Whether you are midsummer or midwinter, the Sun is making his way through the last five degrees of the conflict-avoidant sign of Cancer, nuzzling up to an uncomfortable square aspect with Uranus. The First Quarter Moon on July 19 at 12:52pm US/Pacific provides the opportunity to shout about the grievances or griefs, unmet cravings or conflicts going on in your life which may have been boiling over since last week’s Cancer New Moon. Whether it is a good idea or a bad idea to shout it out may not matter much in the heat of the moment, but communications are unlikely to be entirely clear. On July 6, Mercury entered the shadow of the path of their upcoming retrograde, which tends to bring to the surface some of the more typical retrograde hijinks—failing to understand or to be understood, both forgetting and remembering important things or people, receiving new information which completely changes one’s outlook, understanding or opinion, and so on. However deeply you dove (or were dunked) into last week’s New Moon, there is more to come because it is not enough to receive new information or a new perspective—how your life must change as a result is an entirely different matter. The Sun in Cancer tends to look backwards in time, and as comforting as sentimentality can be, hanging onto a glaze of idealization over the past will prove increasingly problematic.

Along those lines, Venus begins to oppose the dreamtime of Neptune just as she makes a pleasant sextile to forgiving Jupiter (exact July 22) which might soften the edges of our judgment—both in good and bad ways. Much ink has been spilled over the spiritual dangers of “judging” situations, that is, appraising the value of people, things and events based on our personal notion of ethics (good and bad). In our haste to categorize things within our moral frameworks, we may miss crucial facts and fail to notice significant contradictions which would allow us to better understand why people do the things they do, or why something went down the way it did. On the other hand, absolute moral relativism—the idea that there really is no better or worse way and that all acts are equal—is even less likely to promote understanding and necessary moral reflection. This week, we might instead call upon the possibilities of discernment, which plays well with the spiritual triplets of empathy, humility and compassion. Let us not dehumanize others by either demonizing or lionizing them—saying someone is either completely evil or can do no wrong—or by dismissing them or their actions—failing to take up the hard work of relating to them as a fellow aspect of the divine. We have only begun to witness the potential for polarization (splitting the world into pairs of hostile opposites) in the long-term collective transit of Saturn-Pluto (2018 – 2021) but don’t overlook the power and importance of each gesture of empathy, humility and compassion, however small or however large.

Rounding out this week, the Sun will enter its home sign of Leo on July 22 and turn our attention to the incredibly active fixed signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius) of the summer of 2018. The Sun in Leo warms the heart and is much more extroverted than the Sun in Cancer. We can expect correlations to Mercury retrograde to amp up from this date, as we may feel more expressive, but don’t expect it to be all bad! Mercury’s retrograde is a wonderful time to reconnect with old friends and under these skies, that could come about by chance meetings or otherwise quite by surprise. Look back through any unfinished creative projects to see if there is anything you would like to bring back to life as this could bring you much joy. This Leo season (until Aug. 22), be open to new or even whimsical creative urges but take a playful stance towards them—they may be just a practice ground for something completely different, or a fleeting prayer offered up to the beauty of the cosmos.

Step into the realms of Soul and enlarge the conversation you are having with the world through an astrological consultation. With Erica as your guide, cross the astrological bridge between heaven and Earth to transform liabilities into assets and cooperate with the energies and forces presently shaping your life. Get in touch at erica at realimaginal dot com!

SATURN RETURN SPECIAL    In honor of the generation born roughly 30 years ago with a Saturn-Uranus-Neptune conjunction in Capricorn, I am offering everyone with natal Saturn placed from 25° Sagittarius to 29° Capricorn ~ roughly those born Jan. 1929 – Nov. 1932; Mar. 1958 – Jan. 1962; and Dec. 1987 – Feb. 1991 ~ a special Saturn return reading at the following reduced rates for a limited time only:

Returning clients
$65 for 60 minutes
$35 for 30 minutes

New clients
$75 for 60 minutes
$40 for 30 minutes

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