” This image suggests that we can see life’s beauty more vividly when we’re calm.
The universe operates on the principle of, “As within, so without”. If you cultivate equanimity within yourself, the external events of your life become more peaceful. Once you achieve a deep enough spiritual awareness, you can even realize that everything is perfect – even in the midst of a pandemic!
This sounds like lunacy until you reach a certain level of awakening … at which point it becomes obvious. The “woods brilliant in autumn coloring” can represent a heightened, blissful perception of reality. If you want to experience what I’m talking about, I once again suggest my free, fast-acting Embodied Awakening Invocation.
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Committed Partnership Grand Trine Begins
Practical, diplomatic communication within a committed partnership is supported by a Grand Trine that begins today (5/10), peaks on 5/13 and ends on 5/17. It includes Mercury, Juno, Pallas Athena and Saturn.
Mercury, dignified in its own sign of Gemini, is primed to share information. Strategic Pallas Athena, closely conjunct practical Saturn, can help you negotiate skillfully (Pallas) so that everyone’s practical needs (Saturn) are met.
Juno focuses this Grand Trine’s meaning into committed partnership. She’s even in Libra, the sign of relationship!
Grand Trines create an easy flow. But they’re also lazy, and only give so much for free. To get the best possible outcome, “mine the trine” with focused intention.
You don’t often see three planets turning retrograde within four days! This rare synchronicity starts today (5/11) with Saturn turning retrograde, followed by Venus on 5/13 and Jupiter on 5/14. For the moment, we’ll focus on Saturn.
Saturn turns retrograde at 1°57′ Aquarius. He’ll turn direct again in about about 4-1/2 months, on 9/29, at 25°20′ Capricorn. When a planet’s retrograde, it’s a great time to reflect on how you can best partner with it.
Saturn gets a bad rap in ancient astrology – he’s even call the “Great Malefic”! But Saturn actually has all sorts of awesome qualities that you can embody.
Would you like to be more mature and responsible? Do you want to excel at planning and implementation, and make the best use of your time? Do you want to manage things well, and eventually become a Wise Elder? Then Saturn’s your guy!
To be fair, Saturn can also be frustrating. He can be the speed bumps that slow you down, the detour that forces you to take a longer route, or the roadblock that stops you in your tracks.
Fortunately, we live in a purposeful universe. Like all planets, Saturn works first and foremost for your higher self. He knows your soul mission. If he runs interference with you, he has a good reason.
One possibility is that he’s trying to discourage you from doing something that doesn’t serve your highest good. Alternatively, he’s offering you a necessary challenge. This lets you prove that you’re ready to advance to a new level of growth or accomplishment. No worthwhile hero’s journey is complete without initiations!
Sometimes it can be hard to tell whether you should persevere or set a different course. Your mind, sly trickster that it is, can often make a good argument either way. When I’m indecisive, I go with my gut. I let my intuition make the call.
This isn’t a Saturnian technique. Saturn doesn’t comprehend anything beyond the physical realm. But my experience, along with the hundreds of clients I’ve asked about this, have confirmed that intuitive knowledge is as good as it gets. What better source of information could you possibly have than your own divine self? After all, it created you in the first place, and always knows your optimal course of action.
I’ve never regretted following my intuitive guidance. When I’ve had regrets, it was because I didn’t follow my inner voice more quickly!
Saturn begins his retrograde on 5/11 in Aquarius. About six weeks later, he backpedals into Capricorn on 7/1. He stays in Capricorn for the remaining three months of his retrograde.
Even though Aquarius and Capricorn have radically different meanings, Saturn rules them both. He’s the only ruler of Capricorn, and the ancient ruler of Aquarius. This means that you can reap different contemplative benefits from these two parts of Saturn’s retrograde.
With Saturn retrograde in Aquarius 5/11 through 6/30, consider how your structures and habits support your expression as a unique, individuated person. Are you putting your intuitive flashes into practical, effective action? Are you managing your life so that you’re serving others with your special talents that you most love to use?
With Saturn backpedaling through Capricorn 7/1 through 9/29, we return to the core meanings of Saturn I mentioned earlier. How are you doing in the following areas?
- time management
- planning and implementation
- being the Wise Elder
Retrograde periods are ideal for contemplation and planning, while direct periods are optimal for action. But 4-1/2 months is a long time. If you get actionable insights on any of the themes I’ve discussed while Saturn is retrograde, feel free to implement them as soon as it’s appropriate!
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Some Retrogrades are More Important Than Others
“This time it’s personal.” These are good words to remember when evaluating the relative importance of planetary retrogrades. This is also a timely consideration, since we currently have one personal planet and two social planets going retrograde within four days of each other.
Fortunately, we have the basic principles of natal interpretation to guide us. The personal planets – Sun through Mars – are most important. The social planets, Jupiter and Saturn, are of secondary importance. Chiron and the outer planets are least important. (There are situations where non-personal planets can gain importance in natal interpretation, but these are beyond the scope of this discussion about retrogrades.)
Mercury retrograde gets the most press, since it’s not only a personal planet, but goes retrograde three times a year! The Sun and Moon never go retrograde, so we don’t have to worry about them in this context.
That only leaves two personal planets: Venus and Mars. Their retrogrades deserve special attention. This is because they’re less common, and have very specific and important effects.
Mars won’t turn retrograde until 9/9, so we don’t have to worry about him just yet. But Venus turns retrograde today, and is the (evening) star of the hour!
Venus Retrograde Specifically
Venus turns retrograde today (5/13) at 2:45 AM EDT, at 21°50′ Gemini. She’ll turn direct again on 6/25, at 5°20′ Gemini. She only turns retrograde every 18 months, so it’s a big deal!
Venus retrograde is a great time to contemplate how her three primary themes are expressing in your life. How are your most important relationships going? How are you doing with your creative expression? And how’s your financial situation?
As retrogrades go, Venus’ is relatively short: only six weeks. So you should be able to mostly stick with reflection on these themes during the retrograde. (Of course, take action if you must.)
Venus’ retrograde is entirely within Gemini. This lets you add a new layer of curiosity to Venus’ themes. Do you enjoy enough variety in your relationships? Do they give you enough intellectual stimulation?
Are you craving more diversity in your creative expression? Regarding money, would it help to have additional income streams? If you have a retirement fund, is your diversification appropriate for your risk tolerance?
Finally, let’s explore the important aspects Venus makes as she turns retrograde. These can further enrich your Venus retrograde musings.
In the Venus retrograde chart above, Venus is tightly conjunct the asteroid goddess Vesta. Are you using your relationships to support an important cause which supports the greater good? Are you feeling called to contribute to such a cause with your creativity and/or financial support?
Venus makes a tight square with Neptune. This can be a huge creativity booster, with Venus as the artist and Neptune flowing abundant divine inspiration.
The Venus-Neptune square can also help you deepen your relationship with your higher self. Doing this can give you more harmony, flow, ease and grace in your daily life. It can also dramatically increase your intuition and saturate you with bliss! For a simple, quick technique that has helped thousands do this, check out my free Embodied Awakening Invocation.
Focusing on these life-affirming Venus-Neptune areas can help you avoid the potential downsides of this square. These can include excessive self-indulgence, laziness, poor personal boundaries, and “playing the victim” in a relationship.
The tight 135° sesquare between the Aquarian Moon and Venus could catalyze emotional challenge in certain relationships. If a relationship is too unstable or crazy-making, one option is to call it quits.
If termination isn’t the obvious solution, relationship healing can be worth a try. A tried-and-true tool for this is Marshall Rosenberg’s 4-Part Nonviolent Communication Process. I highly recommend it – and so do the United Nations and the Dalai Lama!
Relationship conflict always points to unhealed psychological wounds, whether they’re from your childhood or past lives. This is work you have to do within yourself. For a field-tested tool that can help you accelerate this essential “shadow work”, check out my free Healing Invocation.
A Venus-Uranus semisquare can have the same effects as the Moon sesquare. In addition, this Uranus aspect can encourage you to reinvent your relationship on some level. It might even send down an intuitive flash with a specific suggestion! This semisquare can also give you new creative inspiration, or fresh ideas on how to work better with your finances.
North Node Conjunction
Venus’ final significant aspect as she turns retrograde is a loose conjunction to the North Node of the Moon. The North Node is the “destiny point”, the strongest astrological indicator of life purpose.
Do you know your life purpose? If so, are specific relationships supporting it or distracting you from it? Is your creative expression, or consumption of others’ creativity, aligned with your reason for being on earth?
How about money? I’ve read many reports of near-death experiences. But I’ve never heard of a life review where a person’s financial net worth was given any importance. However, money can help you accomplish the goals that serve your life purpose. Are you using money in this way, rather than mistaking it for an end unto itself?
You can milk a lot of insight from this Venus retrograde. You could stick to the basics of relationship, creativity and money. Or you could dive deep into other themes I’ve described here. Whatever you choose, I hope you emerge from this Venus retrograde with new realizations and action steps that make your life more wonderful!
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Grand Trine Peaks
The Mercury-Juno-Pallas-Saturn Grand Trine that started on 5/10 peaks today (5/13) and ends on 5/17.
Now that Saturn and Venus have turned retrograde, we come to the grand finale – our third retrograde in four days – Jupiter!
Jupiter turns retrograde today (5/14) at 10:32 AM EDT, at 27°14′ Capricorn. He’ll turn direct again in four months, on 9/12, at 17°24′ Capricorn.`
Just Because It’s Jupiter
Jupiter is the largest gas giant in the solar system. So it makes sense that he also has a large number of astrological meanings. So, just because it’s Jupiter, here are themes you can reflect on during his retrograde:
- higher education
- the meaning of life
- foreign countries, cultures and customs
- long-distance travel
- journeys, quests and adventures
- joy, excitement and enthusiasm
- wisdom-givers such as professors, philosophers and gurus
That’s a lot of meanings! Reflect on the ones that are most resonant for you while Jupiter is retrograde. Then take appropriate action on them after he turns direct on 9/12. (Of course, you can act on any of Jupiter’s themes while he’s still retrograde if a situation requires it.)
Jupiter in Capricorn
Jupiter retrogrades entirely within Capricorn, which adds another layer of meaning. Capricorn is Jupiter’s natural complement. Capricorn tends to contract, which can keep Jupiter from expanding too much. Capricorn is serious, which can restrain Jupiter from excessive partying.
Capricorn is an extremely practical sign. It loves systems and procedures that get things done efficiently. In contrast, Jupiter can get excessively whimsical and starry-eyed. So Jupiter’s placement in Capricorn makes it easier for you to create useful plans and strategies. These will help you move forward in your Jupiterian goals.
On the meta level, I’ve written this Jupiter retrograde interpretation in a Capricornian style so far. The sentences have been short, clear and to the point. To highlight the differences between these contrasting energies, a Jupiterian sentence would be more like this one, with multiple clauses layered on top of each other, avoiding the inevitable period for as long as possible so that it can expand, free and unfettered, expressing itself uninhibitedly and spontaneously until, having thoroughly luxuriated in the complete expression that it most deeply desires, it finally glides back to earth and comes to rest, sated and satisfied, content at last to meet the full stop (as the British refer to the punctuation mark which Americans call a “period”) that finally, at long last, ends this sentence.
Jupiter’s most important aspects are its conjunctions to Pluto and Saturn. This, of course, is the Jupiter-Saturn-Pluto Triple Conjunction that brought us the coronavirus pandemic … and is indisputably 2020’s most important aspect pattern!
I’ve already written extensively about this. If you want to dive in deeper, read my 4/4 interpretation of the Jupiter-Pluto conjunction. That post also links to my 1/12 interpretation of the Saturn-Pluto conjunction, as well as bonus audio content from my 2020 forecast lecture.
One of Jupiter’s most important meanings is hope. For me, this is the vision of a more wonderful future reality.
Especially in challenging times like these, the story you tell yourself about the meaning of your life – another important Jupiter theme – is of critical importance. Believing the story that you live in a cruel and capricious universe, in which life has no meaning, is a certain recipe for misery.
But believing the story that you were born for a reason, with a crucial soul mission to fulfill, puts things in a much more positive light. Believing that challenges happen not to you, but for you – to catalyze your growth and expand your capabilities – can inspire you with the energy and enthusiasm you need to master them.
Ancient astrologers called Jupiter the “Great Benefic” – the luckiest planet in the sky. Remember that while Jupiter is retrograde. No matter how dire a situation seems, good things can always come from it. The greater the challenge, the greater the breakthrough once you’ve mastered it!
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All dates and times are in the U.S. eastern time zone. Events are most powerful on the dates listed, but their influence will be active for at least a week before and after.
Everyone is affected by these global transits. However, you’ll be most powerfully impacted when moving planets activate sensitive points in your natal chart. Discover how these transits will personally affect you by booking a session with me.
Check back around the 1st and 16th for updated forecasts.